Monday, October 15, 2012

Counsel’s Access to Former Client’s “Confidential Litigation Strategies” is Insufficient for Disqualification

The court denied defendant's motion to disqualify three attorneys representing plaintiff even though those three attorneys previously represented defendant in patent matters while at another law firm because there was not a reasonable probability that the attorneys had access to confidential information that could be used to defendant's disadvantage. "[T]his confidential information factor is a closer call. . . . [Defendant] cannot carry its burden by simply stating that [the attorneys] have knowledge of [its] 'practices and procedures.'. . . An allegation that [the attorneys] were made aware of [defendant's] confidential litigation strategies is insufficient to sustain the confidential information disqualification burden. Every attorney who represents a corporate client would be made privy to 'litigation strategy.' If the Court were to disqualify the [plaintiff's counsel] based on the facts alleged here, disqualification could almost always be supported under the confidential information prong."

E-Contact Technologies, LLC v. Apple Inc., et. al., 1-11-cv-00426 (TXED September 26, 2012, Order) (Giblin, M.J.).

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