Privacy Statement

Allied Community Legal Services recognizes the importance of an individual's right to keep personally identifiable information private. This Privacy Policy outlines how we manage your personal information and safeguard the privacy of individuals. From January 1, 2004 all organizations engaged in commercial activities in Canada, except organizations which are subject to their own substantially similar provincial legislation, must comply with the Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act ("Act"), commonly referred to as PIPEDA. PIPEDA is a statute that regulates the collection, use and disclosure of "personal information" as that term is defined in the Act, and incorporates the Canadian Standards Association Model Code for the Protection of Personal Information. Briefly, "personal information" means information about an identifiable individual; in other words, it is information by which the identity of an individual could be deduced, such as residential address and telephone number, email address, personal information related to corporate involvements, billing history, tax records and medical records. However, it does not include the name, position or title, business address or business telephone number of an employee of an organization. It also excludes specified publicly-available information, such as information listed in a public telephone directory. Allied Community Legal Services has a professional obligation to keep confidential all information received within the realm of the paralegal-client relationship.

Collection of Personal Information

We collect information only by lawful and fair means and not in any unreasonable or intrusive way. We may collect information by way of verbal or written correspondence including faxes, emails and telephone inquiries. Wherever possible, personal information is collected directly from the individual either at the start of a retainer or during the course of the representation. Depending on the work we are conducting for you, information may also be obtained from other sources, such as government agencies or registries. Because we only collect personal information which an individual would reasonably expect us to require in order to provide you with our legal services, our standard business practice is that we do not ask for written consent for us to use your personal information. In most cases, consent to the collection and use of personal information will be implied when we are provided with information we require to successfully meet the requirements of the client retainer and provide effective representation. In rare cases, we will ask for your formal consent to our collection or use of your personal information if and when the personal information will be used for purposes other than those required to provide the services you have retained us to provide.

Use and Disclosure of Personal Information

Allied Community Legal Services uses personal information of clients for the purposes of client work, such as providing legal and related services to individuals and corporations, for precedents usage, to administer client accounts, including time, billing and contact information databases, to enhance our relationship with clients and to provide legal updates which we believe to be of relevance to our clients. In addition, we may send you holiday cards and other greetings. If an individual is already a client of Allied Community Legal Services, or has been in the past, we maintain their client information to facilitate the provision of ongoing services, or anticipated future service. We may use their contact information to create Working Group Lists for future files and for mailings, as explained above. An individual may request that they not receive information about our services or about new developments in the law, and we will adjust our mailing lists accordingly. Our practice does not disclose personal information to any third party to enable them to market their products or services, but it may disclose personal information in certain circumstances, as set out below. Subject to our professional obligations to keep client information confidential, under certain circumstances the practice will disclose personal information to a third party without express client consent, including, where required, or authorized, by law (e.g. if a court issues a subpoena) or where the legal services you have retained us to provide requires us to give personal information to a third party (e.g. to a government agency for permit applications, administrative tribunals, appeal boards, and any other organization or enterprise when required for services to and for clients). Where Allied Community Legal Services is required to disclose personal information of clients to third parties for data processing (e.g. for contracted services such as photocopying, computer backup services or archival storage services) or other third party services related to services rendered to and for clients, we will ensure that those third parties agree to only use the personal information for the specified administrative purposes and agree to provide a level of protection to the information comparable to that adopted by Allied Community Legal Services.

Safeguarding Your Personal Information

Allied Community Legal Services takes all reasonable precautions to ensure that personal information is kept safe from loss or theft, unauthorized copying, use, access, modification or disclosure, including technological safeguards, such as firewalls to prevent hacking or unauthorized computer access, internal passwords and security policies, and security restricting access to offices and equipment. We note that while we take all appropriate steps to safeguard personal information under our control, there is an inherent risk involved in the exchange of information using any form of communication, such as email, telephone, fax transmission and courier service. We assume no liability for any damages you may suffer as a result of interception, alteration or misuse of information during such transfers.

Access to Personal Information

Individuals may write to Allied Community Legal Services at the address below to request access to personal information held about them. Allied Community Legal Services will provide access to this information in the manner provided for in the Act. If required or authorized by law, access to personal information may be denied.