Southern District of New York Judge Jed S. Rakoff on Tuesday approved an order that will allow Bank of America to waive attorney-client privilege and work-product protection with regard to ongoing federal and state government inquiries at the same time that it continues to claim the privilege and protection in private lawsuits.

Faced with numerous probes into the bank’s acquisition of Merrill Lynch, its board of directors last week agreed to make the material available. Under the order in Securities and Exchange Commission v. Bank of America Corporation, 09 civ. 6829, the bank and Merrill Lynch will turn over information generated between Sept. 1, 2008, and Jan. 16, 2009, relevant to the bank’s alleged failure to disclose to its shareholders bonuses it anticipated making to Merrill employees at the time of the merger.

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