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ʱ´«³» ç ‹ Ò«³¾»® ì IN THIS ISSUE:
Business Litigation
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Common Interest Privilege in the Transaction Context
International Arbitration
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With the recent extension in Ontario of common interest privilege beyond litigation into the transactional context, dealmakers welcome the Court’s protection of legal advice and privileged communications shared with the transaction deal team, as long as certain conditions are met and one avoidsinadvertent waiver. To advance a corporate or commercial transaction, the parties may benefit from sharing legal advice received by one of them. However, by doing so, that person risks having to disclose that legal advice at some future point, including in litigation, unless there is an applicable exception to the principle that sharing legal advice with a third party is a waiver of privilege. Ontariocourts may now recognize an exception to the waiver principle in the transaction context where legal advice is shared with investment bankers or others that are part of a “deal team”,1 and there is also reason to believe that the courts in Ontario have accepted that common interest privilege may arise in the transaction context. Common interest privilege has long been recognized in the litigationcontext: it allows parties in litigation to communicate privileged information on issues where they have a common interest, without risking waiver of privilege. For example, co-defendants can discuss

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litigationstrategy where they have a common interest in defeating the plaintiff’s claim with some confidence that the plaintiff will not be entitled to discover those discussions.2 The recent decision in Barclays Bank PLC v. Metcalfe & Mansfield Alternative Investments VII Corp. (Trustee of)3 marks the emerging acceptance of a broader application of the common interest privilege doctrine. By holding that thesharing of certain privileged communications during the negotiation of a transaction did not result in a waiver, the Court in Barclays extended the doctrine’s application beyond the litigation context to the transaction context. While other courts in Canada have previously broadened the application of the common interest doctrine to the transaction context, Barclays represents a...
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