Ablitt v Mills and Reeve (A Firm) and Another: ChD 24 Oct 1995

A solicitor receiving privileged documents where there had been an obvious, error should return them. The defendant solicitors who, on their client’s instructions, reviewed privileged information sent to them in error by counsel for the other party, were restrained from continuing to act. Blackburne J said: ‘it offends elementary notions of fairness and justice’ if, by knowingly taking advantage of the mistaken delivery of privileged papers, a party to litigation, ‘although not itself told what those papers contain, can continue to have the services in the action of those who on its instructions have read all the papers and who, as a result, have a very accurate perception of just how those who act for the plaintiff view the merits of the plaintiff’s claim and of the steps, tactically and otherwise, which they are advising the plaintiff to take in pursuit of his claim’.

Blackburne J
Times 25-Oct-1995
England and Wales
Cited by:
CitedStiedl v Enyo Law Llp and Others ComC 18-Oct-2011
The applicant, defendant in the main proceedings, sought an injunction to restrain the solicitors from acting for the claimant and from making any use of documents which had come into their privileged possession whilst acting for him. . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Litigation Practice, Legal Professions

Updated: 19 January 2022; Ref: scu.77610