What Are Your Rights After A Lawyer Data Breach?

What are my rights after a lawyer data breach guide

What are my rights after a lawyer data breach claims guide

Have you suffered harm due to a lawyer data breach? Was your personal data breached because of your lawyer’s failure to properly secure it?

According to the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA) and the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR), data controllers or processors who are entrusted with your personal information have a legal obligation to protect it. Data controllers are companies that process your personal data or use a third party to process the data they collect.

An independent authority called the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) upholds data rights for the public and has the power to investigate and fine those who fail to comply with data protection law.

If you believe that you have a valid personal data breach claim, you can contact our team of advisors today by:

Select A Section

  1. What Is A Lawyer Data Breach?
  2. Who Could Claim For A Lawyer Data Breach?
  3. How Much Time Do You Have To File A Claim?
  4. Reporting A Lawyer Data Breach
  5. What Could Compensation Awards Be?
  6. Could You Help Me Make A Claim

What Is A Lawyer Data Breach?

Before we discuss lawyer data breach compensation, it’s important to define what personal data is. According to the UK GDPR and the Data Protection Act, personal data is information that can be used to identify you.  Special category data is a type of personal data that requires extra protection under data protection legislation.

A law firm can usually be classed as a data controller. This means that they control what data they need from you, why they need it, and how they process it. As data controllers, law firms must comply with data protection legislation when handling your personal data. If a lawyer handles your data in a way that breaches data protection law, you may be able to claim.

Our advisors can give you more information on positive wrongful conduct and can tell you if you have a valid claim when you get in touch today.

Who Could Claim For A Lawyer Data Breach?

A lawyer can represent you in cases such as criminal, civil cases or even corporate cases to name but a few. For example, they could act on your behalf when getting a mortgage or they could represent you in a medical negligence claim or personal injury claim.

A personal data breach can be generally described as a security incident that has impacted the confidentiality, availability, or integrity of your personal data. This means that if your personal data is lost, destroyed, altered, or shared accidentally or unlawfully you may be able to make a lawyer data breach claim.

Central to upholding a successful claim for solicitor data breach compensation is the ability to pinpoint where you feel the lawyer may have failed to adequately protect the personal data they held about you, as well as the harm the breach created in your life.

If you can show a failure on the lawyer’s part to adequately protect your personal information, you could have a valid claim. Contact our team of advisors to learn more.

How Much Time Do You Have To File A Claim?

Currently, there is a 6-year time limit for initiating a personal data breach claim against another party. This time scale reduces to 1-year if you intend to claim against a public body, such as a local council.

Reporting A Lawyer Data Breach

A lawyer data breach can happen in a number of ways, from lost or stolen devices to data breaches that have resulted from personal information being sent to the wrong recipient. According to the ICO, an organisation must report a serious data breach within 72 hours. If the breach threatens your freedoms or rights, then they must also inform you as soon as possible.

If you believe your personal data has been compromised in a personal data breach, you can contact the lawyer or law firm for more information. However, if you do not receive a satisfactory reply, you can make a complaint to the ICO yourself. While they cannot provide compensation, they may choose to investigate the breach themselves.

A data breach solicitor can help you gather the evidence you may need to strengthen your lawyer data breach claim, and can talk you through the next steps. To learn more, contact our team of expert advisors today.

What Could Compensation Awards Be?

There are generally two heads of claim you could pursue in a data breach claim. The first is material damage. This head of loss handles any financial harm you may suffer as a result of a lawyer data breach. For example:

  • Credit card theft costs
  • The cost of needing to replace or update devices and laptops
  • Relocation costs in very extreme cases of fraud or identity theft

Non-material damages compensate for the mental health impact. Since the ruling of Vidal-Hall and Others v Google Inc. (2015), you may now claim for non-material damages without claiming for material damages.

The table below shows what you could potentially receive in terms of non-material damages, using figures published in the 2022 edition of the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). While the JCG is usually used in the context of personal injuries, such as accident at work claims, the case Gulati & Others v MGN Limited (2015) allowed psychiatric injuries to be valued in line with these guidelines.

Type of Psychiatric & Psychological Damage JC Guideline Award Supporting Notes
(A) Psychiatric Damage Generally£54,830 to £115,730 - (a) Severe DegreeMarked impact on relationships, work or education with a very poor future prognosis.
(A) Psychiatric Damage Generally£19,070 to £54,830 - (b) Moderately Severe DegreeSignificant issues that leave a permanent or long-standing disability that prevents a return to normal employment
(A) Psychiatric Damage Generally£5,860 to £19,070 - (c) Moderate DegreeA better prognosis by the time the claim may go to trial (not all cases do)
(A) Psychiatric Damage Generally£1,540 to £5,860 - (d) Less Severe DegreeReflects the length of disability and impact on sleep or the cause of a specific phobia
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) £59,860 to £100,670 - (a) Severe DegreeVery serious repercussions in all areas of the person's life
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) £23,150 to £59,860 - (b) Moderately Severe DegreeLesser severity than bracket above with professional help
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) £8,180 to £23,150 - (c) Moderate DegreeLargely recovered with any continuing effects not being too disabling
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) £3,950 to £8,180 - (d) Less Severe DegreeA full recovery with only minor symptoms persisting.

While these guidelines can provide some idea of what you could receive should your claim succeed, it’s important to note that the figures shown are not guaranteed amounts.

Get in touch with our team of advisors today for a free, personalised estimate of what your claim could be worth. Alternatively, read on to find out how one of our personal data breach solicitors could help you.

Could You Help Me Make A Claim?

Data breach claims can be complex and collecting evidence properly takes time and attention. It can be helpful to use legal representation and under a No Win No Fee agreement, there is no upfront solicitor’s fee required.

At Accident Claims, we offer a No Win No Fee service. We provide a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). Under a CFA, you can access legal representation with no upfront cost, and you only pay a success fee if your case succeeds. In this case, the success fee will be taken as a small percentage with a legal cap from your compensation.

If you would like to learn more about how No Win No Fee agreements could help you or have your lawyer data breach claim assessed today, speak to our team through the contact details below. You can:

Other Organisations You Could Make A Data Breach Claim Against

Please see our other data breach claims guides.

Or, for more information on data breaches:

For any more questions about making a lawyer data breach claim, contact our advisors today.