Waye Law recognizes the importance of privacy and the sensitivity of personal information. As lawyers we have a professional obligation to keep confidential all information we receive within a lawyer-client relationship. Our relationship with you is founded on trust and we are committed to maintain that trust. To that end, we are committed to protecting any personal information we hold.
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 this Firm. The Act gives you rights concerning the privacy of your personal information.
Waye Law 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.
Why we collect personal information
Waye Law collects your personal information for the following limited purposes:
- To establish and maintain client lists;
- To represent you as our client;
- For internal purposes including the professional development of firm lawyers and staff; and
- For direct marketing purposes, from time to time.
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. Our firm restricts the collection of personal information only to that information that is necessary for the purposes noted above. We are committed to collecting personal information in a fair, open and lawful manner. Wherever possible, we collect your personal information directly from you at the start of a retainer and in the course of our representation.
In most cases, we shall ask you to specifically consent if we collect, use, or disclose your personal information. Sometimes, your consent may be implied through your conduct with us.
Use of your information
By retaining our firm, you have confirmed your trust in us. We are honoured by this trust and take pride in living up to it.
We use your personal information to provide legal advice and services to you, to administer our client (time and billing) databases and to include you in any direct marketing activities. If you tell us that you no longer wish to receive information about our services, or about new developments in the law, we will not send any further material.
Waye Law 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.
Waye Law stores and maintains personal information in conformity with the requirements of the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act and the model code for the protection of personal information created and approved by the Canadian Standards Association.
Disclosure of your personal information
Under certain circumstances, Waye Law 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 professional retained to conduct a custody access/assessment or a mediation) your consent will be implied, unless you tell us otherwise;
- when it is necessary to establish or collect fees;
- if we engage expert witnesses on your behalf;
- if we retain other law firms at your request, and on your behalf;
- if the information is Publicly Available Personal Information, as it is defined under the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act.
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?
Waye Law 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;
- deploying technological safeguards like security software and firewalls to prevent hacking or unauthorized computer access;
- internal password and security policies.
We ensure that any of our employees who deal with personal information are properly trained and are aware of the necessary and appropriate measures required to protect personal information.
Access to your personal information
Our firm makes information about its policies and practices respecting the collection and maintenance of personal information available to all interested parties.
We are pleased to answer any questions that you may have regarding the collection and maintenance of 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.
Our firm is committed to maintaining accurate, complete and up-to-date personal information. If you are aware of changes to the personal information you have given to us, simply inform us of the changes and we will update our records accordingly.
Can I be denied access to my personal information?
Your rights to access your personal information are not absolute. We may deny access when:
- it is required or authorized by law (for example, when a record containing personal information about you is protected by solicitor-client privilege);
- to do so would reveal confidential commercial information, and the personal information cannot be severed from the record;
- to do so could reasonably be expected to threaten the life or security of another individual, and the personal information cannot be severed from the record; or
- the information was generated in the course of a formal dispute resolution process.
If we deny your request for access to, or refuse a request to correct information, we shall explain why. Waye Law does not use your Social Insurance Number as a way of identifying or organizing the information we hold upon you.
Can I request anonymity?
Whenever it is legal and practicable, we may offer the opportunity to deal with general inquiries without providing your name (for example, by accessing general information on our website). The Proceeds of Crime (Money Laundering) and Terrorist Financing Act requires us to confirm the identity of all new clients. It may also require us disclose information to FINTRAC in relation to certain large cash transactions.
Communicating with Waye Law
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.
Requests for Access
If you have any questions, or wish to access your personal information, please write to us.
If you are not satisfied with our response, the Privacy Commissioner of Canada can be reached at:
112 Kent Street
If you apply to Waye Law 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.
When you visit www.wayelaw.com, your IP address may be collected, as well as which pages you visit and for how long, how you arrived at or were directed to our website, a general location of your IP address, what kind of OS you run, and whether you use a smartphone or tablet to access our website.
The information collected gives anonymous statistics about how visitors use the website. This information is then used to manage our website and to ensure that the site technology is sufficient to meet your needs. We may provide aggregated information to third parties, but these statistics do not include any identifiable personal information.