Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 20. Domestic Relations
Chapter 11. Uniform Collaborative Law Act
5/21/2022

§ 20-184. Limits of privilege.

A. There is no privilege under § 20-182 for a collaborative law communication that is:

1. Available to the public;

2. A threat or statement of a plan to inflict bodily injury or commit a crime of violence;

3. Intentionally used to plan a crime, commit or attempt to commit a crime, or conceal an ongoing crime or ongoing criminal activity; or

4. In an agreement resulting from the collaborative law process, evidenced by a record signed by all parties to the agreement.

B. The privileges under § 20-182 for a collaborative law communication do not apply to the extent that a communication is:

1. Sought or offered to prove or disprove a claim or complaint of professional misconduct or malpractice arising from or related to a collaborative law process; or

2. Sought or offered to prove or disprove abuse, neglect, abandonment, or exploitation of a child or adult, unless the child protective services or adult protective services unit of the local department of social services is a party to or otherwise participates in the process.

C. There is no privilege under § 20-182 if a tribunal finds, after a hearing in camera, that the party seeking discovery or the proponent of the evidence has shown that the evidence is not otherwise available, the need for the evidence substantially outweighs the interest in protecting confidentiality, and the collaborative law communication is sought or offered in (i) a court proceeding involving a felony or misdemeanor or (ii) a proceeding seeking rescission or reformation of a contract arising out of the collaborative law process or in which a defense to avoid liability on the contract is asserted.

D. If a collaborative law communication is subject to an exception under subsection B or C, only the part of the communication necessary for the application of the exception may be disclosed or admitted.

E. Disclosure or admission of evidence excepted from the privilege under subsection B or C does not make the evidence or any other collaborative law communication discoverable or admissible for any other purpose.

F. The privileges under § 20-182 do not apply if the parties agree in advance in a signed record, or if a record of a proceeding reflects agreement by the parties, that all or part of a collaborative law process is not privileged. This subsection does not apply to a collaborative law communication made by a person who did not receive actual notice of the agreement that all or part of a collaborative law process is not privileged before the communication was made.

2021, Sp. Sess. I, c. 346.

The chapters of the acts of assembly referenced in the historical citation at the end of this section may not constitute a comprehensive list of such chapters and may exclude chapters whose provisions have expired.