Bringing Someone with You to Meet Your Family Law Lawyer

Attorney-client privilege is the fundamental principle through which clients can freely discuss their private affairs with their chosen family law lawyer while remaining safe in the knowledge that their disclosures will go no further. To ensure that the discussions between a lawyer and their client remain absolutely confidential, they are normally held with no other parties present, unless the client chooses to bring someone of their own volition. 

What the Attorney-Client Privilege Means in Practice

The attorney-client privilege means that a client can speak freely and honestly with their chosen family law lawyer, disclosing all the information that is pertinent to their unique circumstances. The lawyer who receives this information will be bound by law to never disclose it to anyone else, at times even if ordered by a court to do so. This privilege ensures that the lawyer can provide their client with loyal and trustworthy service at all times, thereby fulfilling their professional responsibilities and ensuring all legal processes are properly administered.

Why You May Want Someone with You

Emotions can run high during any discussions that are related to family law, so clients may wish to bring a trusted family member or friend with them when they attend legal meetings. Sometimes, this helps clients feel reassured by seeing a familiar face, or the other individual’s presence might jog their memory regarding certain topics they wish to discuss. They may also want to talk about the outcome of the meeting with someone after it’s over, and many people feel that a friend or family member could have a more meaningful discussion with them if they were present at the meeting.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that if a third party is present at a legal meeting, it will no longer be possible to guarantee the confidentiality of any information that’s disclosed as the third party may unintentionally disclose sensitive legal matters at some point in the future. For this reason, if a client insists that they need a third party to attend a legal meeting with them, they will be required to sign a disclaimer that will state that they agree to waive attorney-client privilege.

A common scenario is where a client either has interested family members who want to know more about their case or where the client wishes for a friend or family member to be able to speak with their attorney. Unless there is a confidentiality waiver, attorneys cannot speak with friends or family about your case. As the client, you hold the ultimate key of who your attorney can speak with about your case in these situations and about what.

Situations Where You May Want Someone with You

There are some situations in which having an additional person present can improve a client’s outcome during discussions with a family law lawyer. These include:


If a couple is in the middle of a dispute that is proving to be too complicated to resolve on their own, even with legal assistance, a neutral third party, known as a mediator, may help a lawyer and their client explore alternative solutions. Because this neutral third party is not involved in the case and therefore has no pre-existing bias toward either party, their assistance may prove highly beneficial in reaching a satisfactory outcome.

Emotional Support

In some situations, a client may feel more confident simply by having a trusted confidant close at hand. In these cases, it may be possible for a family law lawyer to accommodate that trusted person outside of the room in which discussions are being held. The client would therefore be free to seek emotional support from their chosen third party at any point during the discussions but without them being in the room and privy to the conversations that are being held. By providing emotional support in this manner, it’s possible for a third party to be nearby without jeopardizing the attorney-client privilege.

The attorney-client privilege is essential in safeguarding against the unintended disclosure of sensitive information that could potentially jeopardize the outcome of a legal case. Waiving your right to this privilege is a serious matter that is worthy of serious consideration before proceeding. If you believe that you would benefit from the presence of a familiar face during legal discussions, you should consult with a firm that is experienced in the field of family law in Albuquerque to determine the most appropriate manner to make this desire a reality.

At the Law Office of Dorene A. Kuffer, we will work with you to identify a solution that allows you to have immediate access to the support you need while protecting the information that you share with us and the legal advice we provide. To discuss your case with a trusted and experienced family law lawyer, contact us today.