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E-mail unquestionably enhances the quality of many individual representations. But when clients use their work e-mails, systems or devices to communicate with their lawyers, they may, unwittingly, compromise the privileged nature of those communications, exposing those candid exchanges to their adversaries or to regulators and prosecutors. For some time, many lawyers have advised clients to use personal, web-based e-mail for attorney-client communications, and to refrain from sending e-mails and text messages from their employer-issued BlackBerrys—instructions all too often observed in the breach. A growing body of case law, and a recent opinion issued by the American Bar Association, make clear that lawyers must help clients assess the risks of sending e-mails from work systems or devices.

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