'Personal information' is any information or opinion, in any form, which identifies an individual or from which an individual's identity is apparent or can be reasonably ascertained.
The National Privacy Principles
From 21 December 2001, most private sector organisations in Australia, must by law comply with the National Privacy Principles subject to the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) ("NPPs"). I am bound by the NPPs.
Collecting personal information about you
The kinds of personal information I hold:
I only collect personal information that is necessary for me to perform my functions, to develop and promote my services and to assist me with complying with my legal and regulatory obligations.
The kinds of personal information I collect and hold will depend upon the services you request from me. However, it may include:
- Information you give to me when you instruct me to act for you or request another service from me. This information will include your name, address and contact details.
- Information about individuals I collect in the course of acting for clients
- Communications between myself and yourself
I also collect some information from you when you use my facilities and services available through my website will determine the amount and type of information which I collect about you. Some of this information will not be personal information because it will not reveal your identity.
The only personal information which I collect about you is when you use my website and tell me about yourself, for example, by completing an online form or information you provide to me when you send me an email. I will record your email address if you send me an email.
When you visit my website, the server attaches a small data file called a "cookie" to your computer's memory.
Collection of anonymous information
As most websites do, I track usage patterns on my website on an anonymous aggregate basis. Your identity cannot reasonably be ascertained from this information. Each time you visit my website a web server makes a record of your visit. Specifically, it records your:
- Internet Provider
- Date and time of your visit
- Pages accessed and the documents downloaded
- Search items entered
- Referring URLs (universal locators)
The way I collect personal information from you:
While in most instances I will collect information directly from the person to whom the information relates, I may require you to provide me with information about third parties. Accordingly, I may also collect information about you from a third party.
When I obtain personal and other information from third parties whom I am referred to by you, I will assume and you will ensure that you have made that third party aware that you have referred me to them and of the purposes involved in the collection, use and disclosure of the relevant personal or other information.
Using and disclosing your personal information
The purposes for which I collect and hold personal information and how I use it.
Any personal information which I collect about you will be used and disclosed by me so that I can provide you with the services that you have requested, or otherwise to enable me to carry out my functions as professional legal service providers and seeking to comply with my legal and regulatory obligations.
I may determine that it is necessary for me to conduct further searches and enquiries regarding the information you have provided me or more generally concerning you or your associates for my regulatory or prudential purposes. This may entail using some or all of the collected information to collect additional information concerning you or your associates (including personal information in the respect of individuals) from various other entities including, but not limited to, government agencies, law enforcement bodies, publicly available records, public registries, court or tribunal records, ratings agencies, search and credit reporting agencies, and regulatory and licensing bodies.
I may also use your personal information to provide you with information about other services offered by us. If you would prefer not to receive this information, please let me know and I will respect your request.
Contracting out services and disclosures.
I may disclose your personal information to my service entities and contract out some of my functions (such as mailing) to external service providers. I may disclose your personal information to these external service providers but only so that they can provide the services that I have contracted out to them.
Emails you receive from me regarding publications, events and education
How I collect personal information from you
If you provide me or have provided me with your email address, I may send emails to you containing my publications, such as newsletters. If you do not wish for me to send you such emails, please contact me.
I may use an "email management system" to automate the management and dispatch of these emails. The system operates by inserting tracking codes in the emails that I send to you.
The kind of personal information I collect about you
The tracking code allows me to collect personal information about you, such as whether you received and opened an email, and whether you clicked through to any links to my website. This information that I collect about you will be stored by my email management system.
The purpose for which I collect the information about you
The personal information that the email management system collects about you is used by myself to:
- ensure that you only receive correspondence that you have informed me that you wish to receive
- determine whether the information that I send to your is suitable for you interests, information needs and profile
- ensure that the email address that you have provided me is still operational
- determine whether emails that I send to you are received by you
- update a request that you make to me to unsubscribe from a publication that I send to you
- review the effectiveness and relevance of my emails to you by collecting other statistical information
Overseas transfers of personal information
I will only transfer your personal information overseas if:
- I reasonably believe that the recipient of the information is subject to a law or a contract which effectively upholds privacy principles similar to the NPPs;
- you have consented to the transfer;
- the transfer is necessary for us to provide you with your requested services;
- it is not practical to obtain your consent, the transfer is for your benefit and your consent would likely be given; or
'Sensitive information' is a specific type of personal information that includes health information and information about a persons' race, ethnic origin, political opinions, membership of political, professional or trade associations, religious or philosophical beliefs, sexual preferences and criminal history.
The NPPs impose greater obligations on me regarding any collection, use or disclosure I make of your sensitive information. I will only collect your sensitive information if:
- you have expressly consented to me doing so;
- I am required to do so by law; or
- the collection is necessary to establish, exercise or defend a legal claim.
Access to your personal information
In most cases, you can gain access to personal information that I hold about you. I will handle requests for access to your personal information in accordance with the NPPs.
I encourage all requests for access to your personal information to be directed to me via e-mail or phone.
I will deal with all requests for access to personal information as quickly as possible. Requests for a large amount of information, or information which is not currently in use, may require further time before a response can be given. In some cases, consistently with the NPPs, I may refuse to give you access to personal information I hold about you. This includes circumstances where giving you access:
- Would be unlawful (for example, where a record which contains personal information about you is subject to a claim for legal professional privilege by one of my clients)
- Would have an unreasonable impact on other people's privacy
- Would prejudice negotiations I are having with you
- Would prejudice an investigation of unlawful activity
- Would prejudice activities carried out by, or for, a law enforcement agency
If I refuse to give you access I will provide you with reasons for my refusal.
Generally, if you request me to do so I will amend any personal information about you held by me which is inaccurate, incomplete or out of date. If I disagree with your view about the accuracy, completeness or currency of a record of your personal information held by me, and you ask me to associate with that record a statement that you have a contrary view, I will take reasonable steps to do so.
If you would like more information about the way I manage personal information that I hold about you, or are concerned that I may have breached your privacy and wish to make a complaint, please contact me.