We collect and use information about you to help solve your problems, improve our services and tackle wider issues in society that affect people’s lives.
We always let you decide what you’re comfortable telling us, explain why we need your information and keep it confidential. When we keep something you tell us, we:
How will you use my data?
First and foremost, your information will be used to provide you with advice. We also use information in a way that doesn’t directly identify you to understand how different problems are affecting society and to act as a result. We do this by setting up new projects to tackle identified needs.
Where you have given us your contact details, we may contact you to ask you for feedback on the service you received and your overall experience of Legal Advice Centre.
Conditions for Processing Data
We are only entitled to hold and process your data where the law allows us to. The current law on data protection sets out a number of different reasons for which we may collect and process your personal data. These include:
The main purpose for our holding your data is to provide you with legal services under the agreement we have with you. This agreement is a contract between us, and the law allows us to process your data for the purposes of performing a contract (or for the steps necessary to enter into a contract).
In specific situations, we require your data to pursue our legitimate interests in a way which might reasonably be expected as part of running the Advice Centre and which does not materially impact your rights, freedom or interests. This may include to satisfy our external quality auditors or our Regulators.
Reasons of substantial public interest
Special category of personal data (ethnicity, religion, health, etc.) is processed for reasons of substantial public interest to ensure equality of opportunity or treatment.
If the law requires us to, we may need to collect and process your data. For example, we can pass on details of people involved in fraud or other criminal activity.
In some limited situations, we can collect and process your data with your consent. You will be able to withdraw your consent at any time where this is the case.
When collecting your personal data, we’ll always make clear to you which data is necessary in connection with a particular service.
Where will you store my data?
The record of your case will be stored securely in an electronic case management system used by the Legal Advice Centre. We are responsible for keeping it safe. As part of solving your problem, we might also make written notes, download copies of your case or send emails containing your information. We will make sure any information is stored securely and only accessed when there’s a good reason by staff and volunteers of the Legal Advice Centre.
How long do you keep records for?
We keep records for 6 years following file closure. We may keep records for up to 16 years if the advice given could have serious consequences if it was not stored for a longer period.
Why might you share my information? Who will you share it with?
We will generally not share information without your permission, unless required to do so by law or in some very limited situations, like to protect you or someone else from serious harm.
Pro Bono Partners
We sometimes share your personal data with our Pro Bono Partners, who are trusted third parties. We only do this where it is necessary for providing you services.
The policy we apply to those organisations to keep your data safe and protect your privacy is as follows:
From time to time the Legal Advice Centre has its files audited by the Legal Aid Agency (on legal aid cases) and Recognising Excellence to obtain our Specialist Quality Mark. This is to ensure it continues to provide a high level of service at all times. In addition, the LAC receives funding from the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, they will occasionally review files for quality purposes and to ensure LAC is providing services in accordance with funding objectives. In these circumstances we have agreements in place to make sure your data is kept secure.
What if I have a question about how my information has been used?
You can contact us and ask us:
If you have any questions about how your information is collected/used, or you are not happy with how we have used your information please contact us.
You can also contact the Information Commissioner’s Office to raise a concern about how we have used your information.
0303 123 1113