About Us

Privacy Policy

What we need

Melrose & Porteous will be a "controller" of the personal information that you provide to us when you instruct us to act on your behalf.

 When you become a client of Melrose & Porteous, we will collect, store and use the personal information that you provide to us in your instructions and during the course of our solicitor / client relationship. We may ask you for additional personal information during the course of our client / solicitor relationship, which shall be collected, stored and used in accordance with this privacy notice.

 We also collect, store and use the following personal information relating to you when you become our client from third parties, for example Estate Agents, accountants, financial advisors, other Solicitors, insurance companies, banks, lenders, search information providers, credit reference agencies and fee assessors from other people you know including family members and people you are financially linked to. This also includes organisations and individuals who are our clients in circumstances where you are a party to or otherwise involved in a matter on which we are instructed, for example as a witness, beneficiary, guarantor, buyer, seller, debtor, defender, pursuer, employee or employer. This will include salaries, pensions, dividends and other earnings, data used to make assessments of your ability to meet existing or potential financial obligations, information about money individuals owe or could owe and an individual’s assets.

 This may also include information about an individual’s bankruptcy, information about a public office held by an individual, information regarding inhibitions, ownership of land held by the Land Register, information from Courts or Tribunals, information from credit agencies to verify identity.  

Why we need your personal information  – contractual purposes

 We need to collect our clients' personal information so that we can perform services for you. We will use our clients' personal information to: 

  • provide you with legal advice, including communications by email, letter and/or telephone etc. in connection with the services we provide.
  • verify your identity where this is required
  • comply with legal obligations to present a financial claim
  • represent you as your solicitors in connection with any legal work we carry out on your behalf
  • provide clients with legal advice in respect of the matter upon which we are instructed to provide advice and/or process and make payments in connection with such matters
  • maintain our records
  • respond to and communicate with clients regarding your questions, comments, support needs or complaints, concerns or allegations in relation to investigating your complaint or taking disciplinary action etc.
  • prevent and detect crime, fraud or corruption, including Money Laundering under the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer of Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017
  • understand your needs and how they may be met
  • For business clients, including companies, public bodies and/or charities, we will use personal information about key individuals in the business so that we can operate and administer the services we provide. We will also complete due diligence by using personal information about key individuals in relation to anti-money laundering regulations.

We will provide the Law Society of Scotland with names of individuals for whom our Solicitors act under Powers of Attorney.

 If you do not provide us with all of the personal information that we need to collect then this may affect our ability to provide you with legal advice and/or represent you as your solicitors.   

Why we need your personal information – legitimate purposes 

We also process our clients' personal information in pursuit of our legitimate interests to: 

  • promote our services by sending clients communications with information for upcoming events and legal updates ;
  • promote our services by sending clients communications in relation to Estate Agency
  • invite our clients as guests to events

Where we process your personal information in pursuit of our legitimate interests, you have the right to object to us using your personal information for the above purposes. If you wish to object to any of the above processing, please contact us on 01361 882752.

 If we comply with your objection, this may affect our ability to undertake the tasks above for the benefit of you as a client. 

Why we need your personal information – legal obligations

We are under a legal obligation to process certain personal information relating to our clients for the purposes of complying with our obligations under: 

  • the Law Society of Scotland requirements for solicitors;
  • Anti-Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing Regulations requires, in certain circumstances, information to be disclosed to the National Crime Agency
  • The Scottish Legal Complaints Commission and other supervisory bodies

Who we share your personal information with 

We may be required to share personal information with statutory of regulatory authorities and organisations to complete with Statutory Obligations, such organisations include:

  • Business Associates or Professional advisors-for the purposes of taking advice
  • Family Associates and other representatives-for the purpose of processing your claim
  • Local and Central Government- for regulatory purposes
  • Financial Organisations- to act on your behalf
  • Ombudsmen and Regulatory Authorities- to comply with regulations
  • Credit Reference and Debt Collection Agencies- to act on your behalf
  • Scottish Legal Aid Board- to provide services for you
  • Law Society of Scotland- to comply with regulations
  • Law Accountants- to obtain accounting services
  • Service Providers- to act on your behalf
  • Scottish Legal Complaints Commission- regulatory matters

Melrose & Porteous employs third party suppliers to provide services including I.T, payroll, preparation of accounts etc. and these suppliers may process personal data on our behalf as processors and will be subject to written contractual conditions to only process that personal data under our instructions and to protect it. In the event that we do share personal data with external third parties, we will ensure that such personal data is strictly required for the specific purposes and take reasonable steps to ensure that the recipients shall only process the disclosed personal data in accordance with those purposes.

How we protect your personal information

Your personal information is stored in our electronic filing system and our servers based in the U.K and E.U. and is accessed by our staff for the purposes set out above. If we require to transfer your personal information outwith the E.U. we will provide you with information regarding the safeguards that we have put in place with the recipient country to protect your personal information. 

How long we keep your personal information

We are required by the Law Society of Scotland, other regulators and insurers to retain your data even after we have ceased to act for you. The period of retention required is set by the Law Society of Scotland however varies with the applicable type of business, but is typically for a period of 10 years. To ensure we comply with all such requirements, it is the policy of the firm to retain all data for a period of at least seven years from the end of the period concerned.

All staff with access to your information have a duty of confidentiality under the Law Society of Scotland Requirements for Solicitors which we are required to follow.

We do have a data retention policy that sets out the periods for retaining and reviewing all information that we hold. This sets out different retention periods and you can request a copy by contacting us at Melrose & Porteous, 47 Market Square, Duns TD11 3BX. 

Your rights

You can exercise any of the following rights by writing to us at Melrose & Porteous, 47 Market Square, Duns TD11 3BX.

Your rights in relation to your personal information are: 

  • you have a right to request access to the personal information that we hold about you by making a "subject access request";
  • if you believe that any of your personal information is inaccurate or incomplete, you have a right to request that we correct or complete your personal information;
  • you have a right to request that we restrict the processing of your personal information for specific purposes; and
  • if you wish us to delete your personal information, you may request that we do so.
  • you have a right to object to us processing your personal information in certain circumstances
  • you have a right to obtain and reuse the personal information that we hold about you for your own purposes in certain circumstances

Any requests received by Melrose & Porteous will be considered under applicable data protection legislation. Any enquiries should be address to Melrose & Porteous, 47 Market Square, Duns TD11 3BX. If you remain dissatisfied, you have a right to raise a complaint with the Information Commissioner's Office at www.ico.org.uk

 

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