We may use your personal data to update you (by email, telephone or post) about legal and tax developments that might be of interest to you and/or information about our existing and new services.
We have a legitimate interest in processing your personal data for promotional purposes linked to the service(s) we have recently provided to you (see above ‘How and why we use your personal data’). This means we do not usually need your consent to send you promotional communications. However, where consent is needed, we will ask for this consent separately and clearly.
We will always treat your personal data with the utmost respect and never share it with other organisations for marketing purposes.
Right to opt out
You have the right to opt out of receiving promotional communications at any time by:
- Advising us by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) that you no longer wish to receive such communications
- Using the ‘unsubscribe’ link in promotional emails
We may ask you to confirm or update your marketing preferences if you instruct us to provide further services in the future, or if there are changes in the law, regulation, or the structure of our business.
Who we share your personal data with
We would expect to share personal data with:
- Professional advisers who we instruct on your behalf or refer you to, eg barristers, medical professionals, accountants, trustees or other experts;
- Other third parties where necessary to carry out your instructions; eg HM Revenue & Customs, HM Land Registry or Companies House;
- Our banks and our insurance brokers;
- External auditors, eg in relation to Lexcel accreditation and the audit of our accounts;
- External service suppliers that we use to make our business more efficient, eg document destruction, document storage and Information Technology providers.
We only allow our service providers to handle your personal data if we are satisfied they take appropriate measures to protect your personal data. We also impose contractual obligations on service providers to ensure they can only use your personal data to provide services to us and to you.
We may disclose and exchange information with law enforcement agencies and regulatory bodies to comply with our legal and regulatory obligations.
We may also need to share some personal data with other parties, such as potential buyers of some or all of our business or during a re-structuring. Usually, information will be anonymised but this may not always be possible. The recipient of the information will be bound by confidentiality obligations.
How long your personal data will be kept
We will not keep your personal data for longer than we need it for the purpose for which it is used. As set out above we use your personal data with your consent and/or to comply with our legal and regulatory obligations, for the performance of our contract with you or to take a step at your request before entering in to a contract, or for our legitimate interests or those of a third party.
As a general rule, if we are no longer providing services to you, we will delete or anonymise your Client and Matter file and personal data contained after 7 years. However, different retention periods apply for different types of personal data and for different services.
Following the end of the relevant retention period, we will delete or anonymise your personal data.
The firm is required to maintain records of client identification for at least 5 years from the date on which an occasional transaction is completed or the end of a business relationship with a client. The records that we must keep include those relating to:
- identity and identity verification;
- client & matter risk assessments;
- ongoing monitoring of the business relationship;
- enhanced due diligence measures; and
- additional information for Politically Exposed Persons: approval from senior management, enhanced due diligence undertaken (including source of wealth checks) and enhanced monitoring.
On expiry of this period, the Firm must delete any personal data, unless:
- we are required to retain it by another enactment (including any rule made by our regulator); or
- the data subject has given consent to the retention of that data; or
- we are required to retain the data for the purposes of any court proceedings; or
- we have reasonable grounds for believing that the records containing personal data that needs to be retained for the purposes of legal proceedings.
Where any of the above apply, then the Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020 (The MLR 2017) state that the maximum retention period should be 10 years from the date on which an occasional transaction is completed or the end of a business relationship with a client.
The MLR 2017 provide that personal data received from clients is subject to data protection legislation and can only be used or processed for the purposes of preventing money laundering or terrorist financing unless any of the exceptions under Regulation 40(5) apply. Under Regulation 41, we are required to provide this information to clients and do so through our Terms and Conditions.
We may make checks using electronic verification systems or other databases as we may decide in order to comply with our obligations under anti-money laundering and counterterrorist financing regulations.
Transferring your personal data out of the EEA
To deliver services to you, it is sometimes necessary for us to share your personal data outside the European Economic Area (EEA), eg:
- With your and our service providers located outside the EEA;
- If you are based outside the EEA;
- Where there is an international dimension to the matter in which we are advising you.
When it is necessary for us to share your personal data outside the EEA, we will take steps to ensure your data is protected to an equivalent standard as within the EEA.
Keeping your personal data secure
We have appropriate security measures to prevent personal data from being accidentally lost, or used or accessed unlawfully. We limit access to your personal data to those who have a genuine business need to access it. Those processing your information will do so only in an authorised manner and are subject to a duty of confidentiality.
We also have procedures in place to deal with any suspected data security breach. We will notify you and any applicable regulator of a suspected data security breach where we are legally required to do so.
If you want detailed information from Get Safe Online on how to protect your information and your computers and devices against fraud, identity theft, viruses and many other online problems, please visit www.getsafeonline.org Get Safe Online is supported by HM Government and leading businesses.
Your access rights
You have the following rights, which you can exercise free of charge:
|The right to be provided with a copy of your personal data
|The right to require us to correct any mistakes in your personal data
|To be forgotten
|The right to require us to delete your personal data – in certain situations
|Restriction of processing
|The right to require us to restrict processing of your personal data – in certain circumstances, eg if you contest the accuracy of the data
|The right to receive the personal data you have provided to us, in a structured, commonly used and machine readable format and/or transmit that data to a third party – in certain situations
|The right to object:
- At any time to your personal data being processed for direct marketing (including profiling);
- In certain other situations to our continued processing of your personal data, eg processing carried out for the purpose of our legitimate interests
|Not to be subjected to automated individual decision-making.
|The right not to be subject to a decision based solely on automated processing (including profiling) that produces legal effects concerning you or similarly significantly affects you
For further information on each of those rights, including the circumstances in which they apply, please contact us or see the Guidance from the UK Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) on individuals’ rights under the General Data Protection Regulation.
If you would like to exercise any of those rights, please:
- Email, call or write to our Data Protection Officer – see below: ‘How to contact us’, and
- Let us have enough information to identify you (eg your full name, address and client or matter reference number), and
- Let us have proof of your identity and address (a copy of your driving licence or passport and a recent utility or credit card bill), and
- Let us know what right you want to exercise and the information to which your request relates.
How to complain
We hope that our Data Protection Officer can resolve any query or concern you may raise about our use of your information.
The General Data Protection Regulation also gives you right to lodge a complaint with a supervisory authority, in particular in the European Union (or European Economic Area) state where you work, normally live or where any alleged infringement of data protection laws occurred. The supervisory authority in the UK is the Information Commissioner who may be contacted at https://ico.org.uk/concerns or telephone: 0303 123 1113.
How to contact us
Our Data Protection Officer’s contact details are shown below:
Mr Carl Csukas
Meridian Private Client Solicitors Limited
Wood Rydings Court
Tel: 01675 444 885