DOJ 'Taint Teams' Pose Privilege Risks For Defendants

Law360 (July 29, 2020, 3:53 PM EDT) -- To address the issues surrounding the incidental seizure of privileged communications within a broader seizure of electronic data, the U.S. Department of Justice recently created a new Special Matters Unit within the Fraud Section.

The unit will function as a specialized team to address privilege-related issues. It will oversee one of the DOJ's favorite methods of privilege review — the use of "taint teams."[1]

The timing of the creation of this unit may reflect concern over recent court decisions that have criticized the way in which the DOJ uses taint teams. In any event, the new unit will no doubt affect...

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