Could I Claim If My Dismissal Or Disciplinary Information Was Breached At Work?
This guide explores the steps you could take if your dismissal or disciplinary information is compromised in a personal data breach. In the UK, personal data is protected by the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018. This legislation sets out the regulations that data controllers and processors must follow and personal data breach compensation eligibility criteria.
We look at examples of how a personal data breach could occur, and what a personal data breach is. We also look at the different types of personal data that a breach could include.
If you would like to claim compensation, we examine the eligibility criteria. We also examine the types of compensation you could claim and how much you could potentially receive should your claim succeed.
You can contact our advisors if a colleague has breached your personal information. They can provide free legal advice and identify if you have a valid claim. If this is the case, they may be able to put you in contact with a solicitor from our expert panel.
To get in touch, you can:
Select A Section
- What Is Dismissal Or Disciplinary Information?
- Types Of Error Leading To Dismissal Or Disciplinary Information Being Breached By A Work Colleague
- How Could Workplace Data Breaches Be Prevented?
- Could I Claim If Dismissal Or Disciplinary Information Was Breached And Disclosed To A Colleague?
- Calculate Compensation If Your Dismissal Or Disciplinary Information Was Breached By A Work Colleague
- Start A Claim Against Your Employer
A personal data breach is a security incident that affects the confidentiality, availability, or integrity of your personal data, which is any information that could identify you. This includes personal data in the workplace, such as information regarding disciplinary actions made against you or information relating to your dismissal.
If this information is compromised, this could cause significant harm both financially and to your mental well-being. However, to make a personal data breach claim, you must be able to prove that:
- The breach was a result of the organisation’s failings
- You suffered harm as a result of the breach
- Your personal data was part of the breach
The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is an independent body set up to help protect data security. As part of their role, they enforce data protection legislation and provide guidance on proper data protection protocol to data controllers and processors. The ICO cannot provide compensation, but it can impose fines on organisations that do not comply with legislation.
Our advisors can tell you if you have a valid claim following a breach of your dismissal or disciplinary information when you get in touch today.
Human error could cause a colleague to breach your dismissal or disciplinary information. For example, your dismissal letter could be sent to the wrong postal address. If you changed your address and informed your employer, it is up to them to update this information. Failure to do so could be a breach of data protection law. Additionally, a personal data breach could occur if your disciplinary information is sent to the wrong email address.
Unauthorised access to disciplinary and dismissal information could also occur if paperwork containing this information is left in an insecure location. For example, left on a desk or on a computer with no password protection. Additionally, a stolen device could also result in a personal data breach.
Our advisors can discuss further examples of personal data breaches should you have any questions.
It is up to organisations to provide their staff with data protection training. This could include cybersecurity training as well as training for physical records and data protection. For example, guidance on redacting physical documents and proper personal data storage.
You might wonder what personal data a colleague could disclose in a personal data breach. Most employers have access to both personal data and a kind of personal data known as special category data.
Personal data includes:
- Email address
- Phone number
- Debit and credit card information
Special category data requires extra protection according to data protection legislation. It includes:
- Trade union membership
- Nationality and ethnic background
- Biometric data
- Medical information
Our advisors can provide free legal advice and more help surrounding your claim when you get in touch.
If your dismissal or disciplinary information was breached, your employer should tell you without undue delay if the breach could affect your rights or freedoms. Alongside this, they must report the breach to the ICO within 72 hours.
You could complain to the organisation if you suspect your personal data was exposed in a data breach. If they do not respond, or the response is unsatisfactory, you can complain to the ICO.
Communications between yourself and the organisation could support a personal data breach claim. Additionally, if the ICO confirms that your personal data has been compromised, this could also support your claim.
Get in touch with our advisors today to find out how a specialist data protection solicitor from our panel could help you with your claim.
Calculate Compensation If Your Dismissal Or Disciplinary Information Was Breached By A Work Colleague
Two heads could make up your claim for a breach of dismissal or disciplinary information. These are:
Material damage: If you experience financial loss due to the data breach, you may be able to claim these losses back. For example, if you suffer damage to your credit score or fraudulent withdrawals are made from your account.
Prior to the Vidal-Hall and others v. Google Inc. (2015) Court of Appeal ruling, you could only claim non-material damage if you simultaneously claimed material damage. Since the ruling, you can claim for harm to your mental health without also claiming for material damage.
To help assign value to your personal data breach claim, legal professionals may use the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG). This document contains a list of injuries, including mental suffering, alongside compensation brackets. We’ve provided examples of figures from the 16th edition, released in April 2022 in the table below.
|PTSD||Severe (a)||£59,860 - £100,670||All areas of life are badly impacted on a permanent basis by symptoms that cause an inability to function at the same levels as before the trauma.|
|PTSD||Moderately severe (b)||£23,150 - £59,860||A professional will make some recovery possible, but the symptoms cause a significant disability that will last into the foreseeable future.|
|PTSD||Moderate (c)||£8,180 - £23,150||There might be some lingering symptoms that do not cause a gross disability, but, a recovery has largely taken place.|
|PTSD||Less severe (d)||£3,950 - £8,180||A virtual full recovery takes place, however, minor symptoms might appear past 1-2 years.|
|Psychiatric harm||Severe (a)||£54,830 - £115,730||An inability to cope with life and relationships occurs. This has a very poor prognosis at this severity.|
|Psychiatric harm||Moderately severe (b)||£19,070 - £54,830||Significant problems in both life and with relationships occur, but the prognosis is more optimistic than in severe psychiatric harm.|
|Psychiatric harm||Moderate (c)||£5,860 - £19,070||Problems have occurred functioning in life and with relationships, but the claimant experiences improvements and the prognosis is good.|
|Psychiatric harm||Less severe (d)||£1,540 - £5,860||A period of disability occurs. This impacts day-to-day activities and sleep.|
Our advisors can provide you with a free estimate of what your claim could be worth when you get in touch today.
If you would like to hire a solicitor to help guide you through your claim, you could instruct a No Win No Fee data breach solicitor from our experienced panel. A No Win No Fee solicitor could offer their services using a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA).
You don’t pay any upfront or ongoing solicitors’ fees when using a CFA. Instead, your solicitor will take a success fee from your award if it is successful. However, if your claim is unsuccessful, you will not pay this fee. This allows you to get expert legal advice without paying the traditionally associated high costs.
Our advisors can discuss the breach of your dismissal or disciplinary information. If your claim is valid, a No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel may be able to help.
To speak to an advisor:
The following links might be helpful:
- Making a Data Protection Complaint Guide from the Government
- Claiming Compensation Guide by the ICO
- NHS Stress Guide
Additional data breach guides: