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Legal Services Privacy Notice

Privacy Notice

We ask that you read this privacy notice carefully as it contains important information on who we are, how and why we collect, store, use and share personal information, your rights in relation to your personal information and on how to contact us and supervisory authorities in the event you have a complaint.

Who we are

The Legal Services Department at Dorset Council, collects, uses and is responsible for certain personal information about you.

When we do so we are regulated under the General Data Protection Regulation which applies across the European Union (including in the United Kingdom) and we are responsible as ‘controller’ of that personal information for the purposes of those laws.

The personal information we collect

Information collected by us

We will not routinely collect data, due to the nature of the services we provide, it is most probable that your data will have been acquired by one of the other service departments within Dorset Council, for example if we are advising on a planning matter then your data may be passed over from our planning department, if we are advising on a housing matter then your data may be passed over from our housing department.

On occasion we may be the first point of contact that you have, in these circumstances we may collect some or all of the information listed below. We will ensure that we only collect the information required for us to deal with the matter.

  • current and former name, telephone number, e-mail address, address
  • medical information, banking details, criminal record
  • copies of identity documents, national insurance number
  • account information, transaction history, complaints

Information collected from other sources

We also obtain personal information from other sources as follows:

  • we anticipate that we will routinely receive personal information from the service departments within Dorset Council that we support and advise
  • we may obtain personal information from public sources such as the electoral roll, social media, public directories etc
  • we may also receive information from other government agencies or departments relevant to the matter that we are advising on

How we use your personal information

We use your personal information in order to progress the matter that we are working on e.g. exercising or defending a court action involving Dorset Council, or advising Dorset Council on the transfer of land, or in order to exercise a function required of us, e.g. in order to deal with complaints received by our Monitoring Officer, or to take enforcement action where deemed appropriate.

Where the matter we are advising on is escalated from one of our service departments, we will ensure that, to the fullest extent possible, that your data is processed in accordance with that department’s privacy notice.

Who we share your personal information with

Where necessary, to enable us to progress that matter that we are working on, we may need to share information with other departments within Dorset Council and other local authorities, other agencies of local or national government, external lawyers and other appropriate advisers. This list is intended to be demonstrative rather than conclusive.

We do not anticipate that our data-transferring arrangements will involve a transfer outside of the European Economic Area (EEA).

On occasion we may be required to share personal information with law enforcement or other authorities if required by applicable law. Where this occurs we will attempt to ensure that appropriate safeguards are in place.

Whether information has to be provided by you, and if so why

There are limited circumstances where you must provide us with information; where there is a legal obligation to provide this information we will advise you of the same along with the consequences of failing to provide this.

In all other circumstances the information we obtain is necessary for the matter that we are dealing with, if you fail to provide information that is required then we may not be able to provide a service, or it may take longer to perform that service.

How long your personal information will be kept

We will hold the personal data provided by you until the matter is concluded. We will also retain your personal data where we have an obligation to do so, that obligation may be specific to the matter or service that we are advising, alternatively it may an obligation of our service, in all circumstances the person handling the matter will be able to advise you of this correct retention period for each specific matter upon request.

Reasons for collecting and using your personal information

As a local authority we rely largely upon public task as the lawful basis for processing your personal data. We also commonly rely on contract and legitimate interest as the bases for processing your data. The nature of processing may change from task to task if you would like to know then this can be obtained by asking our member of staff who is responsible for that matter.

Your rights

Under the General Data Protection Regulation you have a number of important rights that may be exercised free of charge. In summary, those include rights to:

  • fair processing of information and transparency over how we use your use personal information
  • access to your personal information and to certain other supplementary information that this Privacy Notice is already designed to address
  • require us to correct any mistakes in your information which we hold
  • require the erasure of personal information concerning you in certain situations
  • receive the personal information concerning you which you have provided to us, in a structured, commonly used and machine-readable format and have the right to transmit those data to a third party in certain situations
  • object at any time to processing of personal information concerning you for direct marketing
  • object in certain other situations to our continued processing of your personal information
  • otherwise restrict our processing of your personal information in certain circumstances

For further information on each of those rights you can visit the Information Commissioner's Office

If you would like to exercise any of those rights, please contact our Data Protection Office

In order that we can comply with such a request as soon as possible, it would be useful if you could provide the following information within your initial request:

  • let us have enough information to identify you (eg reference, account number, user name, registration details),
  • 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 the information to which your request relates

Keeping your personal information secure

We have appropriate security measures in place to prevent personal information from being accidentally lost, or used or accessed in an unauthorised way. We limit access to your personal information to those who have a genuine business need to know 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 would like to find out more about protecting your personal information, please visit Get Safe Onlinewhich is supported by HM Government and leading businesses.

How to complain

We hope that our Data Protection Officer can resolve any query or concern you raise about our use of your information.

The General Data Protection Regulation also gives you right to lodge a complaint with a supervisory authority. The supervisory authority in the UK is the Information Commissioner telephone: 0303 123 1113.

Changes to this privacy notice

This privacy notice was published on 1 April 2019. There are no amendments since publication, when amendments are made to this page we will update this section. We recommend that you review this section from time to time so that you are aware of the latest version of this notice.

How to contact us

Please contact our Data Protection Officer if you have any questions about this privacy notice or the information we hold about you.

Do you need extra help?

If you would like this notice in another format (for example: audio, large print, braille) please contact our Data Protection Officer.

Your feedback

This form is to report content that is wrong, or any issues or feedback you have about the web page.

Contact us if you want to get in touch about a council service instead.

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This helps us direct your feedback to the appropriate council.

General data protection regulation (GDPR)

We will only use the personal information supplied by you in accordance with GDPR. By giving us this information you are consenting to such use as set out in our privacy notice.