GMSR obtains reversal of summary judgment against its client

Michelson v. Proskauer Rose, LLP, 2016 Cal.App. Unpub. LEXIS 4701. GMSR’s client sued a law firm for fraud, breach of fiduciary duty and legal malpractice, based upon the firm’s issuance of opinion letters regarding purportedly tax-advantaged investments that the Internal Revenue Service later determined were illegal. GMSR’s client asserted the attorney-client privilege as to his communications with another law firm that served as an intermediary between him and the defendant law firm. The trial court entered summary judgment for the defendant law firm on the basis that the privilege’s application precluded GMSR’s client from presenting evidence necessary to show it relied on the defendant’s opinions. The Court of Appeal reversed, concluding that the trial court’s evidentiary rulings were an abuse of discretion and that GMSR’s client had established triable issues.

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