Terms and Conditions

Terms and Conditions of business

THE FIRM

 


Partners:

 

Keith Butler

Judith Morris

Simon Bird

Jeremy Bird

Michael Thompson

 

Associate Solicitors:

 

Stefano Rabaiotti

Angela Jones

Suzannah Watkins

Kate Phillips

 

Consultants:

 

Peter Williams

(Non-Practising)

Maredudd Davies

 

Trainee Solicitor:

 

Macsen Williams

 

Paralegals:

 

Hayley Lavis

Lyndsey Price

Kay Smith

 

Duty Solicitors:

 

Jeremy Bird

Maredudd Davies

 

Accredited Police Station Representative:

 

Hayley Lavis

 

 

ACCREDITATION SCHEME MEMBERSHIP

 

We are contracted to the Legal Aid Agency.  The firm has members of the following Solicitors Regulation Authority Accreditation Schemes.

 

Probate Section:             Keith Butler

Personal Injury:              Simon Bird

Advanced Family Law:   Judith Morris

Children:                         Angela Jones

                                        Suzannah Watkins

 

We also have members of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers, the Solicitors’ Family Law Association and the National Association of Lawyers for Children.

As a firm, we are accredited under the Law Society’s Conveyancing Quality Scheme and Wills and Inheritance Quality Scheme.


OUR HOURS OF BUSINESS

 

Our offices are open from 9.00 am until 1.00 pm and 1.30 pm until 5.00 pm from Monday to Friday.  Members of our criminal law team are available out of hours when necessary.

 

 

COMMUNICATION BETWEEN YOU AND US

 

Our aim is to offer all our clients an efficient service at all times.  We hope that you will be pleased with the work we do for you.  However, should there be any aspect of our service with which you are unhappy, please raise your concern in the first place with Simon Bird.

 

 

OUR COMMITMENT TO YOU

 

We will: -    Provide quality legal advice with a personal service at a fair cost

 

Represent your interests and keep your business confidential

Explain to you the legal work which may be required and the prospects of successful outcome

Make sure that you understand the likely degree of financial risk which you will be taking on

 Advise you what methods of funding your legal costs may be available to you

Keep you regularly informed of progress or, if there is none, tell you when you are next likely to hear from us

Try to avoid using technical legal language when writing to you - tell us if we fail in this aim

Deal with your queries promptly

 

AUTHORISATIONS

 

By instructing Marchant Harries to act on your behalf you authorise us to communicate with you by Royal Mail post at your designated address and by telephone to the number you provide to us and by email to your email address.  You understand that it is your responsibility to inform us in writing if your address or telephone number(s) or email address change.

 

You also authorise us to communicate with all other third parties in connection with your case by Royal Mail post, email, fax and telephone.

 

CHARGES AND EXPENSES

 

Unless we have agreed a fixed fee with you, our charges will be calculated mainly by reference to the time actually spent by the solicitors and other staff in working for you.  This will include meetings with you and perhaps others, reading and working on papers, correspondence, telephone calls, instructing experts and Counsel and also time spent in travelling when this is necessary.

 

The current standard hourly rates are set out below. These rates are the same as the rates for 2010 set by the Advisory Committee on Civil Costs for application by the Civil Courts in this area when assessing solicitors’ costs.  We will add VAT to these at the rate which applies when the work is done.  At present VAT is 20%.


Rates

Partners and solicitors of 8 + years experience and panel members              £201

Solicitors of 4 + years’ experience                                                                    £177

Other solicitors and paralegals                                                                          £146

All other fee earners                                                                                          £111

 

We will charge you at the rates set out above for work done on your behalf by this firm.  Routine letters out and telephone calls will be charged at 1/10th of the appropriate hourly rate.  Longer letters and telephone calls will be charged on a timed basis.   Where travel is involved we also charge travelling expenses at the rate of 45p + VAT per mile for car use and reclaim train, taxi and air fares + VAT where they are incurred.

 

These hourly rates have to be reviewed periodically to reflect increases in overhead costs and inflation.  These rates apply from 1st April 2010 until they are next reviewed.  If a review is carried out before this matter has been concluded, we will inform you of any variation in the rate before it takes effect.

 

In particularly difficult or complex cases we may ask you to agree a higher charging rate.   In deciding whether a higher rate should apply, we may take into account a number of factors including any need to carry out work outside our normal office hours, the complexity of the issues, the monetary value, the speed at which action has to be taken and any particular specialist expertise which the case may demand.

 

If we enter into a conditional fee agreement (CFA) with you, different charging arrangements will apply and they will be set out in a separate document which we will also ask you to sign.  The remainder of these Terms and Conditions will still apply. If there is any inconsistency between these Terms and Conditions and a CFA, the CFA will prevail.

 

Solicitors may make various payments on behalf of clients such as Land or Probate Registry fees, court fees, expert's fees and so on.  We have no obligation to make such payments unless you have provided us with the funds for the purpose.  We refer to such payments generally as 'disbursements'.  VAT may be payable on some disbursements

 

If, for any reason, this matter does not proceed to a conclusion, we will still be entitled to charge you for work done and disbursements paid up to the date we stop working for you.  In matters which take a long time, we reserve the right to render bills (“interim bills”) at six-monthly intervals.  Payment of an interim bill does not affect your right to challenge the whole bill at the conclusion of the matter.

 

PAYMENT ARRANGEMENTS

 

Cash

 

For reasons of security, staff safety, insurance, and to avoid any possible Money Laundering issues we are unable to accept substantial sums in cash.  Payments in excess of £250 must be made by cheque, bankers draft or credit transfer.  This includes payments made direct into the firm's bank accounts.  Payments in excess of £250, whether made "over the counter" or direct into our accounts, may be the subject of such additional checks as we decide necessary to prove the source of the funds.

 

Credit/ Debit Cards

We are able to accept payment by most credit and debit cards apart from American Express.  We are charged by the provider for this service and for credit card payments the charge is a percentage of the payment.  As from 13/01/2018 we will no longer be passing this charge on to the client.

 

Credit and Debit Card payments take several days to clear through the banking system and we cannot make payments to others from uncleared funds.  This means that we must ask you to make card payments at least 5 working days before the funds are needed.  If you fail to do so this may lead to delay in completing transactions and you may be charged interest by the other party.

 

Our card services provider does not permit us to take payments by card except in respect of or on account of the firm’s costs, disbursements and VAT.  We are unable to accept any other funds by card.

 

Cheques & Bankers’ Drafts

 

Cheques and Bankers’ Drafts take several days to clear through the banking system and we cannot make payments to others from uncleared funds.  Unless you are able to make payment by a CHAPS transfer, which is treated as an immediately cleared payment, we must ask you to let us have necessary funds at least 5 working days before they are needed.  If you fail to do so this may lead to delay in completing transactions and you may be charged interest by the other party.

 

Property transactions

 

We may send you our bill following the exchange of contracts and payment will then be required before completion on a purchase and at completion on a sale.  If sufficient funds are available on completion, and we have sent you a bill, we will deduct what is owed from the money we are holding.

 

Other cases

 

It is normal practice to ask clients to pay sums of money from time to time on account of the charges and expenses which are expected in the following weeks or months.  We find that this helps clients in budgeting for costs as well as keeping them informed of the legal expenses which are being incurred.  If such requests are not met with prompt payment, delay in the progress of a case may result.  In the unlikely event of any bill or request for payment not being met, we reserve the right to stop acting for you.

 

Credit terms

 

Payment is due to us within 28 days of our sending you a bill.  If payment is not made within 28 days we will charge interest on any outstanding balance on a daily basis at the rate of interest allowed by the courts on outstanding debts.  The rate is currently 7%.  Interest will run from the date of the bill.

 

 

 

Payments to you

 

For cost and security reasons, we prefer to make payments of money due to you by bank transfer rather than by cheque.  Our bankers require us to verify recipient’s bank details by seeing copy bank statements or debit cards.  We will not transfer funds to you electronically on the basis of account details supplied to us by email.

 

 

COSTS, CHARGES AND EXPENSES

 

In some cases, you may become entitled to have your costs paid by some other person.  For example, in court cases, the losing party is usually ordered to pay the winning party’s costs.  It is important that you understand that, in the first instance, you are personally liable to pay our charges and expenses. Any amounts which are recovered from another party will be applied towards your bill or, if you have already paid in full, refunded to you.  It is unusual for the other person to be required to pay all the charges and expenses which you incur with us. If the other party is legally aided no costs are likely to be recovered from him.

 

If you are successful and a court orders another party to pay some or all of your charges and expenses, interest can be claimed on any outstanding balance from the date of the court order.  We will account to you for such interest to the extent that you have paid our charges or expenses on account, but we are entitled to the rest of the interest.

 

You will also be responsible for paying our charges and expenses in seeking to recover any costs that the court orders the other party to pay to you.

 

A client who is unsuccessful in a court case may be ordered to pay the other party's legal charges and expenses.  That money would be payable in addition to our charges and expenses.  In some cases, insurance can be obtained to cover your liability for such legal expenses.  Please discuss this with us if you are interested in this possibility.

 

If you are unhappy about the amount of our bill you have certain rights to challenge it although the fact that we have agreed a charging rate or a fixed fee may limit those rights.  You should raise your concerns with the fee earner or the Supervising Partner named on the first page of these terms and conditions.  You may also have the right to object to our bill by making a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman (for his contact details see the Complaints and Concerns section below), and/or by applying to the court for an assessment of the bill under Part III of the Solicitors Act 1974.  Please note that if all or part of a bill remains unpaid the firm may be entitled to charge interest.  If necessary, we will explain the procedures to you in more detail.

 

 

IDENTIFICATION

 

Under the Money Laundering Regulations 2007 we may be required to obtain proof of identification from you before transactions can proceed.  To comply with these requirements for personal clients, we may have to ask you to produce certain documents for examination such as a passport, driving licence, or utility bill.  For company clients, we may have to examine other documents as well.  The regulations require us to take copies of the documents we examine and to retain those copies for at least five years after the transaction has been completed.  We may also carry out searches against you using an e-verification service.  The fee earner dealing with your case will explain the procedures to you.

 

 

CONFIDENTIALITY

 

Solicitors are under a professional and legal obligation to keep the affairs of clients confidential. This obligation, however, is subject to statutory exceptions: recent legislation on money laundering and terrorist financing has placed solicitors under a legal duty in certain circumstances to disclose information to the National Criminal Intelligence Service. Where a solicitor knows or suspects that a transaction on behalf of a client involves money laundering, the solicitor may be required to make a money laundering disclosure. If this happens, we may have to stop working for you for a period but will not be able to tell you why.  The law prohibits “tipping-off” so we will not be able to tell you if we have made a disclosure or of the reasons for it.

 

We may also be acting for your proposed lender - for example, a Bank or a Building Society - in your transaction.  We have a duty to fully reveal to your lender all relevant facts about the purchase and mortgage. This includes reporting any differences between your mortgage application and information we receive during the transaction and telling the lender about any cash back payments or discount schemes that a seller is giving you.  Your signature to these terms and condition confirms that you agree to our reporting matters to your lender.

 

 

BANKING, INTEREST PAYMENTS AND COMMISSIONS

 

Usually, money received on your behalf other than in respect of our costs will be held in our Client Accounts at Lloyds Bank plc.  We will account to you on request for interest in excess of £20 accrued in that account.  If it is likely that the money will be held for some time, we will place it in our client deposit account with the Bank of Scotland and all interest earned will be credited to you.  If you wish us to deal with your funds in any other way you must tell us.

 

Where a client borrows money to finance a property transaction, we will ask the lender to ensure that the loan cheque is received by us a minimum of 4 working days prior to the completion date.  If the money can be transferred through the CHAPS system, i.e. by bank to bank transfer, we will request that we receive it the day before completion.  This will ensure that the necessary cleared funds are available in time for completion.  You should be aware that the lender will charge interest from the date of issue of the loan cheque or the transfer of funds through the banking system.

 

We may receive commission payments from third parties while dealing with your affairs.  Unless we agree with you otherwise, such commissions belong to you and not to us.  We are entitled to use commissions received to pay any sums which you may owe us.  Any surplus is due to you.

In the event of a banking failure it is unlikely that we will be held liable for any losses which you may suffer.  The Financial Services Compensation Scheme applies to money which we hold for personal clients and will compensate you for up to £75,000 in losses. If you hold other monies in your own right in the same deposit-taking institution, the limit remains £75,000 in total.

 

Corporate clients which are not considered by FSCS to be small companies are not eligible for compensation.

 

We consider that the banks which hold our client funds are unlikely to fail.  Nevertheless, funds are held by us on the understanding that any amounts in excess of the FSCS limit are deposited at your risk and not ours.  If you wish us to make other arrangements in respect of funds held on your behalf, please speak to the fee earner who is dealing with your matter.

 

 

 

TAX ADVICE

 

Any work that we do for you may involve tax implications or require the consideration of tax planning strategies.  We may not be qualified to advise you on the actual or potential tax implications of a transaction which you instruct us to carry out for you.  If you have any concerns in this respect, please raise them with us immediately.  If we are able to, we will advise you.  If we cannot do so, we may be able to refer you to an appropriate advisor.  In the case of business clients, we assume that you will have discussed taxation and any other financial issues with your accountants.

 

FINANCIAL SERVICES

 

We do not give investment advice or advice about life insurance policies as these are specialist areas.  If you wish us to do so, we will refer you to specialist independent financial advisors.  In cases where a member of the firm is an executor or trustee and we are holding funds for a trust which is likely to continue for a number of years, we routinely obtain investment advice from independent financial advisors. The cost of obtaining this advice is chargeable to the trust concerned.

 

While we are not specifically authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority, we are included on the register maintained by the Financial Conduct Authority so that we can carry on “insurance mediation activity”, which is broadly the advising on, selling and administration of insurance contracts other than life insurance. We are not allowed to give you any advice at all about life insurance policies.

 

We are subject to the Solicitors Financial Services Rules 2001-2007 (“the Rules”) in relation to mortgages and a wide range of insurances including property insurance, insurance in support of conditional fee agreements, and defective title insurance.  This part of our business, including arrangements for complaints or redress if something goes wrong, is regulated by The Solicitors Regulation Authority. The register can be accessed via the Financial Conduct Authority website at www.fca.org.uk.

 

If our work for you involves dealing with mortgages or “insurance mediation activity” we will give you more detailed advice.  In general terms, we will not advise you to take up a particular mortgage or insurance policy unless we are satisfied that the particular product is one which meets your requirements.  However, since we are not registered financial advisers or insurance brokers, we are not in a position to advise whether the product offered is the only one available or if it offers the best value for money.  The Rules allow us to only endorse recommendations made by a registered adviser or broker and/or to confirm that a particular mortgage or policy being offered is one which meets your needs. 

 

Under Appendix 1 of the Rules, we confirm that we will not conduct a “fair analysis” of the market in relation to any insurance policy which may be offered to you. We are not contractually obliged to conduct insurance mediation activities in that way.  We have dealings with some insurance companies in particular in relation to defective title indemnity polices and policies in support of conditional fee agreements.  You can request details of those insurance undertakings if you want them and we will provide you with such details on request.

 

The Law Society is a designated professional body for the purposes of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 but responsibility for regulation and complaints handling has been separated from The Law Society’s representative functions.  The Solicitors Regulation Authority is the independent regulatory body of The Law Society and the Legal Ombudsman is the independent complaints handling body.

 

 

DATA STORAGE AND SECURITY

 

This firm and the suppliers below mentioned are appropriately licensed under the Data Protection Act 1988 and is also regulated under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which applies across the European Union (including the United Kingdom) and we are responsible as a “controller” of that personal data for the purpose of the regulations. 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.

 

All active paper files are stored at our offices.  All of our archived paper-based files are stored with a records management company at a secure offsite location covered by CCTV and manned by 24-hour onsite security staff.  When a suitable period has elapsed, archived files are securely shredded.  All paper documents which are not required are also securely destroyed.  No paper containing client details is disposed of in normal waste or recycling unless first put through a cross cut shredder.

 

After completing the work, we are entitled to keep all your papers and documents while there is money owing to us for our charges and expenses.  In addition, we will keep your file of papers for you in storage for not less than 1 year.  After that, storage is on the clear understanding that we have the right to destroy your file after such period as we consider reasonable or to make a charge for storage if we ask you to collect your papers and you fail to do so.  We will not of course destroy any documents such as Wills, Deeds and other securities which you ask us to hold in safe custody.  No charge will be made to you for such storage unless prior notice in writing is given to you of a charge to be made from a future date which may be specified in that notice.

 

All electronic documents are kept onsite.  Access to our computers requires an appropriate password.  Data are backed up daily to onsite servers to allow quick recovery if one or more of our computers fail.  The servers are backed up overnight onto disk storage which is removed and stored securely offsite.  We regularly test restore the back-ups.

 

The only electronic data stored offsite is on our accounts system which is cloud based.  Our accounts software supplier, whom we have used since 1992, stores data on secure servers at two separate locations within the UK.  No data are stored outside the UK.  The supplier undertakes that the offsite data centres are compliant to ISO27001:2005.  All the data on the primary servers are regularly backed up to the secondary servers at the alternate location.  The data centres themselves are protected by perimeter fences with a fully manned gatehouse at the entrance, alarms, internal security centre and CCTV.  Entrance to the centre is limited to authorised personnel with access passes.  Network security is high, multi-layered and fully updated and tested regularly.  Administration access is limited to trusted network administrators and passwords are changed regularly.

 

If we retrieve papers or documents from storage in relation to continuing or new instructions to act in connection with your affairs, we may make a small retrieval charge.  We may also make a charge based on time spent in producing or copying stored papers or documents for you or someone else at your request or for reading, correspondence or other work necessary to comply with your instructions.

 

Please refer to the Marchant Harries Privacy Policy on our website for additional information.

 

TERMINATION AND CANCELLATION

 

You may terminate your instructions to us in writing at any time but we will be entitled to keep all your papers and documents while there is money owing to us for charges and expenses.  If at any stage you do not wish us to continue doing work and/or incurring charges and expenses on your behalf, you must tell us this clearly in writing.  If we decide to stop acting for you, for example because you have not paid an interim bill or complied with a request for a payment on account, we will tell you the reason and give you notice in writing.

 

If our agreement is an “off-premises contract” within the meaning of The Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013, you will also have rights of cancellation.  We will advise you about this and give you formal notification when appropriate.

If our agreement is an “off-premises contract”, we cannot normally start work for you until the 14-day cancellation period has expired.  If, for any reason, you instruct us to carry out work on your behalf during the cancellation period and then you cancel the contract, we are entitled to be paid for any work done in the period between receipt of your initial instructions and receipt of your cancellation notice.

 

 

LIMITED COMPANIES

 

When accepting instructions to act on behalf of a limited company, we may require a Director and/or controlling shareholder to sign a form of personal guarantee in respect of the charges and expenses of this firm.  If such a request is refused, we will be entitled to stop acting and to require immediate payment of our charges on an hourly basis and expenses as set out earlier.

 

 

TERMS AND CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS

 

Unless otherwise agreed, and subject to the application of the then current hourly rates, these Terms and Conditions of Business will apply to any future instructions given by you to this firm except in relation to criminal matters, for which we have different terms and conditions.  We are sending you two copies of this document.  Although your continuing instructions in this matter will amount to an acceptance of these Terms and Conditions of Business, it may not be possible for us to start work on your behalf until one copy has been returned to us for us to keep on your file.

 

 

COMPLAINTS AND CONCERNS

 

If you have any concerns about the way in which we are dealing with your matter or about our bill, please raise them with the fee earner in the first place.  If you are not happy with his/her response, please ask for the matter to be referred to the Client Care Partner, Simon Bird, or if he is dealing your matter, to the Alternate Client Care Partner, Jeremy Bird. The fee earner dealing with your matter will supply you with a copy of our complaints procedure on request.

 

If you make a complaint, we will confirm to you in writing how the complaint will be handled and within what timescales you will be given an initial and/or substantive response.   If we are unable to resolve your complaint within eight weeks or you are still dissatisfied at the conclusion of our complaints procedure you have the right to complain to the Legal Ombudsman and must normally do so within six months.  His office is at PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ and the telephone number is 0300 555 0333.  The website is at www.legalombudsman.org.uk.

 

The Legal Ombudsman will investigate matters referred to him within six months of your receiving our final response to your complaint but in general he cannot investigate acts or omissions which occurred more than six years ago unless you could not reasonably have known there was cause for complaint less than three years ago.  He cannot currently look at matters which arose or came to your notice before 6th October 2010.

 

PROVISION OF SERVICES REGULATIONS 2009

 

The following information is supplied to you under Regulation 8 of the regulations: -

Our business name is “Marchant Harries”. The firm is a partnership constituted under the Partnership Act 1890.  The partners in the firm are Keith Butler, Judith Morris, Simon Bird, Jeremy Bird and Michael Thompson.

 

The firm has two offices.  The principal office is at 17-19 Cardiff Street Aberdare CF44 7DP and the telephone number is 01685 885500.  The firm has a branch office at 40/41 High Street, Hirwaun, Aberdare CF44 9SW (tel no 01685 813655).  Any of the partners may be contacted by email at email addresses in the form [firstname][lastname]@marchantharries.co.uk.

 

We are regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and our practice reference is 52752.  The SRA can be contacted at 199 Wharfside Street, Birmingham B1 1RN (tel no 0870 606 2555) or via its website at www.sra.org.uk.  The website contains details of all our professional conduct rules and regulations. We are also regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and our practice references are 52752 & 52753.  We are an “exempt professional firm”.  The FCA can be contacted at 25 The North Colonnade, Canary Wharf, London E14 5HS (tel no 020 7066 1000) or via its website at www.fca.org.uk.

 

We are registered for VAT.  Our registration number is 133 7587 54.

 

The SRA requires us to have professional indemnity insurance cover of at least £2 million with a recognised insurer.  Our current insurers are International General Insurance Company Limited whose registered office is at Forum House, 15-18 Lime Street, London, EC34 7AN and the policy covers any legal services which we provide whether in England and Wales or elsewhere in the world.

Privacy Policy of Marchant Harries

We take your privacy very seriously. Please read this privacy policy carefully as it contains important information on who we are and how and why we collect, store, use and share your personal data. It also explains your rights in relation to your personal data and how to contact us or supervisory authorities in the event you have a complaint.

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.

Key terms

It would be helpful to start by explaining some key terms used in this policy:

We, us, our

Marchant Harries

Personal data

Any information relating to an identified or identifiable individual

Special category personal data

Personal data revealing racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, religious beliefs, philosophical beliefs or trade union membership

Genetic and biometric data

Data concerning health, sex life or sexual orientation

 

Personal data we collect about you

The table below sets out the personal data we will or may collect in the course of advising and/or acting for you.

Personal data we will collect

Personal data we may collect depending on why you have instructed us

Your name, address and telephone number

Information to enable us to check and verify your identity, eg your date of birth or passport details

Electronic contact details, eg your email address and mobile phone number

Information relating to the matter in which you are seeking our advice or representation

Information to enable us to undertake a credit or other financial checks on you

Your financial details so far as relevant to your instructions, eg the source of your funds if you are instructing on a purchase transaction

Information about your use of our IT, communication and other systems, and other monitoring information, eg if using our secure online client portal

Your National Insurance and tax details

Your bank and/or building society details

Details of your professional online presence, eg LinkedIn profile

Details of your spouse/partner and dependants or other family members, eg if you instruct us on a family matter or a will

Your employment status and details including salary and benefits, eg if you instruct us on matter related to your employment or in which your employment status or income is relevant

Your nationality and immigration status and information from related documents, such as your passport or other identification, and immigration information, eg if you instruct us on an immigration matter

Details of your pension arrangements, eg if you instruct us on a pension matter or in relation to financial arrangements following breakdown of a relationship

Your employment records including, where relevant, records relating to sickness and attendance, performance, disciplinary, conduct and grievances (including relevant special category personal data), eg if you instruct us on matter related to your employment or in which your employment records are relevant

Your racial or ethnic origin, gender and sexual orientation, religious or similar beliefs, eg if you instruct us on discrimination claim

Your trade union membership, eg if you instruct us on discrimination claim or your matter is funded by a trade union

Personal identifying information, such as your eye colour or your parents’ names, eg if you instruct us to incorporate a company for you

Your medical records, eg if we are acting for you in a personal injury claim

 

 

This personal data is required to enable us to provide our service to you. If you do not provide personal data we ask for, it may delay or prevent us from providing services to you.

How your personal data is collected

We collect most of this information from you direct.  However, we may also collect information:

•         from publicly accessible sources, eg Companies House or HM Land Registry;

•         directly from a third party, eg:

–         sanctions screening providers;

–         credit reference agencies;

–         client due diligence providers;

•         from a third party with your consent, eg:

–         your bank or building society, another financial institution or advisor;

–         consultants and other professionals we may engage in relation to your matter;

–         your employer and/or trade union, professional body or pension administrators;

–         your doctors, medical and occupational health professionals;

•         via our website—we use cookies on our website (for more information on cookies, please see our insert link cookies policy)

•         via our information technology (IT) systems, eg:

–         case management, document management and time recording systems;

–         door entry systems and reception logs;

–         automated monitoring of our websites and other technical systems, such as our computer networks and connections, CCTV and access control systems, communications systems, email and instant messaging systems;

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:

•         to comply with our legal and regulatory obligations;

•         for the performance of our contract with you or to take steps at your request before entering into a contract;

•         for our legitimate interests or those of a third party; or

•         where you have given consent.

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.

The table below explains what we use (process) your personal data for and our reasons for doing so:

What we use your personal data for

Our reasons

To provide legal services to you

For the performance of our contract with you or to take steps at your request before entering into a contract

Conducting checks to identify our clients and verify their identity

Screening for financial and other sanctions or embargoes

Other processing necessary to comply with professional, legal and regulatory obligations that apply to our business, eg under health and safety regulation or rules issued by our professional regulator

To comply with our legal and regulatory obligations

Gathering and providing information required by or relating to audits, enquiries or investigations by regulatory bodies

To comply with our legal and regulatory obligations

Ensuring business policies are adhered to, eg policies covering security and internet use

For our legitimate interests or those of a third party, ie to make sure we are following our own internal procedures so we can deliver the best service to you

Operational reasons, such as improving efficiency, training and quality control

For our legitimate interests or those of a third party, ie to be as efficient as we can so we can deliver the best service for you at the best price

Ensuring the confidentiality of commercially sensitive information

For our legitimate interests or those of a third party, ie to protect our intellectual property and other commercially valuable information

To comply with our legal and regulatory obligations

Statistical analysis to help us manage our practice, eg in relation to our financial performance, client base, work type or other efficiency measures

For our legitimate interests or those of a third party, ie to be as efficient as we can so we can deliver the best service for you at the best price

Preventing unauthorised access and modifications to systems

For our legitimate interests or those of a third party, ie to prevent and detect criminal activity that could be damaging for us and for you

To comply with our legal and regulatory obligations

Updating and enhancing client records

For the performance of our contract with you or to take steps at your request before entering into a contract

To comply with our legal and regulatory obligations

For our legitimate interests or those of a third party, eg making sure that we can keep in touch with our clients about existing and new services

Statutory returns

To comply with our legal and regulatory obligations

Ensuring safe working practices, staff administration and assessments

To comply with our legal and regulatory obligations

For our legitimate interests or those of a third party, eg to make sure we are following our own internal procedures and working efficiently so we can deliver the best service to you

Marketing our services and those of selected third parties  to:

—existing and former clients;

—third parties who have previously expressed an interest in our services;

—third parties with whom we have had no previous dealings.

For our legitimate interests or those of a third party, ie to promote our business to existing and former clients

Credit reference checks via external credit reference agencies

For our legitimate interests or a those of a third party, ie for credit control and to ensure our clients are likely to be able to pay for our services

External audits and quality checks, eg for Lexcel, SQM, ISO or Investors in People accreditation and the audit of our accounts

For our legitimate interests or a those of a third party, ie to maintain our accreditations so we can demonstrate we operate at the highest standards

To comply with our legal and regulatory obligations

 

The above table does not apply to special category personal data, which we will only process with your explicit consent.

Promotional communications

We may use your personal data to send you updates (by email, text message, telephone or post) about legal developments that might be of interest to you and/or information about our services, including exclusive offers, promotions or new services.

We have a legitimate interest in processing your personal data for promotional purposes (see above ‘How and why we use your personal data’). This means we do not usually need your consent to send you promotional communications. However, where consent is needed, we will ask for this consent separately and clearly.

We will always treat your personal data with the utmost respect and never sell OR shareit with other organisations Marchant Harries for marketing purposes.

You have the right to opt out of receiving promotional communications at any time by:

•         contacting us by (see “How to contact us” below)

We may ask you to confirm or update your marketing preferences if you instruct us to provide further services in the future, or if there are changes in the law, regulation, or the structure of our business.

Who we share your personal data with

We routinely share personal data with:

•         professional advisers who we instruct on your behalf or refer you to, eg barristers, medical professionals, accountants, tax advisors or other experts;

•         other third parties where necessary to carry out your instructions, eg your mortgage provider or HM Land Registry in the case of a property transaction or Companies House;

•         credit reference agencies;

•         our insurers and brokers;

•         external auditors, eg in relation to ISO, SQM or Lexcel accreditation and the audit of our accounts;

•         our banks;

•         external service suppliers, representatives and agents that we use to make our business more efficient, eg typing services, marketing agencies, document collation or analysis suppliers;

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 and those of our 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:

•         to respond to any questions, complaints or claims made by you or on your behalf;

•         to show that we treated you fairly;

•         to keep records required by law.

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.

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:

•         with your and our service providers located outside the EEA;

•         if you are based outside the EEA;

•         where there is an international dimension to the matter in which we are advising you.

These transfers are subject to special rules under European and UK data protection law.

If you would like further information please contact us. (see ‘How to contact us’ below).

Your rights

You have the following rights, which you can exercise free of charge:

Access

The right to be provided with a copy of your personal data

Rectification

The right to require us to correct any mistakes in your personal data

To be forgotten

The right to require us to delete your personal data—in certain situations

Restriction of processing

The right to require us to restrict processing of your personal data—in certain circumstances, eg if you contest the accuracy of the data

Data portability

The right to receive the personal data you provided to us, in a structured, commonly used and machine-readable format and/or transmit that data to a third party—in certain situations

To object

The right to object:

—at any time to your personal data being processed for direct marketing (including profiling);

—in certain other situations to our continued processing of your personal data, eg processing carried out for the purpose of our legitimate interests.

Not to be subject to automated individual decision-making

The right not to be subject to a decision based solely on automated processing (including profiling) that produces legal effects concerning you or similarly significantly affects you

 

For further information on each of those rights, including the circumstances in which they apply, please contact us or see the Guidance from the UK Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) on individuals’ rights under the General Data Protection Regulation.

If you would like to exercise any of those rights, please:

•         complete a data subject request form—available on request; or

•         email, call or write to us —see below: ‘How to contact us’; and

•         let us have enough information to identify you (eg your full name, address and client or matter reference number);

•         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 what right you want to exercise and the information to which your request relates.

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.

Changes to this privacy policy

This privacy policy was published on 21/05/2018 and last updated on 21/05/2018

We may change this privacy policy from time to time, when we do we will inform you via our website.

How to contact us

Please contact us by post, email or telephone if you have any questions about this privacy policy or the information we hold about you.

Our contact details are shown below:

Our contact details

Our Data Protection Officer's contact details

Marchant Harries, Solicitors

Head Office: Bute Chambers, 17-19 Cardiff Street, Aberdare, Rhondda Cynon Taff, CF44 7DP

Telephone 01685 885500

enquiries@marchantharries.co.uk

 

 

Senior partner: Keith Butler. Based at Bute Chambers, 17-19 Cardiff Street. Email  keithbutler@marchntharries.co.uk

Managing partner: Simon Bird. Based at Bute Chambers, 17-19 Cardiff Street. Email  simonbird@marchntharries.co.uk

 

 

Do you need extra help?

If you would like this policy in another format (for example audio, large print, braille) please contact us (see ‘How to contact us’ above).



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