Any personal information you provide to us will be treated with care and, subject to this Policy and applicable law, will not be used or disclosed in a way to which you have not consented. Our professionals, employees and agents are also subject to professional and ethical obligations relating to the confidentiality of information our firm receives in the context of providing legal services.
By submitting your personal information to our firm, you signify your consent to the collection, use and disclosure of your personal information in accordance with this Policy. If you do not consent to the collection, use and disclosure of your personal information in accordance with this Policy, please do not provide any personal information to us. Of course, certain services can only be offered to you if you provide personal information to our firm, and therefore we may not be able to offer you those services if you choose not to provide us with required personal information.
Personal Information – The term “personal information” refers to any information about an identifiable individual or any information that allows an individual to be identified. In general, personal information does not include business contact information, such as your name, title or position, business address, business telephone or fax number in your capacity as an employee of an organization. During your relationship with our firm, you may be asked to provide certain personal information concerning you and/or other individuals (such as witnesses, family members, adverse parties, employees, directors, officers, shareholders, investors, business partners, customers, etc.). Examples of such information include name, date of birth, home address, financial and credit information, billing and account information and other information relating to the provision of legal services by our firm.
Purposes for which Personal Information is Collected – Our firm collects, uses and discloses personal information for the purposes identified at the time of collection, or as otherwise permitted or required by applicable law, including for the following purposes:
- to provide legal and other related services;
- to comply with our professional obligations, including the rules regarding client identification and verification;
- to establish and manage client relationships, including considering whether to establish such a relationship;
- administrative, management and business purposes, such as to issue invoices, administer accounts, collect and process payments, evaluate credit standing, fulfill contractual obligations, and audit our business operations;
- to develop our knowledge management systems and databases;
- to distribute our publications, invitations to seminars and events and other communications which we believes may be of interest to clients and other individuals;
- to contact and communicate with clients and other individuals for the purpose of conducting market research, and evaluating client service and satisfaction;
- for any other purpose for which we have your consent.
Limiting Collection, Use and Disclosure – We strive to limit the amount of personal information we collect to that necessary and appropriate for the identified purposes. We will not use or disclose your personal information for purposes other than those for which it was collected, except with your consent or as permitted or required by applicable law.
Consent – To the extent possible, we will obtain consent to collect, use and disclose personal information about an individual directly from such individual. However, if you provide personal information concerning another individual (including adverse parties and other individuals involved in legal proceedings) to our firm, you represent that, prior to submitting such information, you have obtained the necessary consent or authority to permit us to collect, use and disclose such personal information for the purposes set out in this Policy, or the collection, use and disclosure is permitted by applicable law.
Our firm will not collect, use or disclose personal information without the consent of the individual(s) concerned unless we are permitted or required to do so by applicable law. We generally do not obtain the consent of the individual(s) concerned in the following circumstances:
- if a client provides personal information about a third person to us for purposes of our legal representation of the client;
- if legal, medical or security reasons make it impossible or impractical to seek consent; and
- when information is being collected for the detection and prevention of fraud or for law enforcement and seeking the consent of the individual may defeat the purpose of collecting the information.
Withdrawal of Consent/Opting-Out – In some jurisdictions, you may withdraw your consent to the use and disclosure of your personal information, or opt-out of certain uses and disclosures To do that, please contact one of our Privacy Officers (identified below).
Disclosure of Your Personal Information – Our professionals are subject to professional and ethical obligations and, as such, we will not disclose personal information that is subject to solicitor-client privilege unless our client has waived privilege or we are permitted or required to do so by law.
Subject always to our professional obligations and only for the purposes of providing legal services, our firm may disclose personal information to third parties (including adverse parties and their counsel, experts, witnesses, service providers), including in the context of legal proceedings and business transactions.
Our firm may also disclose your personal information to your agent.
Our firm may disclose your personal information to a government or regulatory entity that has asserted its lawful authority to obtain the information or where we have reasonable grounds to believe the information could be useful in the investigation of unlawful activity, or to comply with a subpoena or warrant or an order made by a court, person or body with jurisdiction to compel the production of information, or to protect our firm’s rights and property. If our firm is involved in a merger or other reorganization, we may disclose your personal information to the resulting organization.
Our firm may also disclose personal information as otherwise required or permitted by applicable law.
Our firm does not sell or exchange for consideration any personal information it holds.
Storing and Securing Your Information – Our firm may store and process your personal information at our offices in Canada, or elsewhere. To help protect the confidentiality of your personal information, we employs security safeguards that are customary in the legal profession and appropriate to the sensitivity of the information, including physical, organizational and technological measures. Examples of such measures include restricted access to offices, training of personnel, limiting access to information on a “need-to-know” basis, using passwords and well-defined internal policies and practices.
To the extent our firm employs third-party service providers to store, handle or process personal information on our behalf (e.g. data processing or office services), we will use contractual and other means to provide a comparable level of protection while the information is being stored, handled or processed by them.
Access to Personal Information – You may request access to your personal information and/or information about our firm’s collection, use and disclosure of that information by contacting our Privacy Officers.
Subject to certain exceptions prescribed by law, you will be given reasonable access to your personal information and will be entitled to challenge the accuracy and completeness of that information and, to the extent that you have proven such inaccuracy or incompleteness, have it amended as appropriate. Examples of such exceptions include information that is prohibitively costly to provide, information that contains references to other individuals, information that cannot be disclosed for legal, security or commercial proprietary reasons, and information that is subject to solicitor-client or litigation privilege.
You can help our firm maintain the accuracy of your information by notifying us of any changes to your personal information.
If you have any inquiry or complaint that relates to our firm’s policies or procedures relating to the handling of personal information, we invite you to communicate with one of our Privacy Officers.
Website and Electronic Communications
Protecting your privacy is important to our firm. This Policy explains how we collect, use, and disclose the personal information you may provide while using our firm’s Website (the “Website“) and in its Electronic Publications, newsletter, and announcements (“Electronic Communications“). Any personal information you provide to us through the Website will be treated with care, and subject to this Policy will not be used or disclosed in ways to which you have not consented.
By using the Website, you signify your consent to the collection, use, and disclosure of your personal information in accordance with this Policy. If you do not agree with this Policy, you may not use the Website.
Information Automatically Collected
Non-Identifiable Information – Like many other websites, the Website may automatically collect certain non-identifiable information regarding Website users, such as the Internet Protocol (IP) address of your computer, the IP address of your Internet Service Provider, the date and time you access the Website, the Internet address of the Website from which you linked directly to the Website, the operating system you are using, the sections of the Website you visit, the Website pages read and images viewed, and the materials you post to or download from the Website. This non-identifiable information is used for Website and system administration purposes and to improve the Website. Your non-identifiable information may be disclosed to others and permanently archived for future use.
Cookies – The Website may use “cookies”, a technology that installs information on a Website user’s computer to permit the Website to recognize future visits using that computer. Cookies enhance the convenience and use of the Website. You may choose to decline cookies if your browser permits, but doing so may affect your use of the Website and your ability to access certain features of the Website.
Personal Information You Specifically Provide to the Website
Your Personal Information – During your use of the Website, you may be asked to voluntarily provide certain personal information (such as your name, email address, postal address, and telephone number) for purposes such as facilitating communications with you or for applying for access to certain special features or areas of the Website.
Use of Your Personal Information – Our firm may use your personal information to contact and correspond with you, to respond to your inquiries, and as otherwise permitted by law. Generally, our firm will consider the fact that you have voluntarily visited the Website and have provided us with contact information to signify your consent for our firm to use your contact Information for purposes of tracking our communications with you and providing you with information such as Electronic Communications relating to our Firm and our practice which we think may be of interest or use to you.
Emails from our firm – If you provide your email address, we may send to you, from time to time, email containing information about our firm and other matters it believes will interest you. At any time you may ask us to stop sending you email and other information.
Tracking Information – In addition, our firm may use non-personal information to create aggregate tracking information reports regarding Website user demographics and Website traffic patterns. None of the tracking information in the reports can be connected to the identities or other personal information of individual users. We also may link tracking information with Website users’ personal information. Once such a link is made, all of the linked information is treated as personal information and will be used and disclosed only in accordance with this Policy, and in accordance with the law.
Disclosure of Your Personal Information – Our firm may disclose your personal information to a government institution that has asserted its lawful authority to obtain the information or where we have reasonable grounds to believe the information could be useful in the investigation of unlawful activity, or to comply with a subpoena or warrant or an order made by a court, person or body with jurisdiction to compel the production of information, or to comply with court rules regarding the production of records and information, or to protect our firm’s rights and property. If our firm is involved in a merger or other reorganization, we may disclose your personal information to the resulting organization.
Storing and Securing Your Information – Our firm may store and process your personal information in our various offices in Canada. To help protect the confidentiality of your personal information, we employ security safeguards appropriate to the sensitivity of the information. Nevertheless, due to the nature of the Internet and Internet technologies, security and privacy risks cannot be eliminated and we cannot guarantee that your personal information will not be disclosed in ways not otherwise described in this Policy.
Accessing Your Personal Information – You may request access to your personal information and information about our firm’s collection, use and disclosure of that information by contacting us. Our firm has a number of Privacy Officers who are responsible for the protection of personal information and compliance with privacy-related legislation in various jurisdictions. Your enquiries will be forwarded to the appropriate Privacy Officer when it is received. Subject to certain exceptions prescribed by law, you will be given reasonable access to your personal information, and will be entitled to challenge the accuracy and completeness of the information and to have it amended as appropriate. You can help us maintain the accuracy of your information by notifying us of any changes to your personal information.
Withdrawal of Consent – In some jurisdictions, you may withdraw your consent to the use and intention of personal information about you. To do this, please contact our Privacy Officers. Additionally, we routinely provide “opt out” or “unsubscribe” instructions on our Electronic Communications to provide for removal of your name from future transmissions.
Other Websites – The Website may contain links to other Websites or Internet resources. When you click on one of those links you are contacting another Website or Internet resource that may collect information about you voluntarily or through cookies or other technologies. Our firm has no responsibility or liability for or control over those other Websites or Internet resources or their collection, use and disclosure of your personal information.
Website Use Agreement – The Website Use Agreement governing your use of the Website contains important provisions disclaiming and excluding the liability of our firm and others regarding your use of the Website and provisions determining the applicable law and exclusive jurisdiction for the resolution of any disputes regarding your use of the Website. Each of those provisions also applies to any disputes that may arise in relation to this Policy and the collection, use and disclosure of your personal information, and are of the same force and effect as if they had been reproduced directly in this Policy.
Former Users – If you stop using the Website or your permission to use the Website is terminated by our firm, we may continue to use and disclose your personal information in accordance with this Policy as amended from time to time, and subject to compliance with the law.
Electronic Communications – Generally – Electronic Communications are not to be construed as legal advice. Delivering of the same will not instantiate or begin any relationship between our firm and the recipient as Solicitor and Client. Electronic Communications are meant to provide access to information and knowledge of interest generally, and not with respect to your particular facts or circumstances. If an Electronic Communication raises any point of interest, please feel free to contact one of our professionals to arrange for a consultation.