Thursday, July 18, 2013

SJC Allows Searching of E-Mail With Safeguard Protocol

This week the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court clarified the process to be used to examine a defendant's email after indictment.  The Preventive Medicine Associates case addresses the delicate intersection of search and seizure and attorney-client privilege law in an age when so much evidence has gone from paper to  electronic.  The Court has issued parameters for the future use of "taint teams" to sort out criminal evidence from privileged communication in a defendant's email.  The difficulty of ensuring an impenetrable wall between members of the taint team and the prosecution team was a key issue in this case which involved Medicaid fraud against MassHealth through inappropriate referrals by sober homes for drug testing to a specific group of medical practices.

For more information about the rapidly evolving world of electronic evidence see our page on the Massachusetts Law About Electronic Discovery.