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United States v. Jicarilla Apache Nation

Docket No. Op. Below Argument Opinion Vote Author Term
10-382 Federal Cir. Apr 20, 2011
Tr.Aud.
Jun 13, 2011 7-1 Alito OT 2010

Holding: The fiduciary exception to the attorney-client privilege does not apply to the general trust relationship between the United States and the Native American tribes. (Kagan, J., recused.)

Plain English Holding: In litigation with Native American tribes over the management of money that the government holds on behalf of the tribes, the federal government can refuse to turn over documents relating to communications between the government and its attorneys relating to the money and its management.

Judgment: Reversed and remanded, 7-1, in an opinion by Justice Samuel Alito on June 13, 2011. Justice Ginsburg filed an opinion concurring in the judgment, which Justice Breyer joined. Justice Sotomayor filed a dissenting opinion. (Kagan, J., recused.)

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