The New Jersey Supreme Court has recently determined in O’Boyle v. Borough of Longport, decided on July 21, 2014, that the common interest rule extends to protect confidential attorney-client communications/attorney work product in the context of OPRA requests. The Court found that the protections will apply if the information is shared among counsel for different parties and the following conditions are met: (1) the disclosure is made due to actual or anticipated litigation; (2) for the purposes of furthering a common interest; and (3) the disclosure is made in a manner not inconsistent with maintaining confidentiality against adverse parties. In applying that rule, a private attorney’s work product will remain privileged despite its disclosure to a third-party municipal attorney because the materials were shared in a manner calculated to preserve their confidentiality, in anticipation of litigation, and in furtherance of a common purpose. For more on this case, see the following link: http://law.justia.com/cases/new-jersey/supreme-court/2014/a-16-12.html
– Daniel J. Granatell, Esq.