Legal Question in Family Law in Maryland

Divorce - subpoena for work emails

My wife has issued a subpoena to my employer for all ''personal emails'' from my work account. Can she get this, and if so, how does my employer define ''personal''? I have personal emails to my attorney through my work account.

Asked on 10/13/08, 11:54 am

2 Answers from Attorneys

Robert Sher Wagshal and Sher
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Re: Divorce - subpoena for work emails

If the emails pertain to a legitimate issue in your case, she's entitled to see them. "Personal" would be defined as anything not pertaining to your employment duties. As for those directed to your attorney, s/he should seek to quash the subpoena as to them on the basis that they were privileged communications. However, your wife in response may claim that you should have known when you sent them that there would be a record accessible by third parties, and therefore you had no reasonable expectation of privacy. But I think on balance a court would not allow her to obtain those emails (between you and your attorney).

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10/13/08, 12:21 pm
Steven Scheinin Steven J. Scheinin, Lawyer
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Divorce - subpoena for work emails

Unless your employer specifically allows you to use his computer for personal e-mails, any e-mail sent to your attorney from your employer's computer would not be subject to attorney client privilege.

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10/13/08, 3:12 pm

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