Neilan Stramandinoli Family Law (ABN 46 616 840 914) is committed to upholding the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) outlined in Schedule 1 of the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (the Act). These principles outline the way an organisation should collect, use and disclose personal information as well as characterising the rights of individuals to access their personal information.
What information is covered by the Act and why is it collected?
There are two types of information covered by the Act. The first is personal information, the second is sensitive information.
In order to properly represent a client, it may be necessary or practical to collect personal information about a client and their circumstances. This may include, but is not limited to:
- Information about identity (name, date of birth, birthplace);
- Contact details (e.g. email, phone number, physical address);
- Occupation and work history;
- Personal circumstances (age, gender, relationship status);
- Information about financial affairs etc.
The nature of a case will depend on the type of information a client may be asked to disclose. We will only collect personal information by lawful and fair means, and only in order to perform the functions or activities reasonably necessary to fulfil our purpose, largely to provide legal services to our clients.
In order to fulfil our purpose, it may also be necessary to ask for sensitive information. This may include, but is not limited to:
- Racial or ethnic origin;
- Sexual orientation;
- Criminal records;
- Religious beliefs;
- Information surrounding health or genetics;
- Membership of political or trade associations.
This information is further protected by the Information Privacy Act 2014 and will not be asked for unless it is necessary for us to fulfil our purpose which is largely to provide legal services.
Use and disclosure
Neilan Stramandinoli Family Law will not share information for secondary purposes or with other agencies without client’s consent unless an exception arises. These exceptions may arise if sharing the information is:
- reasonably expected to be shared in order for our purpose to be fulfilled (e.g. briefing a barrister, communicating with other lawyers relevant to a matter, government bodies and third parties involved in the completion or processing of a transaction);
- required or authorised by the law;
- required or authorised by a court or tribunal order;
- necessary to prevent a threat to the health, life or safety of a person or the public;
- reasonably necessary to locate a person who has been reported as missing;
- There is reason to suspect unlawful activity or serious misconduct that we have an obligation to report;
- necessary to be provided to our insurers and third party service providers such as information technology service providers.
How information is collected and held
Generally, the information we collect will be directly provided by a client. This may be done electronically (e.g. email or online forms), by paper, over the phone or in person. Once it is collected, reasonable steps will be taken to ensure information is stored in a secure and confidential manner. Please note we cannot be held liable for unauthorised access to personal information.
We may also obtain personal information from third party searches, other investigations and from adverse or opposing parties. If you are a client, we must collect accurate name and address information from you to comply with our legal and professional obligations. We rely on our clients to advise of any changes to personal information.
We take reasonable steps to protect the personal information that we hold from misuse, interference and loss. We limit access to it through password protected accounts and dispose of it when we can, having regard to our insurance and professional obligations. Despite this we cannot guarantee the security of personal information.
It is uncommon for us to provide information to anyone outside of Australia. However, there are some circumstances when information may need to be shared with overseas recipients. If this does occur in your matter, reasonable steps will be taken to ensure those receiving the information uphold a comparable standard of care to the Information Privacy Act 2014.
Can you access your information?
Under the Information Privacy Act 2014, you have the right to request access to the personal information we hold about you. We will inform you of the personal information within a reasonable timeframe. You have the right to check the information for errors and to ensure all information is complete, accurate and up to date. If you do find errors, we will take reasonable steps to amend the information.
Access will be granted unless we have the right to refuse access pursuant to APP 12.3. If this is the case, a written notice must be provided to you outlining the reasons for refusal.
We do not use personal or sensitive information for marketing purposes.
Make a complaint
We will attempt to contact you in a reasonable timeframe to discuss your issue.
If you are dissatisfied with our response or believe a data breach has not been addressed, you may wish to contact the Australian Privacy Commissioner. The Commissioner has the power to assess your complaint and will determine if the actions taken by our firm interfered with your privacy.
This policy was updated on 28 September 2019.