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Ethics Advisory Committee issues opinion on destruction or retention of client files

Tuesday, September 29, 2015   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Beth Warrington
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The KBA Ethics Advisory Committee issued an opinion (Legal Ethics Op. No. 15-01) on the destruction or retention of client files. The opinion, issued Sept. 28, posed the following questions:
  • What considerations must be used when deciding how long to retain client files?
  • What steps should be taken in the return, retention or destruction of client files?
  • How long must a lawyer retain client files before they can be destroyed? Can a specific period be set?

The committee determined how long to retain client files or to destroy them must be considered on a case-by case basis, but it is generally acceptable to destroy client files after 10 years.

Read the full opinion online at

The Ethics Advisory Committee provides advisory opinions to KBA members on questions concerning ethical standards and practices, and to otherwise help educate lawyers about their ethical obligations and provide professional guidance in the area of ethical conduct.