For the purposes of this Policy, "Personal Information"means any information, recorded in any form, about an identified individual, or an individual whose identity may be inferred or determined from the information. This policy does not cover any information about more than one individual where the identity of the individuals is not known and cannot be inferred from the information. I retain the right to use this latter type of information in any way that I feel is appropriate.
As a general rule, all Personal Information acquired (1) for the purpose of determining whether I will enter into a professional relationship or (2) in the course of a professional relationship, shall be held in strict confidence and not revealed to anyone unless expressly or implicitly authorized by the person or organization concerned. (There are circumstances when such Personal Information may be revealed without your express or implied consent which will be explained further in this policy.) A professional relationship develops when I agree to be retained to provide services to a particular individual or organization.
The Collection, Use & Disclosure of Personal Information
I collect only such information from individuals or organizations as is required for the purposes of providing services or information to them. Personal Information will be collected, to the extent possible, directly from the individual concerned.
I may be required to disclose Personal Information to others, in the course of providing legal services on your behalf. For instance, I may be required to disclose Personal Information to court officials, government officials, financial institutions, insurance agents, title insurers, utility companies, and others, in order to complete the work for which you retained my services. By retaining my services, you consent to the fact that I may disclose, without your express written consent, such Personal Information to others, as I deem necessary in order to complete the legal services for you. In such circumstances, I will not disclose more information than is required. You agree not to hold me liable for any damages, injury or losses which you may suffer as a result of the disclosure of such Personal Information in such circumstances.
I may also disclose Personal Information to persons or organizations, either contractors or agents, that perform services on my behalf. Personal Information will only be provided to such persons or organizations if they agree to use such information solely for the purposes of providing services to me and, with respect to that information, to act in a manner consistent with the relevant principles articulated in this Policy.
There are also circumstances where the use and/or disclosure of Personal Information may be justified or permitted or where I am obliged to disclose information without your consent. Such circumstances may include:
I endeavour to ensure that any Personal Information provided and in my possession is as accurate, current and complete as necessary for the purposes for which I will use that information. I urge all individuals to notify me promptly of any changes in their Personal Information.
The length of time I retain Personal Information varies depending on the service and the nature of the information. This period may extend beyond the end of the solicitor-client relationship but it may be only for so long as it is necessary for me to have sufficient information to respond to any issues that may arise at a later date. When I deem that I no longer require your Personal Information, I have procedures to destroy, delete, erase or convert it into an anonymous form.
I endeavour to maintain adequate physical, procedural and technical security with respect to my office and information storage facilities so as to prevent any loss, misuse, unauthorized access, disclosure, or modification of Personal Information.
In terms of communicating Personal Information, you may wish to note that there is no method of transmitting or storing data that is completely secure. While the physical characteristics of each are different, mail, telephone calls, faxes and transmissions over the Internet are all susceptible to possible loss, misrouting, interception and misuse of the information being communicated or transmitted.
As do many organizations, I attempt to strike a reasonable balance between security and convenience. In communicating with clients and others, I often request the right to use a method of communication that is less secure than some of its less convenient alternatives. An example of this is e-mail. At this time, when I use e-mail, it may be sent as unencrypted plain text. I do this because many of my clients and others cannot readily process encrypted e-mail. This is done for convenience but has the security concern that, if misrouted or intercepted, it could be read more easily than encrypted e-mail.
If you have any questions or concerns about your privacy and my role in protecting it, please contact Lucie Laperriere, Privacy Officer, 325 Ski Club Road, North Bay, ON, P1B 7R3, Tel. 705-495-8554, Fax 705-495-6274. If I am unable to resolve the concern, individuals can contact the Privacy Commissioner of Canada at 112 Kent Street, Ottawa, ON, K1A 1H3, Tel: (613) 995-8210, Toll free: 1-800-282-1376, Fax: (613) 947-6850.
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