SARNs, insurance companies & lawyers

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Has anyone issued a Subject Access Rights Notice (SARN) under the Data Protection Act on an insurance company or a firm of lawyers, as opposed to a lender? What happened?

-- Eleanor Scott (eleanor.scott@btinternet.com), February 04, 2001

Answers

Hi Eleanor,

We served one on dla. They in turn asked us for the 10 fee. Approx 5 weeks later received long winded letter from them refusing data on the grounds of "legal professional privilege". Could send you the letter if you wish - just ask. They won't return the tenner as " this is the fee to look into and deal with our request under the DPA".

Steve Pooley

-- (stephen.pooley@ntlworld.com), February 04, 2001.


I think DLA are telling fibs ! NO-ONE is allowed to withhold information they have stored electronically on you, except certain very special cases, and these are clearly documented by the Data Protection Registrar (government departments are a good rule of thumbs for these exceptions).

You'd probably need a solicitor who understands SARNs to help you now, but you should send a copy of your SARN request, proof of the 10 payment, and a copy of DLAs letter. The DPR does NOT like people withholding information and will come down quite hard on them.

I'd also advise that you write again to DLA, stating that you consider their response to be unacceptable and that they have no immunity to SARNs under the terms of the Data Protection Act. State that you will, as a gesture of goodwill, allow them a further week to provide you with the information you have requested. Remember to send the letter recorded delivery.

If you do this, and the case does somehow make it to court, I can't imagine ANY judge looking with anything other than contempt at DLA, but will be well-disposed to you as you have tried to sort the matter amicably without resorting to the courts, even in the case of extreme provocation.

As ever, what you're trying to do is to make DLA look obstructive and unco-operative (not hard to do, let's face facts here !) and make it look as though you're trying your damndest to sort things out without wasting the courts time (m'lud)....get the idea ;-)

If you need help drafting a letter drop me line - I'll be happy to help.

Incidentally, if you're wondering how I know all this it's easy - I've fought a repossession order (and won !!!) against the Halifux...I did it a few years ago before this site existed...I did it all off my own back...and I'm ALWAYS happy to put a spoke in DLAs wheels...heheheh.

-- Chris (chrishoare@btinternet.com), February 04, 2001.


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