Legal Question in Civil Litigation in New Hampshire

Subpoena versus Confidentiality Agreement

If I am subpoenad to testify in a deposition in a lawsuit between my former employer and one of his customers to collect a bill, by the customer, do I have to abide by a confidentilaity agreement signed with my former employer?

Asked on 12/21/98, 9:15 am

2 Answers from Attorneys

Alan Pransky Law Office of Alan J. Pransky

Re: Subpoena versus Confidentiality Agreement

A confidentiality agreement cannot control a court. If you are subpeoned, give notice to the

employer and appear in court. If asked to testify as to a confidential matter, you should initially refuse

to answer the question based on the confidentiality agreement and ask the court for protection. If the

court orders you to answer then you must. You should have an attorney to guide you through this

problem. In particular, the advice given does not apply if the information is privileged instead of


Alan Pransky

Law Office of Alan J. Pransky

20 Eastbrook Road

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Answered on 1/26/99, 10:29 pm
Daniel Press Chung & Press, P.C.

Re: Subpoena versus Confidentiality Agreement

It depends on the terms of the agreement. No agreement (other than one founded on a legally cognizable privilege) can preclude you from testifying in response to a subpoena, but it can require you to notify the employer and give it the opportunity to object. You should have a lawyer review it and represent you at the deposition to ensure that you comply fully with both the agreement and the subpoena.

Daniel Press

Chung & Press, P.C.

6723 Whittier Ave., Suite 302

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Answered on 1/24/99, 9:33 pm

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