Nationwide Building Society v Various Solicitors: ChD 20 Jan 1998

Legal professional privilege could be set aside at disclosure where the fraudulent intention of one lay client was thereby shown as against another lender. The right to assert legal professional privilege does not apply to documents which came into existence in furtherance of a criminal or fraudulent purpose, but to overcome the privilege, there must be some prima facie evidence that the allegations of fraudulent or criminal purpose have some foundation of fact. ‘Provided the solicitor’s advice and assistance was employed in furtherance of the iniquity the exception came into play in relation to confidential communications between the solicitor and client which would otherwise be protected by the client’s privilege. It mattered not whether the solicitor was engaged to advise in relation to the misrepresentation or whether he was aware that his involvement was in furthering the iniquity.’


Blackburne J


Times 05-Feb-1998, Gazette 11-Feb-1998, [1999] PNLR 52, [1998] TLR 59


England and Wales

Cited by:

CitedArundel Corporation (an Overseas Company) v Mohammed Ramzan Khokher CA 9-Apr-2003
In the course of an application under the Landlord and Tenant Act, the landlord sought to adduce on appeal evidence that the tenant and his solicitors had sought to deceive the court.
Held: The application should not be heard in private since . .
CitedAbbey National Plc v Clive Travers and Co (a Firm) CA 18-May-1999
The defendants appealed an order for discovery saying it would infringe their duty of confidence to their clients. The firm had acted for the buyer, seller and lender. A fraud on the lender was alleged. The solicitors sought to rely upon the . .
CitedX v Y Ltd (Practice and Procedure – Disclosure) EAT 9-Aug-2018
Iniquity surpasses legal advice privilege
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – Striking-out/dismissal
An Employment Judge struck out paragraphs of the Claimant’s claim as they depended on an email in respect of which legal advice privilege was claimed. . .
CitedBBGP Managing General Partner Ltd and Others v Babcock and Brown Global Partners ChD 20-Aug-2010
Norris J held:
‘Although the case law refers to crime or fraud or dishonesty (such as fraudulent breach of trust, fraudulent conspiracy, trickery or sham contrivances) it is plain that the term ‘fraud’ is used in a relatively wide sense: Eustice’s . .
Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Legal Professions

Updated: 15 May 2022; Ref: scu.84229