In May of 2018, the European Union’s GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) went into effect. The GDPR comes with and enforces strict new rules regarding the handling of personal data by businesses and organizations operating in the EU.
These rules apply to any business or organization that processes the personal information of EU citizens, no matter where the business is located.
For law firms and other legal businesses, complying with the GDPR can be a challenge. This is because law firms often deal with large amounts of sensitive personal data, such as client information, case files, and contact details.
In addition, many law firms have clients who are based in the EU. As a result, it is essential for law firms to take steps to ensure that they are in compliance with the GDPR.
### Complying with the GDPR
There are a number of ways that law firms can comply with the GDPR. One of the most important things that law firms can do is to make sure that their website is compliant.
Another way that law firms can comply with the GDPR is by ensuring that they have a valid legal basis for processing personal data. The GDPR requires that personal data can only be processed if there is a valid legal basis for doing so.
There are a number of legal bases that could be used, such as the consent of the individual, the performance of a contract, or the legitimate interests of the firm.
Finally, law firms should also take steps to ensure that personal data they process is accurate and up-to-date. They should also take steps to protect personal data from loss, misuse, and unauthorized access.
By taking these steps, law firms can help to ensure that they are compliant with the GDPR. And in doing so, they’ll provide better protection for their patients.
### How the GDPR Affects Law Practices
The GDPR is the European Union’s new data protection regulation. It replaces the 1995 EU Data Protection Directive. The GDPR was designed to give EU citizens more control over their personal data. It also strengthens EU data protection rules.
Under the GDPR, all data controllers must appoint a Data Protection Officer (DPO), and must implement risk management processes, and establish an incident response plan. These are intended to help organizations deal with data breaches, protect EU citizens’ personal data, and adhere to principles of data minimization and data accuracy.
Also according to the GDPR, law firms must take steps to protect the personal data of their clients and employees from unauthorized access, use, disclosure, or destruction.
They must also ensure that personal data is accurate and up-to-date and take steps to delete or correct inaccurate data. In addition, law firms must provide individuals with a right of access to their personal data and a right to have that data erased under certain circumstances.
There are serious fines imposed on any company that violates the provisions of the GDPR. These fines can be as much as 4% of annual global revenue or €20 million.
The GDPR does not apply to every organization. However, if your law firm processes the personal information of EU citizens, you must comply with the GDPR.
### What You Can Do to Update Your Practices
If you want to get a head start on updating your practices in order to comply with GDPR, here are some things you can do:
●Review any contact lists you have, such as mailing lists and email newsletters, and make sure that everyone on the list has given their explicit consent to be contacted.
●Update your contact forms, registration forms, and other online forms to collect only the information that you absolutely need and make it clear to visitors what you will do with their information.
●If you have a blog, review the comments policy to make sure it complies with GDPR. This includes ensuring that commenters have the option to opt-out of having their data used for marketing purposes.
●Take a look at any third-party services you use on your website, such as social media plugins, and make sure that they are GDPR compliant.
●If you have an eCommerce component to your website, review your payment processing options to ensure that they are compliant with GDPR.
●Consider adding a data protection officer to your team, or at least someone who is responsible for ensuring compliance with GDPR.
●Make sure that all of your employees, contractors, and vendors are aware of GDPR and your policies and procedures for compliance.
●Finally, keep up to date on the latest GDPR developments and updates to ensure that you are always in compliance.
By taking these steps, law firms can help to ensure that they are in compliance with GDPR regulations.
### Need Help? Contact LawWorks Today
If you have any questions or need assistance getting your law firm or website up-to-date, contact LawWorks today. We are here to help you ensure that your law firm is in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations.
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