Buttes Oil and Gas Co v Hammer: CA 1981

Reports made by employees to their employers or by agents to their principals are not privileged unless they satisfy, and are privileged if they are reports made for the purpose of being laid before the party’s legal adviser for the purpose of obtaining his advice in connection with the anticipated or pending litigation.
Attention was drawn to the option of striking out a reference to documents in a pleading if it was decided to assert privilege in respect of them. The existence of such an option was predicated upon the supposition that a once and for all waiver had not already taken place by virtue, merely, of the inclusion of a reference to the advice in a pleading. What the Master of the Rolls had in mind, as he made clear, was a situation where the reference to advice had been inadvertent.


Lord Denning MR


[1981] 1 QB 223


England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedRegina v Trutch, and Mary Trutch CACD 25-Jul-2001
The defendants had been pursued in substantial commercial litigation. They were alleged to have perjured themselves in affidavits of means sworn and filed at court. Later they had entered into deeds with the other parties, and part of the . .
Appeal fromButtes Oil and Gas Co v Hammer (No 3) HL 1982
The House considered a dispute between two Us oil companies about the right to exploit an oil field in the Gulf. Each claimed to have a concession granted by the ruler of a Gulf state. Each state claimed that the oil field was within its territorial . .
CitedWalsh Automation (Europe) Ltd v Bridgeman and others QBD 4-Jul-2002
Appeal from refusal of order for disclosure of legal advice given to a party. It was alleged that the defendant’s suggested attempt at fraud by means of a document drawn up by the solicitors would be revealed by disclosure of the advice given. . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Legal Professions, Litigation Practice

Updated: 16 May 2022; Ref: scu.180868