Legal Professional Conduct

Sudhir Rupaleria (MISC. APPLICATION NO. 1063 OF 2017) [2017] UGCOMMC 153 (21 December 2017);


Headnote and Holding: 

The applicant was a client of the first and second respondents, who represented the plaintiff (third respondent, a company) in a case against the applicant. The applicant claimed that during the legal representation, the first and second respondents became aware of facts prejudicial to him which were a violation of advocate and client relationship, thus applied for an injunction. 

The court considered whether the first and second respondents also handled matters which would arise in the suit against the applicant while representing the third respondent.

The court held that where there was a fiduciary relationship, the irrebuttable presumption is that there is a possibility of disclosure. Further, although some authorities state that the applicant should plead the confidential information that could be reviewed, recent authorities have held that such pleading would be contrary to the intended confidentiality. 

The court found that there was a fiduciary relationship between the first and second respondents. Moreso, the parties had a relationship of legal and litigation interaction. Therefore, information prejudicial to the applicant would likely emerge. 

The court accordingly granted the application and ordered the disqualification of the first and second respondents from the pending suit.


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