The Personal Information Protection Act (“PIPA”) regulates the way private sector organizations within British Columbia collect, use, keep, secure and disclose personal information. “Personal Information” means all information about an identifiable individual. Zacharias Vickers LLP recognizes the importance of privacy and recognizes the sensitivity of personal information received by us in the course of our legal practice.
We recognize that we have a professional obligation to maintain the confidentiality of our clients’ information and recognize our obligations concerning the personal information of all individuals that we collect, use, or disclose in our practice. This Policy outlines Zacharias Vickers LLP’s policies and procedures regarding the collection, use, retention, and disclosure in respect of its clients and other individuals.
Why we collect personal information
In order to be able to give legal advice to our clients, we need access to all relevant facts and information that relate to our retainer and to the representation of our clients. This information will necessarily include personal information about our clients, and in some cases, individuals other than our clients.
Collection, use and disclosure of personal information at Zacharias Vickers LLP
Where practical, we endeavour to collect personal information directly from the individual to whom the information pertains. When necessary, we may collect personal information from other sources, including:
Government agencies or registries;
Accountants and other advisors;
Credit bureaus; and
Other third parties that represent they have the right to disclose such personal information.
By retaining Zacharias Vickers LLP for legal advice or representation, an individual consents to the reasonably necessary collection, use or disclosure of their personal information in order for us to properly advise and represent them.
When it is necessary for us to collect personal information about individuals other than our clients, we will do so in accordance with the provisions of PIPA.
PIPA deems that an individual has consented to our collection, use or disclosure of personal information about that individual if, at the time the consent is deemed to be given, the purpose would be considered obvious to a reasonable person. In such circumstances, we may collect, use or disclose personal information without obtaining a written or verbal consent to do so.
PIPA also permits us to collect, use or disclose personal information about an individual in some circumstances without the individual’s consent. Those include (but are not limited to) circumstances in which:
The collection, use or disclosure is clearly in the interests of the individual and consent cannot be obtained in a timely way.
It is reasonable to expect that the collection or use of personal information with the consent of the individual would compromise the availability or accuracy of the information, and the collection or use of the information is necessary for an investigation or proceeding.
It is reasonable to expect that the disclosure of personal information with the consent of the individual would compromise an investigation or proceeding, and the disclosure of the information is necessary for an investigation or proceeding.
The personal information is available to the public from a prescribed source.
The collection, use or disclosure of personal information is required or authorized by law.
When we collect, use or disclose personal information, we will make reasonable efforts to ensure that it is accurate and complete.
Security of personal information at Zacharias Vickers LLP
We recognize our professional and legal obligations to protect the confidential information of our clients as well as our legal obligations to protect the personal information we gather about our clients and other individuals during the course of our law practice.
We have therefore made arrangements to secure against the unauthorized access, collection, use, disclosure, copying, modification, disposal or destruction of personal information.
Zacharias Vickers LLP does not disclose client personal information to third parties for the purpose of marketing their products or services.
Requests for access to personal information
PIPA permits individuals to submit written requests to us to provide them with:
Their personal information under our custody or control.
Information about how their personal information under our control has been and is being used by us.
The names of the individuals and organizations to which their personal information under our control has been disclosed by us.
We will respond to access requests in the time allowed by PIPA and will make a reasonable effort to assist applicants and to respond as accurately and completely as reasonably possible. All requests may be subject to fees and disbursements the law permits us to charge.
Please note that an individual’s ability to access his or her personal information under our control is not absolute. We will not disclose personal information when the disclosure:
could reasonably be expected to threaten the safety or physical or mental health of an individual other than the individual who made the request;
can reasonably be expected to cause immediate or grave harm to the safety or to the physical or mental health of the individual who made the request;
would reveal personal information about another individual; or
would reveal the identity of an individual who has provided personal information about another individual and the individual providing the personal information does not consent to disclosure of his or her identity.
PIPA further provides that we are not required to disclose personal information where:
the personal information is protected by solicitor-client privilege;
disclosure of the personal information would reveal confidential commercial information that, if disclosed, could, in the opinion of a reasonable person, harm the competitive position of our organization;
the personal information was collected without consent for the purposes of an investigation, and the investigation and associated proceedings and appeals have not been completed; or
the personal information was collected or created by a mediator or arbitrator in the conduct of a mediation or arbitration for which he or she was appointed to act:
(i) under a collective agreement,
(ii) under an enactment, or
(iii) by a court.
We may choose not to respond to requests for access to personal information that are frivolous, vexatious, or repetitious.
Requests for correction of personal information
Individuals may submit written requests to us to correct errors or omissions in their personal information that is our custody or control. If and when such a request is received, we will: correct the personal information and, if reasonable to do so, send correction notifications to any other organizations to which we disclosed the incorrect information; or decide not to correct the personal information, but annotate the personal information that a correction was requested but not made.
Contacting or communicating with us
If you have any questions with respect to our policies concerning the handling of your personal information, or if you wish to request access to, or correction of, your personal information under our care and control, please contact our Privacy Officer at:
Attention: Jessica Breukelman
Zacharias Vickers LLP
3 – 45780 Yale Road
Chilliwack, BC V2P 2N4
If you are dissatisfied with our handling of your personal information, we invite you to contact our Privacy Officer in writing, setting out the reasons for your concern. If you remain dissatisfied after our Privacy Officer has reviewed and responded to your concern, you may wish to contact the Office of the Information and Privacy Commissioner at:
PO Box 9038, Stn Prov Govt Victoria, BC V8W 9A4