Google accused of hiding business communicationsThe US Department of Justice, which has accused Google of violating antitrust laws in its research efforts, has asked a judge to rule that the company abused the attorney-client privilege to avoid releasing documents.
The Department of Justice has accused the company, of training its employees to submit fictitious legal advice requests, to protect commercial communications from disclosure in the event of a dispute.
The Justice Department told the judge handling the antitrust case against the tech giant that Google is ordering employees to add internal counsel to written communications.
It also urges employees to add an attorney-client privilege to these communications and to seek legal advice, even when it is not required.
The Department of Justice is now asking a judge to sanction the company for its widespread and willful misuse of attorney-client privilege to conceal commercial documents related to the case.
The Department of Justice, in a briefing its lawyers wrote to the judge, said Google described the practice as a comprehensive communications plan.
New employees are urged to follow this practice without discussing whether it should be used when legal advice is really required.
In addition, the company offers the same training teams that deal with antitrust matters. I require these teams to commit to exercising any written communication that includes revenue sharing agreements and mobile application distribution agreements.
These agreements are centralized. The US Department of Justice accused the company of an unfair monopoly on research and research-related advertising in its 2020 antitrust lawsuit.
The lawsuit also includes Google’s terms for device manufacturers requiring them to pre-install their apps. Other than setting its own search engine as the default search engine.
Google abuses the Hide Files Privilege
The Department of Justice said that internal advisors who are included in emails from outreach programs often do not respond with caution.
She added that many of the emails were related to revenue-sharing agreements that Google had with other companies. This practice is widespread throughout the company and even used by the CEO of the company.
The Justice Department asked the court to consider penalties for the company’s actions. She also asked the court to order her to submit all the letters she withheld, despite the lawyer’s failure to respond to requests for legal advice.
The Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against Google in 2020, and the trial is expected to begin in September 2023.
A Google spokesperson said the company had provided the government with more than 4 million documents. “Our team has dedicated itself to answering inquiries and complaints over the years,” he added. The opposite advice is completely wrong. We educate our employees about legal franchising and when to seek legal advice.