Privacy and Data Protection
This notice explains when and why we collect personal information about you; how we use it, the conditions under which we may disclose it to others and how we keep it secure.
Who are we?
Axis Legal is a trading name of Axis Legal Services Limited (‘we’ or ‘us’) and is a company registered within England and Wales under Company Number 11472070. We are authorised by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) under SRA Number 650693. .
As part of our business we collect and manage client and non-client data. Data is collected, processed and stored by us. In acting in this way we become known as the ‘data controller’ of the personal information you provide to us for the purposes of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).
What information do we collect about you?
Such information includes your name, address, email details, contact numbers and financial information and is known as ‘personal data’. In many circumstances your personal data will be restricted to basic information however; in some instances we may require more sensitive information from you.
How is this information collected?
Information may be collected from a variety of sources; including but not limited to:
- You may volunteer the information about yourself
- If you have authority, you may provide information relating to someone else.
- Information may be provided to us by third parties. Examples of such organisations could be, but is not limited to:
- Banks / building societies.
- Panel providers who allocate legal work to legal firms.
- Organisations that have introduced work to us.
- Medical or financial institutions
- Information collected through website usage, known as ‘cookies’.
Information may be collected using a number of different ways; including but not limited to:
- Through information questionnaires and forms provided at the commencement of your legal matter.
- Following / liking / subscribing to our social media channels.
- Submitting an online enquiry either through our website or through our social media channels.
- Participation in a competitions or promotions we run on our website or on our social media channels.
Whenever we collect your personal data, you will be provided the opportunity to ‘opt in’ to receiving marketing communications from us. We hope you will provide this information so you find our communications useful but if you choose not to this will have no effect on accessing our legal services.
For what purpose is the information used?
- Complete identity checks in compliance with our rules of Professional Conduct and in the interest of fraud prevention.
- Verify source of funds information in compliance with Money Laundering Regulations rules.
- Communicate and develop our relationship with you, provide services to you and respond to enquiries relevant to your legal matter, and honour any contract we have with you.
- Ensure the billing of provided services, obtain payment and store records of all financial transactions we make on your behalf.
- Process and respond to any complaints or allegation of negligence against us.
- Enable us to meet our legal and other regulatory obligations imposed on us.
- Assist in the direct marketing in the services which we provide.
- Provide us with information for review and analysis to assist in modifying and improving our services.
- Assist in analysing the effectiveness of promotional and advertising campaigns.
This information will help us review and improve our products, services and offers.
We will not process sensitive information that includes:
- Physical or mental health details.
- Racial or ethnic origin.
We will seek your permission if we need to record any of your sensitive personal data on our systems.
Any communications with you, including electronic communications such as emails, will be stored on our files for compliance, training and monitoring purposes.
Access to your information
We have a data protection policy in place to oversee the effective and secure processing of your personal data. We will not sell, rent or share your personal data to any third parties for marketing purposes.
Whilst we will only use your information within the operation of our firm there may be circumstances, when carrying out your legal work, that we are required to disclose information to third parties. Such examples may include but are not limited to;
- HM Land Registry to register a property
- HM Revenue & Customs; such as for Stamp Duty Land Tax purposes
- Solicitors/Third Party representatives acting on the other side
- Mutual Third party organisations; such as estate agents or mortgage broker
- Court or Tribunal
- Asking an independent Barrister or Counsel for advice; or to represent you
- Legal and Non-legal experts to obtain advice or assistance
- Translation Agencies
- Contracted Suppliers
- External auditors or our Regulator
- Bank or Building Society; or other financial institutions
- Insurance Companies
- Providers of identity verification
- Any compulsory disclosure required by law or regulation; such as the prevention of financial crime and terrorism
- If there is an emergency and we think you or others are at risk; this will be determined at our discretion.
In the event any of your information is shared with the aforementioned third parties, we ensure that they comply, strictly and confidentially, with our instructions and they do not use your personal information for their own purposes unless you have explicitly consented to them doing so.
There may be some uses of personal data that may require your specific consent. If this is the case we will contact you separately to ask for your consent which you are free to withdraw at any time.
Protection of your personal data
We recognise your personal data is valuable and we take all reasonable measures to protect it whilst it is in our care.
We have excellent standards of technology and operational security in order to protect personal data from loss, misuse, alteration or destruction. We implement a high threshold when it comes to confidentiality obligations and both internal and external parties have agreed to protect confidentiality of all information; to ensure all personal data is handled and processed in line with our stringent confidentiality and data protection policies.
We use computer safeguards such as firewalls and data encryption to restrict electronic access to stored information. We restrict, where possible, physical access to our office building.
Retention of your personal data
Your personal data will be retained, via electronic or manual files, for:
- As long as necessary to carry out your legal work.
- For a minimum of 6 years and a maximum of 15 years from the conclusion or closure of your legal work. This is due to regulatory reasons and to ensure our business records are adequate to maintain the requisite levels of insurance to protect our clients and non-clients.
What are your rights?
Under GDPR you are entitled to the following rights in respect of the personal data we hold relating to you:
Right to be informed
Right To Access
You have the right to ask us for a copy of any personal data that we hold about you. This is known as a “Subject Access Request”. Except in exceptional circumstances (which we would discuss and agree with you in advance), you can obtain this information at no cost. A request for access to your personal data means you are entitled to a copy of the data we hold on you, such as your name, address, contact details, date of birth, , etc. but it does not mean you are entitled to the actual documents that contain this data.
If you wish to make a request please provide this to our offices in writing addressed to the person dealing with or who dealt with your matter.
Right to rectification
Should you consider any personal data we hold to be inaccurate or incomplete you are entitled to request this be you are entitled to request this information be rectified.
Right To Be Forgotten
You can request that we erase all personal data that we hold about you where there is no compelling reason for its continued processing.
This right is applicable only in the following circumstances:
- Where the personal data is no longer necessary in respect of the purpose for which it was originally collected.
- Where consent is relied upon as the lawful basis for holding your data and you withdraw your consent.
- Where you object to the processing and there is no overriding legitimate interest for continuing the processing.
- The personal data was unlawfully processed.
- Where you object to the processing for direct marketing purposes.
Right to object
You have the right to object to processing based on legitimate interests; and direct marketing.
This right is applicable only in the following circumstances:
- An objection to stop processing personal data for direct marketing purposes is absolute. There are no exemptions or grounds to refuse your request.
- You must have an objection on grounds relating to your particular circumstances.
We must stop processing your personal data unless:
- We can show legitimate grounds for the processing which override your interests, rights and/or freedoms.
- The processing is for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims.
Right to restrict processing
In certain circumstances you have the right to request the restriction or suppression of your personal data. When processing is restricted, we can store the data but not use it.
This right only applies in the following circumstances:
- Where you challenge the accuracy of the personal data; in which we should restrict the processing until we have determined the accuracy of the personal data held.
- Where you claim it is necessary in the interest of the general public or for legitimate interests; in which we would consider whether our firm’s legitimate grounds override your right.
- Where processing is or has been unlawful and you request restriction.
We are not aware of any justifiable reasons that would constitute a legitimate reason for objecting or complaining about the way we process or control personal data. However should you have any such concerns or complaints about the ways in which your personal data ir and/or has been handled please contact us in writing.