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5 January 2004

Lord Falconer of Thoroton
Lord Chancellor's Department.
Department for Constitutional Affairs
Selborne House
54-60 Victoria Road
London
SW1E 6QW

Dear Sir

Web References (6)
Certainly worth a read in full if going to instruct this bunch….

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Chuckling Charlie Falconer recently made a speech on 'Human Rights' so let me quote a few of his remarks: - "And that means not only that it must act compatibly with people's basic rights"

"That wasn't always true, and it's the Human Rights Act which has brought greater transparency and accountability into the process"

"We need to be mature enough to listen to what others say and to engage in a dialogue with them".

"…are wrongs which need to be righted. That's what we're going to do".

"And I say this to our opponents on the right: we will not be deflected from ensuring that the people of this country know what are their rights, how they can obtain them, and how they may enforce them. Never mind the right wing: we will do the right thing".

'Is he a man of his word or is he just all words?'

 

Practice Standards Unit" Just read the load of crap Janet Paraskeva, the Law Society's Chief Executive, has to say, for instance: - "We are determined to root out bad practice and ensure that clients get the high quality service they deserve."

"It rests on a belief that self-regulation is a privilege that has to be earned, not a right to which we are entitled."

"we want to encourage solicitors to focus more on addressing their client’s concerns"

"but being tougher on ourselves is the best way to maintain the public’s trust in solicitors."

I don't know what world she lives in but it most definitely is not the same one the 'Complainants' come from.

My 'Novice' Assistant Solicitor and the OSS should have complied with the: - "OSS and OSS complaint files" 'Codes of Practice' as stated opposite, but oh no, when the Solicitors 'Protection Team' are at work the rulebook goes out the window and they just cannot stop 'blather mouthing' to each other.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Re: - Non-compliance of the Law Society's Rules
Misuse of Complainants Data Files
Violation of the Data Protection Act
Intimidation
Conspiracy
First let me quote from the:
DataProtection Act 1998
1998 Chapter 29 - continued
An Act to make new provision for the regulation of the processing of information relating to individuals, including the obtaining, holding, use or disclosure of such information.

data controller" means, subject to subsection (4), a person who (either alone or jointly or in common with other persons) determines the purposes for which and the manner in which any personal data are, or are to be, processed;

Let us look at how the Law Society state complaints data will be used:
Data Protection Notice
We will use the information you give us to investigate your complaint. We will not use that information for any unconnected purpose without your consent. We will have to reveal your information to the firm or solicitor you have complained about. We may also have to reveal that information to our agents (people acting on our behalf) and to others involved in:

What should an individual do if they are not satisfied that their information has been processed as stated by the Law Society rulebook:
http://www.informationcommissioner.gov.uk/eventual.aspx?id=1037&expmovie=1
"If you believe that the data controller is not processing in accordance with your rights you should ensure that you have made every effort to resolve this direct with the individual or organization concerned"
I don't believe it can be said that I have left any stone unturned.

Of course you will also be aware during this process and while these records are held the Law Society, I believe, are the 'data controller' and responsible for this 'data protection'.

If you look at the letter I wrote to the LSO dated 21 May 2003, copy enclosed, I have highlighted relevant sections where information has been supplied by the 'Data Controller' to third parties that has no relevance at all to my complaint. Not only that, but this was done during a period while my complaint was not live.

A quick look at an article in the Consumer Magazine that just has to make you smile:
WHICH?
02-08-2001 Complaints against solicitors underline the need for a shake-up
The Law Society has recently taken steps to modernise itself. It has developed a strategy to tackle problems, which includes setting up a Practice Standards Unit whose main focus will be to ensure solicitors comply with the profession's client care rules. Failure to comply could lead to disciplinary action.

Question: Who, how or where can this 'Practice Standards Unit' be contacted?

Let us look at, at least three occasions that 'blather mouthing' went on that clearly shows my rights have been violated by the Law Society:
1
The passing of information from the OSS to my solicitors' on 7 June 2000 to assist in my sacking which was before my file became 'live' see Doc.1 written by my Solicitor at the time, Xxxx Xxxxxxxxxx (you must realize, by the Law Society's rules, the discussing of my sacking has nothing at all to do with my file and that data should have been used only in connection with my complaint, not my 'sacking').
2

If you read the highlighted section of a letter sent to me from the OSS dated 20 Nov 2000 (Doc.2) it will be seen information was passed to the OSS possibly from Mr Higgins QC or my solicitors at the time, Panesar & Co, whichever, they never had my permission to pass any information, confidential or otherwise, to anybody:

Confidential Information
2.03 (1) A lawyer at all times shall hold in strict confidence all information concerning the business and affairs of the client acquired in the course of the professional relationship and shall not divulge any such information unless expressly or impliedly authorized by the client or required by law to do so.
Commentary
The duties imposed by this rule concerning confidential information should be distinguished from the general ethical duty to hold in strict confidence all information concerning the business and affairs of the client acquired in the course of the professional relationship, which duty applies wit
hout regard to the nature or source of the information or to the fact that others may share the knowledge.

3

If you read a letter I sent to Richard Hegarty (Doc.5), Chair or the Compliance Board, it will be seen he sought information on me from some 'third party' within the Law Society, possibly the OSS, for his own use that also had no bearing on my complaint to the OSS then if you read the highlighted section of the letter Janet Paraskeva wrote to me dated 14 Nov 2003 (Doc.4) you will see my file is 'closed' and as she said "will remain closed". If he (Richard Hegarty) required any information, other than in my correspondence to him, he should have used the correct procedures that he must have been aware of:

OSS and OSS complaint files
The Code applies to the OSS as part of the Law Society, but complaint files will not be disclosable except to the data subject and to the extent permissible under the Act. However, as stated in paragraph B.3.2, findings of OSS adjudications will be disclosable, in so far as this is permissible under the Act.

All requests for information in accordance with this Code shall be in writing, addressed to the Chief Executive, and shall be signed by the person making the request.

A request may be for a specific item of information, or for information within a specific category, or for information related to a specific subject or topic, or a combination of these.

Handling of requests for information
A request for information shall be acknowledged by or on behalf of the Chief Executive within 14 days of its receipt.

If you read the letter I wrote to Richard Hegarty (Doc.5), highlighted in green, it will be clear that if he had asked for this 'unrelated information from my closed complaints file' it most definitely should have been denied by the data controller.

I also believe that the reason the OSS took over two years to allot my complaint to a Caseworker and then totally ignored my complaint of their collusion with my solicitors on 7 June 2000 was because they were aware they had not complied with their own rules and must be guilty of Professional Misconduct at least and as my file was closed at the time, they had violated the Data Protection Act.

I could never understand why Zahida Manzoor persistently ignored the fact that collusion between the OSS and my solicitors had taken place on 7 June 2000 while my file was closed and its contents were discussed to give them reasons to sack me. Well it is clear now she knew the OSS had not complied with the Law Society's rules and were guilty of at least Professional Misconduct. So much for her 'little blue book' that states, "unbiased investigation".

While we are talking about Zahida Manzoor who was appointed as LSO by your predecessor and since appointed by yourself to lead 'Oflaw' and supposedly is a 'Layperson' then if it is found it was her who passed my personal information to Richard Hegarty then I believe the Law Society have serious problems that must be addressed.

My final conclusion is that the Law Society are treating Complainants' complaint files as if they are a 'Criminal Record Bank' for the advantage of all or any member of the Law Society that they could be of benefit to regardless of any rules at all. The point is this has been done to me three times that I know of so out of some 200,000 complaints in the last ten years it must be staggering how bad the situation must be. I believe the OSS would be classed as the 'data controller' and by receiving unrelated information and giving out information from closed or unopened files must be guilty of Professional Misconduct/Violation of Complainants Rights/Breach of the Data Protection Act or all three. You tell me!

At this point I do not believe anyone could say I have not tried just about every avenue within the Law Society and that included your Chair of the Compliance who referred to me as a "disgruntled complainant" then rang me on the 6 Nov '03 at 6.15pm trying to intimidate me. You through your advocate, James Shutlar, have tried the intimidation road by saying, 'if I don't like it take us to the High Court'.

By now I think you are aware that I am, with very good reasons, very concerned about how information, personal and otherwise, is being illegally passed around by members of the Law Society, so let me quote my rights

If you have any concerns or feel that a breach of the Data Protection Act 1998 has taken place, then you need to contact the person or organisation you believe has breached the Act (data controller).

You should write to the data controller explaining your concerns. You should expect a reasonable response within 40 working days; we recommend that you send them a reminder by recorded delivery (remembering to keep a copy).

If you don't receive a response to this reminder you make a request for assessment from the Information Commissioner. Before doing this you should refer to our guidance on making a Request for Assessment .

Right of Subject Access
This is the right to find out what information about you is held on computer and in some paper records.

You have the right to have inaccurate personal data rectified, erased or destroyed.

First of all I would like all the information held by Richard Hegarty, Chair of the Compliance Board, with the exception of any correspondence I have recently sent him, I would like to know how he obtained it, from where and whom.

Second, Doc.2 shows information was either passed to the OSS or it was solicited from either Mr Higgins QC or my solicitors at the time 'Panesar & Co'. This information must have been documented at the time by the OSS and I would like copies of this data and the method in which it was obtained.

Third, Doc.1 written
my 'Novice' Assistant Solicitor on 7 June 2000 shows collusion took place between my solicitors and a Mr Fise at the OSS, this must have been documented by the OSS and the contents of this conversation was never made known to me by anybody which it should have been at the time. I would like all this relevant information, if it doesn't exist then it must be clear a conspiracy took place to bring about my sacking.

At this point you might say that you are not the person I should be approaching so who should it be, bearing in mind it appears numerous members/departments of the Law Society now hold legal as well as illegal data on me, the OSS and the LSO would not answer my questions, the Chair of the Compliance Board couldn't care less about the rules and Janet Paraskeva who replied on behalf of the President of the Law Society didn't give any answer to my questions, what do you do? You have told me 'if I don't like it, take us to the High Court' so please tell me what purpose does your rulebook serve if every time it is questioned you shout 'take us to the High Court'? The Law Society are supposedly 'self regulating', tell me, how is that so? If any of your rules don't suit you at anytime you ignore them, you misuse the data in the Complainants' files and if the Complainants should 'speak-up' about their treatment you resought to 'intimidation'. I have stated in the past, the Law Society is corrupt and I don't see anything to change my mind.

After you have read Doc.3 you will possibly understand why I tried hard to get the OSS and the LSO to address the 'non-compliance' of the Client Care Agreement then why I tried to get various members of the Law Society to explain it's 'validity', all to no avail. I believe the 'Client Care Agreement', as I was asked to sign it, must amount to a legal contract and as it was not honoured by my solicitors, as clear evidence shows (Doc.3), it should have been reasonable to expect the OSS to investigate as I requested. You, the Lord Chancellor, have backed up the Law Society's 'avoidance of the rules' with intimidation by implying 'if I don't like it, take us to the High Court'. This is violation of the Law Society's rules and my rights as a Solicitor's client.

If you pass this on to any other department that is OK although from now on I want to know who and where any data that concerns me is being processed, I also realise that you are in a very precarious position, for instance I'm aware that:
Data Protection Act 1998
The Tribunal shall consist of: -
(a) a chairman appointed by the Lord Chancellor after consultation with the Lord Advocate,
(b) such number of deputy chairmen so appointed as the Lord Chancellor may determine, and
(c) such number of other members appointed by the Secretary of State as he may determine.
    1. The solicitors refused to honour the Client Care Agreement (contract).
    2. The OSS gave no assistance when I asked them to intervene when the Senior Partner refused to see me 'item 1 Doc.3'.
    3. The OSS failed to inform me of a free Professional Legal Advice service if the Complainant makes a claim of negligence against their solicitors.
    4. The OSS refused to investigate 'item 1'.
    5. The OSS refused to investigate their failure at 'item 2'.
    6. The OSS colluded in my sacking by my solicitors in giving information, from my unopened file, to them on 7 June 2000, Doc.1.
    7. The OSS did not investigate their collusion on 7 June 2000 with my solicitors Doc.1.
    8. The OSS had a duty, during my complaint to them, to inform me of item 6 as this was kept quiet it must amount to a 'conspiracy' between the OSS and my solicitors.
    9. The LSO refused, even though I continually broached the subject, to investigate or instruct the OSS to re-look at 'items 1,2,3,4,6 7and 8' (Zahida Manzoor wrote an article similar to 'item 1' that she described as "ludicrous" and stated "things have got to change", 'what a joke she is'.
    10. The Chair of the Compliance Board has illegally sought out personal information on me so allowing himself to 'phone me at home in an effort to intimidate me.
    11. The Lord Chancellor has tried the 'intimidation' road by telling me 'if I don't like it (the Law Society's avoidance of the rules), take us to the High Court'.
    12. The Law Society failed to use and protect my data files in a correct and responsible way, not only have they not complied with their own rules, but they have violated the Data Protection Act.

Remember, all I have asked from the beginning is that you complied with and enforced your own rules but for some reason you all believe the rules don't apply to members of the Law Society, it appears the 'Rule of Thumb' that applies within the Law Society is, 'Ignore, Avoidance' or take us to the High Court.

Yours sincerely

B R G

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