2015 Oklahoma Statutes
Title 12. Civil Procedure
§12-2502.1. Communications between accountant and client.
A. As used in this section:
1. “Accountant” means a certified public accountant (CPA) or a public accountant;
2. “Client” means any person, public officer, corporation, association, or other organization or entity, either public or private, who consults an accountant for the purpose of obtaining accounting services; and
3. A communication between an accountant and a client of the accountant is “confidential” if not intended to be disclosed to third persons other than:
a.those to whom disclosure is in furtherance of the rendition of accounting services to the client, and
b.those reasonably necessary for the transmission of the communication.
B. A client has a privilege to refuse to disclose, and to prevent any other person or entity from disclosing, the contents of confidential communications with an accountant when the other person or entity learned of the communication because the communications were made in the rendition of accounting services to the client. This privilege includes other confidential information obtained by the accountant from the client for the purpose of rendering accounting advice.
C. The privilege provided for in this section may be claimed by the client, the guardian or conservator of the client, the personal representative of a deceased client, or the successor, trustee, or similar representative of a corporation, association, or other organization, whether or not in existence. The person who was the accountant at the time of the communication is presumed to have authority to claim the privilege but only on behalf of the client.
D. There is no accountant-client privilege under this section:
1. When the services of the accountant were sought or obtained to enable or aid anyone to commit or plan to commit what the client knew or should have known was a crime including, but not limited to, fraud;
2. When a communication is relevant to an issue of breach of duty by the accountant to the client of the accountant or by the client to the accountant; or
3. When a communication is relevant to a matter of common interest between two or more clients, if the communication was made by any of the clients to an accountant retained or consulted in common when offered in a civil action between clients.
E. A disclosure of a communication or information covered by the accountant-client privilege or the work-product doctrine does not operate as a waiver if:
1. The disclosure was inadvertent;
2. The holder of the privilege took reasonable steps to prevent disclosure; and
3. The holder of the privilege took reasonable steps to rectify the error including, but not limited to, information falling within the scope of paragraph 4 of subsection B of Section 3226 of Title 12 of the Oklahoma Statutes, if applicable.
F. Disclosure of a communication or information covered by the accountant-client privilege or the work-product doctrine to a governmental office, agency or political subdivision in the exercise of its regulatory, investigative, or enforcement authority does not operate as a waiver of the privilege or protection in favor of nongovernmental persons or entities. Disclosure of such information does not waive the privilege or protection of undisclosed communications on the same subject unless:
1. The waiver is intentional;
2. The disclosed and undisclosed communications or information concern the same subject matter; and
3. Due to principles of fairness, the disclosed and undisclosed communications or information should be considered together.
Added by Laws 2009, c. 251, § 3, eff. Nov. 1, 2009.
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