Privacy Notice Effective 31st December 2020
Rubin Lewis O’Brien LLP Gwent House, Gwent Square, Cwmbran,
Tel: 01633 867000 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
UK Data Privacy/Data Protection Law changed significantly on 25th May 2018.
The General Data Protection Regulation (or GDPR for short) was a positive step towards you having more control over how your data is used and how you are contacted by us. At 11pm on 31st December 2020, EU GDPR will no longer apply to personal data held or processed within the UK. Instead, “UK GDPR” will apply to such data. The provisions of UK GDPR are essentially the same as EU GDPR and therefore the following rights continue to apply. We confirm that we do not normally hold or process your data outside the UK but if we do we will ensure there are sufficient “adequacy” arrangements or “safeguards” in place to protect your rights.
If you are an individual, the rights you have under the UK GDPR include the following:
- The right to be informed
- The right of access
- The right to rectification
- The right to erasure
- The right to restrict processing
- The right to data portability
- The right to object
- Rights in relation to automated decision making and profiling.The changes will also help to better protect your Personal Data. We have therefore updated our privacy notice to reflect these changes.We use your personal data to help us provide an excellent client service, which includes tailoring the information we share with you to help ensure that it’s relevant, useful and timely.We will respect your privacy and work hard to ensure we meet strict regulatory requirements. We will not sell your personal data to third parties.We will provide you with easy ways to manage and review your marketing choices if you receive direct marketing communications from us.
We are a firm that is regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA). As you might expect, we are already subject to strict rules of confidentiality. It is therefore already part of the fabric and culture of our firm to keep your information private and secure.
We would ask you to help us keep your data secure by carefully following any guidance and instructions we give e.g. communicating bank account details and transferring funds to us.
We are sometimes obliged to share your Personal Data with external authorities without notifying you e.g. as required by the Anti-Money Laundering & Counter Terrorist Financing Act 2017. In all other cases, we will be transparent, and we will explain to you why we are requesting your data and how we are using it.
Lawful Bases for Processing your Data
The new law states that we are allowed to use personal information only if we have a proper and lawful reason to do so. This includes sharing it with others outside the firm e.g. an auditor of a relevant quality standard.
The GDPR says we must have one or more of these reasons:
- Contract: the processing is necessary for a contract we have with an individual, or because they have asked us to take specific steps before entering into a contract.
- Legal obligation: the processing is necessary for you to comply with the law (not including contractual obligations).
- Legitimate interests: the processing is necessary for our legitimate interests or the legitimate interests of a third party unless there is a good reason to protect the individual’s personal data which overrides those legitimate interests.
- Consent: the individual has given clear consent for us to process their personal data for a specific purpose.A legitimate interest is when we have a business or commercial reason to use your information.Here is a list of all the ways that we may use your personal data, and which of the reasons we rely on to do so.
Special Categories and Criminal Convictions Data
Further to our lawful bases for processing personal data we rely on further conditions contained within the Data Protection Act 2018 (as amended by the Data Protection, Privacy and Electronic Communications (Amendments etc.)(EU Exit) Regulations 2019 and 2020) for processing these types of data. These conditions are contained in Schedule 1, Part 3 of the Act. The primary condition we rely on is known as “legal claims” where;
This condition is met if the processing—
(a) is necessary for the purpose of, or in connection with, any legal proceedings
(including prospective legal proceedings),
(c) is otherwise necessary for the purposes of establishing, exercising or defending legal
We would normally also rely on another condition in Schedule 1, Part 3 of the Act known as
“consent” where, due to the nature of these types of data we would obtain your consent prior
to processing them.
If our reason for processing data is in connection with the Schedule 1, Part 2 of the Act, condition 18, safeguarding of individuals and children at risk,. This is because the processing will be necessary for the purposes of;
(a) protecting an individual from neglect or physical, mental or emotional harm, or
(b) protecting the physical, mental or emotional well-being of an individual,
In this condition;
Also, due to the nature of these data types, we comply with Schedule 1, Part 4 of the Data Protection Act which requires us to have an appropriate written policy explaining our security procedures, and data retention periods and we are required to retain this policy document and produce it to the Information Commissioner on request. Our policy is set out in the firm’s Information Management & Security Policy.
Types of Personal Data we process
Sources of Data
We collect personal data from various sources:
Who we share your Data with
Subject to the SRA Code of Conduct and the requirements with regard to client confidentiality, we may share your personal information with:
- Lawyers or other organisations on the other side of a matter or case
- Barristers or experts we instruct
- The courts and other tribunals
- Your Personal Representatives or Attorneys
- Estate Agents, IFAs, Referrers, etc
- Organisations that we introduce you to.
- HM Revenue and Customs
- The government both Central and Devolved
- Fraud Prevention Agencies including the National Crime Agency
- The SRA and other regulators
- ID checking organisationsAutomated Decision-MakingWe do not use automated decision-making systems. All decisions relating to you and your matter are made by a person.Personal Data we useWe typically will use the following types of personal data:
- Your Name
- Date of Birth
- Home address
- Contact details such as phone numbers and email addresses
- Bank details and account information
- Medical information (where applicable)
- Employment details
- Data that identifies you by cookies when you use our website
Sending Data outside the European Economic Area (EEA)
Unless you instruct us in a matter or case that involves an international element, we do not normally send your personal data outside the UK or EEA. If we do, then we will seek your consent to do so, explain the risks to you and talk to you about UK adequacy decisions and potential safeguards depending on the country involved.
Your refusal to provide Personal Data requested
If you refuse to provide the information requested, then it may cause delay and we may be unable to continue to act for you or complete your matter.
We may from time to time send you letters or emails about changes in the law and suggestions about actions that you might consider taking in the light of that information e.g. reviewing your will. We will send you this marketing information either because you have consented to receive it or because we have a “legitimate interest”.
You have the right to object and to ask us to stop sending you marketing information by contacting us at any time. You can of course change your mind and ask us to send the information again.
How long we keep your personal information
We are legally obliged to keep certain information for at least 5 years and typically store your file for 6 years before destroying it.
In some cases, e.g. Legal Aid Matters we are obliged to keep your files for a longer period of time, this period will be set out in our closing letter to you.
We will store Wills and other documents indefinitely.
We will keep your name and personal contact details on our database until you tell us that you would like them removed e.g. where you have changed solicitor.
How to get a copy of your Personal Information
If you wish to access your personal data then write to: Ross Williams
Rubin Lewis O’Brien LLP, Gwent House, Gwent Square, Cwmbran NP44 1PL
Telling us if your Personal Information is incorrect (The right to rectification)
If you think any information we have about you is incomplete or wrong, then you have the right to ask us to correct it. Please contact us as above.
As mentioned above you also have other rights, namely
- The right to erasure
- The right to restrict processing
- The right to data portabilityYou have the right to ask us to delete (erase) or stop us using your data if there is no longer any need for us to keep it (e.g. under a legal obligation).In terms of data portability then subject to any lien we may enjoy for non-payment of fees, we will comply promptly (where permitted) to your request to transfer your physical paper file to another solicitor upon receipt of your signed consent. If your file is in electronic format we will take reasonable steps to export the file to a “portable format” where possible so that your new solicitor can upload it to their system. As many different IT systems are used by the legal profession we cannot guarantee that we can provide data in a compatible format.ConsentUK GDPR in some cases requires us to obtain your explicit consent i.e. (a) the racial or ethnic origin of the data subject,
(b) his political opinions,
(c ) his religious beliefs or other beliefs of a similar nature,
(d) whether he is a member of a trade union (within the meaning of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992),
(e) his physical or mental health or condition,
(f) his sexual life,
(g) the commission or alleged commission by him of any offence, or
(h) any proceedings for any offence committed or alleged to have been committed by him, the disposal of such proceedings or the sentence of any court in such proceedings.
Where acting for you involves us processing such data we will seek your explicit consent e.g. when we plan to obtain your medical records.
You have the right to withdraw your consent by contacting us as stated above.
However, if you do so then we may not be able to progress you case or indeed continue to act for you.
How to Complain
If you are unhappy about how we are using your Personal Data then you can complain to us using the contact information above.
You also have the right to complain to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). Further details on how to raise a concern about our information rights practices with the ICO can be found on the ICO’s website: https://ico.org.uk/make-a-complaint/
What is a cookie?
A cookie, also known as a web cookie, or browser cookie, is a data file that is stored on your computer or mobile phone by a web browser, which can collect data such as what buttons have been clicked on, how much time has been spent on a web page, and other actions you may have carried out. Cookies also have the ability to remember actions and record preferences which allow certain pages to be served in a particular way.
Some examples of cookies come in the form of session cookies, which expire as soon as the user leaves the website. Other cookies, such as third party cookies, are set from different websites, like Google, and can be present on your device for months or up to a few years.
Specifically, we use
Google Analytics cookies. These cookies collect information in an anonymous form, including the number of visitors to the site, where visitors have come to the site from and the pages they visited.
Atlas cookies. These cookies are used to collect information about the marketing activity and the sales driven from this activity. The information is used to compile reports and to help improve the site and marketing activity. The cookies collect information in an anonymous form, including the number of clicks to the site from marketing activity, where the clicks have come from and the number of sales.
Management of cookies
If you have decided that you don’t want cookies placed on your device, you can alter your web browser settings so that it alerts you when cookies are sent to it, or you can reject cookies altogether. You can also remove cookies that have already been placed.
However, if you wish to restrict or block web browser cookies which are placed on your computer or mobile device, then you can do this through your browser settings in the Help section, located in your browser menu. Here it will explain clearly what to do.
Most web browsers allow easy management of cookies through browser settings. To find out more about cookies, including how to see what cookies have been set and how to manage and delete them, visitwww.allaboutcookies.org.
Updating this Notice
We will, from time to time, update this Privacy Notice to reflect emerging ICO guidance, requirements of the amended Data Protection Act 2018 and any other relevant changes in the law or regulations, adequacy decisions e.g. following BREXIT. We will also seek to learn from any published cases of Data Protection breaches.