How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Buachaill Your Own Question
Buachaill
Buachaill, Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 10623
Experience:  Barrister 17 years experience
53108719
Type Your Law Question Here...
Buachaill is online now

Hello I have a deputyship over an old lady with dementia, I

Resolved Question:

Hello I have a deputyship over an old lady with dementia, I have just found out that the solicitor who is the executor of her will has been in talks with a third party who claim to be distant family talking about her affairs,property and so on is this solicitor in breach of client confidentially?
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Buachaill replied 3 years ago.
Buachaill :

1. At the outset, the role of executor does not come into play until a person has died. So a solicitor can only be in breach of their duty to this old lady if the old lady was a client of the solicitor and prepared her will with that solicitor. Otherwise, no duty of confidentiality arises if the solicitor is merely going to be an executor at a future date. The old lady must have been a client of the solicitor for an obligation of confidentiality to arise. Secondly, if the old lady was a client of the solicitor, then an obligation of client confidentiality arises. This precludes the solicitor from mentioning to any third party the details of the old lady's affairs or disclosing what she told him as solicitor. In this regard, the solicitor may tell a third party publicly available information such as the fact that a deputyship has been entered into. But the solicitor may not discuss her affairs or her property interests with the third party. Those matters are covered by the cloak of confidentiality and may not be revealed by the solicitor to third parties. The solicitor may be sued in relation to this breach of confidentiality.

Buachaill :

2. You, as deputy may make a complaint to the SRA, and you may seek to institute proceedings on the part of the old lady against the solicitor. However, be aware that damages will be small in amount if the third party is in fact family or has some lawful interest, such as under intestacy in the lady's affairs and estate. So whilst there is a clear breach of professional discipline, you need to be aware that a court will not consider disclosure to a family member or the affairs of a lady with dementia as being one worthy of an award of damages unless there is something wholly irregular involved.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

please ignore my first rating I pushed the wrong button.

rating 5 stars excellent is what want thanks Mark Dixon

Expert:  Buachaill replied 3 years ago.
3. Dear *****, Thank you. Please try and press the correct button again.
Buachaill and other Law Specialists are ready to help you