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Mussio Goodman (BC) and Mussio Goodman Hamilton (Alberta) is committed to protecting the privacy of personal information provided to us. Personal information includes any information that can be used to identify an individual.
It is important that our clients understand that by retaining us to provide legal services, they are consenting to the collection, use, and disclosure of their personal information for the purpose of enabling us to act for them in relation to the particular legal matter for which they have engaged us.
Collection of Personal Information
In order to provide high quality legal services, we need to collect a broad range of personal information from our clients, prospective clients, and other parties. Sometimes, the collection of this information is required by legislation or by order of a Court or tribunal.
Most of the personal information we collect is obtained from clients when they instruct us, and subsequently as we act for them in a legal matter.
Due to the nature of legal work, however, it is not always possible to collect information from an individual directly. For instance, if we are acting for a child or a dependent adult in a matter, we may need to collect information from their guardian or trustee. We may also need to collect personal information from other parties involved in litigation, or from lawyers, employers, hospitals, trade unions, relevant government agencies, courts and tribunals.
We also collect personal information from, and about, employees and potential employees, for various purposes including determining appropriate levels of compensation, evaluating performance and administering payroll and benefits.
The personal information we collect may include sensitive financial or health-related information.
We collect personal information in a variety of ways: in writing, in person, on the telephone, through our website, and by other electronic communication.
Use and Disclosure of Personal Information
The personal information we collect is used for the purpose of advancing our clients’ legal interests. We may disclose personal information to others in certain circumstances to properly assess and deal with a legal matter.
Disclosure of personal information may take place in situations permitted under Provincial or Federal legislation. The disclosure may be required by law or by order of a Court or tribunal. We may also disclose personal information to others, such as lawyers representing other parties, consultants or expert witnesses asked to provide advice or services on behalf of our clients. Such disclosures are subject to the rules of the various Courts or tribunals in which our clients’ cases proceed.
Beyond these circumstances, the personal information collected by our firm is mainly for internal use, except that, in the case of our employees and partners, we disclose personal information to payroll administrators and third party benefit suppliers when necessary for the administration of payroll and benefits. We take reasonable contractual steps to ensure that third parties to whom we may disclose personal information provide a comparable level of personal information protection.
Within reasonable legal limits, we collect, use and disclose personal information only with the consent of the person involved. In certain circumstances, privacy legislation authorizes the collection, use or disclosure of personal information without the consent of the individual such as to respond to emergencies or where obtaining consent would be similarly unnecessary or inappropriate.
Subject to reasonable and lawful conditions, an individual may withdraw or vary consent for our collection, use, and disclosure of his or her personal information at any time with prior written notice to us.
Retention of Personal Information
Privacy legislation stipulates that personal information need not be retained longer than is reasonably necessary.
When our legal services to a client are concluded, we close the file. We may, in our sole discretion, destroy duplicate materials before closing the file.
We practice client file retention practices in accordance with Law Society guidelines. We may also retain employees’ personal information after they leave employment.
We will maintain our client file retention practices which mandate that files be closed and stored for periods up to ten (10) years beyond the conclusion of the matter.
Changes to Policy
We reserve the right to change this policy at any time. Please review this policy statement from time to time to ensure that you are aware of and accept any changes that have been made.