M&S Solicitors are duty-bound to keep their clients’ matters completely confidential to comply with their legal obligations under the Data Protection Act and the Solicitors Code of Conduct. We keep all the information we obtain from our clients or potential clients completely confidential and do not disclose to any third party without the written consent of our clients.
When we use your personal data we are regulated under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which applies across the European Union (including in the United Kingdom) and we are responsible as ‘controller’ of that personal data for the purposes of the GDPR. Our use of your personal data is subject to your instructions, the GDPR, other relevant UK and EU legislation and our professional duty of confidentiality.
How your personal data is collected
We collect most of this information from you direct. However, we may also collect information:
How and why we use your personal data
Under data protection law, we can only use your personal data if we have a proper reason for doing so, eg:
A legitimate interest is when we have a business or commercial reason to use your information, so long as this is not overridden by your own rights and interests.
Who we share your personal data with
We routinely share personal data with:
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 relating 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.
We will not share your personal data with any other third party.
Where your personal data is held
Information may be held at our offices, third party agencies, service providers, representatives and agents as described above (see ‘Who we share your personal data with’).
Some of these third parties may be based outside the European Economic Area. For more information, including on how we safeguard your personal data when this occurs, see below: ‘Transferring your personal data out of the EEA’.
How long your personal data will be kept
We will keep your personal data after we have finished advising or acting for you. We will do so for one of these reasons:
We will not retain your data for longer than necessary for the purposes set out in this policy. Different retention periods apply for different types of data. Further details on this are available in our client care letter/terms of business.
When it is no longer necessary to retain your personal data, we will delete or anonymise it.
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:
These transfers are subject to special rules under European and UK data protection law.
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.
How to complain
We hope that we 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