Protecting your Information
Your Privacy Rights
From January 1, 2004, all businesses engaged in commercial activities must comply with the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (the Act) 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 Farber & Robillard LLP. The Act gives you rights concerning the privacy of your personal information. Farber & Robillard LLP is responsible for the personal information we collect and hold. To ensure this accountability, we have developed this policy, and trained our lawyers and support staff about our policies and practices.
What personal information do we collect?
Personal information is any information that identifies you, or by which your identity could be deduced. If we did not collect and use your personal information we could not provide you with legal services.
How do we collect your personal information?
We collect information only by lawful and fair means and not in an unreasonably intrusive way. Wherever possible we collect your personal information directly from you, at the start of a retainer and in the course of our representation.
Sometimes we may obtain information about you from other sources: for example,
- your insurance company;
- your real estate agent in a property transaction;
- from a government agency or registry;
- your employer, if we are acting for you, at its request;
- your accountant;
- your doctor or other health professional;
- from a hospital or other medical care facility.
In most cases, we shall ask you to specifically consent, if we collect, use, or disclose your personal information. Normally, we ask for your consent in writing, but in some circumstances, we may accept your oral consent. Sometimes, your consent may be implied through your conduct with us because we must collect personal information about you in relation to the legal services you have requested that we provide you.
Use of Your Information
We use your personal information to provide legal advice and services to you and to administer our client (time and billing) databases. Farber Robillard Leith LLP does not disclose your personal information to any third party to enable them to market their products and services. For example, we do not provide our client mailing lists to other law firms.
Disclosure of your Personal Information
Under certain circumstances, Farber Robillard Leith LLP will disclose your personal information:
- when we are required or authorized by law to do so, for example if a court issues a subpoena;
- when you have consented to the disclosure;
- when the legal services we are providing to you requires us give your information to third parties (for example a lender in a real estate mortgage transaction) your consent will be implied, unless you tell us otherwise;
- where it is necessary to establish or collect fees;
- if we engage expert witnesses on your behalf;
- if we retain other law firms in other jurisdictions, on your behalf;
- if the information is already publicly known.
Updating Your Information
Since we use your personal information to provide legal services to you, it is important that the information be accurate and up-to-date. If during the course of the retainer, any of your information changes, please inform us so that we can make any necessary changes.
Is My Personal Information Secure?
Farber Robillard Leith LLP takes all reasonable precautions to ensure that your personal information is kept safe from loss, unauthorized access, modification or disclosure. Among the steps taken to protect your information are:
- premises security;
- restricted file access to personal information within our firm;
- deploying technological safeguards like security software and firewalls to prevent hacking or unauthorized computer access;
- internal password and security policies.
Access to Your Personal Information
You may ask for access to any personal information we hold about you. 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.
If Farber Robillard Leith LLP holds information about you and you can establish that it is not accurate, complete and up-to-date, Farber Robillard Leith LLP will take reasonable steps to correct it.
Can I be Denied Access to My Personal Information?
Your rights to access your personal information are not absolute.
We may deny access when:
- denial of access is required or authorized by law;
- when granting you access would have an unreasonable impact on other people’s privacy;
- to protect our firm’s rights and property;
- where the request is frivolous or vexatious.
If we deny your request for access to, or refuse a request to correct information, we shall explain why. Farber Robillard Leith LLP does not use your Social Insurance Number as a way of identifying or organizing the information we hold upon you.
Communicating with Us
You should be aware that e-mail is not a 100% secure medium, and you should be aware of this when contacting us to send personal or confidential information.
If you apply to Farber Robillard Leith LLP 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.