WHAT IS THE GDPR?
The EU General Data Protection Regulations in relation to the processing of personal data e.g. names, email addresses etc.
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF THIS DOCUMENT?
To inform you as to how we deal with your personal information. Hool Law Limited is committed to protecting the privacy and security of your personal information.
This privacy notice describes how we collect and use personal information about you in accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation effective from 25 May 2018.
Hool Law Limited is a “data controller”. This means that we are responsible for deciding how we hold and use personal information about you. We are required under data protection legislation to notify you of the information contained in this privacy notice.
This notice applies to current data subjects i.e. anyone whose data we hold. This notice does not form part of any contract to provide services. We may update this notice at any time.
It is important that you read this notice, together with any other privacy notice we may provide on specific occasions when we are collecting or processing personal information about you, so that you are aware of how and why we are using such information.
DATA PROTECTION PRINCIPLES
We will comply with data protection law. This says that the personal information we hold about you must be:
1. Used lawfully, fairly and in a transparent way.
2. Collected only for valid purposes that we have clearly explained to you and not used in any way that is incompatible with those purposes.
3. Relevant to the purposes we have told you about and limited only to those purposes.
4. Accurate and kept up to date.
5. Kept only as long as necessary for the purposes we have told you about.
6. Kept securely.
THE KIND OF INFORMATION WE HOLD ABOUT YOU
Personal data, or personal information, means any information about an individual from which that person can be identified. It does not include data where the identity has been removed (anonymous data).
There are “special categories” of more sensitive personal data which require a higher level of protection.
We may collect, store, and use the following categories of personal information about you although this will be limited to what is adequate and necessary and will not be unduly excessive:
• Personal contact details such as name, title, addresses, telephone numbers, and personal email addresses.
• Date of birth.
• Marital status and dependants.
• Next of kin and emergency contact information.
• National Insurance number.
• Bank account details, payroll records and tax status information.
• Salary, annual leave, pension and benefits information.
• Start date.
• Location of employment or workplace.
• Copy of driving licence.
• Employment records (including job titles, work history, working hours, training records and professional memberships).
• Disciplinary and grievance information.
• CCTV footage and other information obtained through electronic means such as swipecard records.
We may also collect, store and use the following “special categories” of more sensitive personal information:
• Information about your health, including any medical condition, health and sickness records.
• Information about criminal convictions and offences.
HOW IS YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION COLLECTED?
We collect personal information about data subjects either directly from clients, through solicitor organisations, insurance companies or third parties in a defence litigation context.
HOW WE WILL USE INFORMATION ABOUT YOU
We will only use your personal information when the law allows us to. Most commonly, we will use your personal information in the following circumstances:
1. Where we need to perform the contract we have entered into with you.
2. Where we need to comply with a legal obligation.
3. Where it is necessary for our legitimate interests (or those of a third party) and your interests and fundamental rights do not override those interests.
4. We collect, retain and process personal information to enable us to give legal advice, provide legal and related business services and conduct legal proceedings on behalf of our clients.
We may also use your personal information in the following situations:
1. Where we need to protect your interests (or someone else’s interests).
3. By retaining our firm to represent you, you consent to the collection and use of your personal information (including sensitive personal data) by us, provided it is used as set out in this Notice.
Change of purpose
We will only use your personal information for the purposes for which we collected it, unless we reasonably consider that we need to use it for another reason and that reason is compatible with the original purpose. If we need to use your personal information for an unrelated purpose, we will notify you and we will explain the legal basis which allows us to do so.
Please note that we may process your personal information without your knowledge or consent, in compliance with the above rules, where this is required or permitted by law.
HOW WE USE PARTICULARLY SENSITIVE PERSONAL INFORMATION
”Special categories” of particularly sensitive personal information require higher levels of protection. We need to have further justification for collecting, storing and using this type of personal information. We may process special categories of personal information in the following circumstances:
1. In limited circumstances, with your explicit written consent.
2. Where we need to carry out our legal obligations and in line with our data protection policy.
3. Where it is needed in the public interest, such as for equal opportunities monitoring or in relation to our occupational pension scheme, and in line with our data protection policy.
4. We may process this type of information where it is needed in relation to legal claims or where it is needed to protect your interests (or someone else’s interests) and you are not capable of giving your consent, or where you have already made the information public.
Do we need your consent?
We do not need your consent if we use special categories of your personal information in accordance with our written policy to carry out our legal obligations or exercise specific rights.
We may approach you for your written consent to allow us to process certain particularly sensitive data. If we do so, we will provide you with full details of the information that we would like and the reason we need it, so that you can carefully consider whether you wish to consent. You should be aware that it is not a condition of your contract/retainer with us (should there be one in place) that you agree to any request for consent from us.
INFORMATION ABOUT CRIMINAL CONVICTIONS
We may only use information relating to criminal convictions where the law allows us to do so. This will usually be where such processing is necessary to carry out our obligations and provided we do so in line with our data protection policy.
We may use information relating to criminal convictions where it is necessary in relation to legal claims, where it is necessary to protect your interests (or someone else’s interests) and you are not capable of giving your consent, or where you have already made the information public.
We will only collect information about criminal convictions if it is appropriate and where we are legally able to do so.
We may have to share your data with third parties, including third-party service providers.
We require third parties to respect the security of your data and to treat it in accordance with the law.
If we do, you can expect a similar degree of protection in respect of your personal information.
Why might you share my personal information with third parties?
We will share your personal information with third parties where required by law or other regulatory authority, where it is necessary to administer the working relationship with you or where we have another legitimate interest in doing so e.g. complying with our professional obligations, to enforce or protect our rights, property or the safety of our partners, staff and clients. (This includes exchanging information with other companies and organisations for the purposes of fraud prevention and detection and credit risk reduction.) We may also share your personal information with other parties in legal proceedings including solicitors acting on the other side of a case or transaction or to financial institutions providing finance for transaction.
Which third-party service providers process my personal information?
”Third parties” includes third-party service providers (including contractors and designated agents). The following activities are carried out by third-party service providers: IT services, shredding, archiving, the provision of expert opinions by Counsel or in a medical/engineering context. Other third parties we may engage may include but are not limited to insurers, insurance brokers, accountants, HSENI, HMRC, ELTO, CRU, auditors or other external agencies (including training providers), courts, tribunals and other government bodies and relevant regulators (Law Society).
How secure is my information with third-party service providers and other entities in our group?
Our third-party service providers are required to take appropriate security measures to protect your personal information in line with our policies. We do not allow our third-party service providers to use your personal data for their own purposes. We only permit them to process your personal data for specified purposes and in accordance with our instructions.
We have put in place appropriate security measures to prevent your personal information from being accidentally lost, used or accessed in an unauthorised way, altered or disclosed. In addition, we limit access to your personal information to those employees, agents, contractors and other third parties who have a business need to know. They will only process your personal information on our instructions and they are subject to a duty of confidentiality. Details of these measures may be obtained from Jonathan Hool, Data Protection Officer.
We have put in place procedures to deal with any suspected data security breach and will notify you and any applicable regulator of a suspected breach where we are legally required to do so.
How long will you use my information for?
We will only retain your personal information for as long as necessary to fulfil the purposes we collected it for, including for the purposes of satisfying any legal, accounting, or reporting requirements. Details of retention periods for different aspects of your personal information are available in our retention policy which is available from Jonathan Hool, Data Protection Officer. To determine the appropriate retention period for personal data, we consider the amount, nature, and sensitivity of the personal data, the potential risk of harm from unauthorised use or disclosure of your personal data, the purposes for which we process your personal data and whether we can achieve those purposes through other means, and the applicable legal requirements.
In some circumstances we may anonymise your personal information so that it can no longer be associated with you, in which case we may use such information without further notice to you. Once we are no longer required to retain your personal data having regard to the Law Society retention standards, we will securely destroy your personal information in accordance with our data retention policy.
RIGHTS OF ACCESS, CORRECTION, ERASURE, AND RESTRICTION
Your duty to inform us of changes
It is important that the personal information we hold about you is accurate and current. Please keep us informed if your personal information is subject to change.
Your rights in connection with personal information
Under certain circumstances, by law you have the right to:
• Request access to your personal information (commonly known as a “data subject access request”). This enables you to receive a copy of the personal information we hold about you and to check that we are lawfully processing it.
• Request correction of the personal information that we hold about you. This enables you to have any incomplete or inaccurate information we hold about you corrected.
• Request erasure of your personal information. This enables you to ask us to delete or remove personal information where there is no good reason for us continuing to process it. You also have the right to ask us to delete or remove your personal information where you have exercised your right to object to processing.
• Object to processing of your personal information where we are relying on a legitimate interest (or those of a third party) and there is something about your particular situation which makes you want to object to processing on this ground. You also have the right to object where we are processing your personal information for direct marketing purposes.
• Request the restriction of processing of your personal information. This enables you to ask us to suspend the processing of personal information about you, for example if you want us to establish its accuracy or the reason for processing it.
• Request the transfer of your personal information to another party.
If you want to review, verify, correct or request erasure of your personal information, object to the processing of your personal data, or request that we transfer a copy of your personal information to another party, please contact Jonathan Hool, Data Protection Officer in writing.
No fee usually required
You will not have to pay a fee to access your personal information (or to exercise any of the other rights). However, we may charge a reasonable fee if your request for access is clearly unfounded or excessive. Alternatively, we may refuse to comply with the request in such circumstances.
What we may need from you
We may need to request specific information from you to help us confirm your identity and ensure your right to access the information (or to exercise any of your other rights). This is another appropriate security measure to ensure that personal information is not disclosed to any person who has no right to receive it.
RIGHT TO WITHDRAW CONSENT
In the limited circumstances where you may have provided your consent to the collection, processing and transfer of your personal information for a specific purpose, you have the right to withdraw your consent for that specific processing at any time. To withdraw your consent, please contact Jonathan Hool, Data Protection Officer. Once we have received notification that you have withdrawn your consent, we will no longer process your information for the purpose or purposes you originally agreed to, unless we have another legitimate basis for doing so in law.
DATA PROTECTION OFFICER
We have appointed a data protection officer (DPO) to oversee compliance with this privacy notice. If you have any questions about this privacy notice or how we handle your personal information, please contact the DPO. You have the right to make a complaint at any time to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), the UK supervisory authority for data protection issues.
CHANGES TO THIS PRIVACY NOTICE
We reserve the right to update this privacy notice at any time, and we will provide all employees/clients with a new privacy notice when we make any substantial updates as well as displaying the most up to date version on our company website/email signature strip. We may also notify you in other ways from time to time about the processing of your personal information.
If you have any questions about this privacy notice, please contact Jonathan Hool, Managing Director, Hool Law Limited, 15-17 Chichester Street, Belfast.