Lax O’Sullivan Lisus Gottlieb recognizes the importance of privacy and the sensitivity of personal information. We often need to collect personal information so that we can serve our clients. We are committed to obtaining, using, protecting and disclosing personal information responsibly and carefully.
Your Privacy Rights
From January 1, 2004, all businesses engaged in commercial activities must comply with the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (“PIPEDA”), and the Canadian Standards Association Model Code for the Protection of Personal Information, which it incorporates. These obligations extend to lawyers and law firms, including Lax O’Sullivan Lisus Gottlieb. PIPEDA gives our clients rights concerning the privacy of their personal information.
Why Do We Obtain Personal Information?
As a law firm, we obtain, use, and disclose personal information in the course of providing legal services. We require personal information so that we can contact our clients, obtain information about their legal concerns, and develop and implement effective strategies to address those concerns.
What personal information do we collect?
Personal information is information about our clients’ personal characteristics that identify them or by which their identity could be deduced, including their name, age, ethnic origin, marital status, religion, education, contact information including home address, telephone, fax and email, and health information.
If you apply to Lax O’Sullivan Lisus Gottlieb for a job, we need to consider your personal information as part of our review process. We normally retain information from candidates after a decision has been made, unless you ask us not to retain the information. If we offer you a job, which you accept, the information will be retained in accordance with our privacy procedures for employee records.
On our website, like most other commercial websites, we may monitor traffic patterns, site usage and related site information in order to optimise our web service. We may provide aggregated information to third parties, but these statistics do not include any identifiable personal information.
How do we collect personal information?
We collect information only by lawful and fair means, and not in an unreasonably intrusive way. Wherever possible we collect our clients’ personal information directly from them, both at the start of a retainer and in the course of our representation. Sometimes we may obtain information about our clients from other sources, for example:
- an insurance company;
- a government agency or registry;
- an employer, if we are acting for you, at its request; or
- an accountant or other professional advisor.
In most cases, we ask our clients to specifically consent before we collect, use, or disclose their personal information. Normally, we ask for their consent in writing, but in some circumstances, we may accept their oral consent. Sometimes, consent may be implied through conduct.
What steps do we take to protect personal information?
At Lax O’Sullivan Lisus Gottlieb, we ensure that our clients’ personal information is gathered, accessed, used and disclosed appropriately, including by:
- ensuring lawyers and staff understand the importance of maintaining the security and confidentiality of personal information;
- developing and implementing policies for the collection and use of personal information;
- protecting personal information against loss or theft; and
- safeguarding personal information from unauthorized access, disclosure, copying, use or modification by:
- restricting access to the office and files;
- using technological tools such as passwords to limit access to computer data; and
- ensuring that third parties who may have access to personal information in the course of services they provide to us follow proper privacy principles.
Disclosure of your personal information
Lax O’Sullivan Lisus Gottlieb may disclose our clients’ personal information:
- when they have consented to the disclosure;
- when we are required or authorized by law to do so, for example, pursuant to a court order;
- when the legal services we are providing require us to give personal information to third parties (such as expert witnesses);
- where it is necessary to establish or collect fees;
- if we retain other law firms on our clients’ behalf; or
- if the information is already publicly known.
We retain personal information only as long as it is needed by us to provide our services. In some circumstances, personal information may be stored in an off-site storage facility until we determine it is no longer required.
Can clients access their personal information from Lax O’Sullivan Lisus Gottlieb?
Yes. Clients may ask for access to any personal information we hold about them and have a right to know how it is or has been used. Summary information is available on request. More detailed requests which require archive or other retrieval costs may be subject to our normal professional and disbursement fees.
The right to access personal information is not absolute. We may deny access to non-clients of the firm, as in most cases that information was collected in the course of advising a client, in which we case we have a legal obligation to preserve privilege and maintain the confidentiality of the information, absent our client’s consent to its release.
If we deny a request for access to information, we will explain why.
What if I think there is an error in my personal information?
If Lax O’Sullivan Lisus Gottlieb holds information about you and you can establish that it is not accurate, complete and up-to-date, we will take reasonable steps to correct it.
Who should I contact at Lax O’Sullivan Lisus Gottlieb?
If you want to access personal information, or have questions about our personal information policy, please contact Matt Gottlieb at telephone: 416 644 5353; fax: 416 598 3730 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. You should be aware that email is not a 100% secure medium, and you should be aware of this when contacting us to send personal or confidential information.