Privacy Policy

knowmore is committed to protecting your privacy and the confidentiality of the Personal Information you provide to us. We will:

  • only collect the information we need to provide the best services we can to you and other members of the public who may need our help
  • not share your information with another agency in any way that could identify you, without your consent, except in exceptional circumstances where we are compelled or authorised to do so by law – for example, to protect you, a child or another person from the risk of serious harm
  • keep your information secure and protect it from unauthorised access, and
  • allow you to access your information and to change any details that are incorrect.

This policy sets out our approach in relation to the collection, use and disclosure of Personal Information. In providing legal services (Services), knowmore collects, uses and may disclose Personal Information about individuals which is information that can be used to (or is reasonably likely to) identify an individual (Personal Information). We handle that Personal Information in accordance with the Australian Privacy Principles (APP) under the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (Privacy Act) and comply with the Spam Act 2003 (Cth) which regulates the sending of emails for marketing purposes.

A copy of the Australian Privacy Principles may be obtained from the website of The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner at www.aoic.gov.au

What is Personal Information and why do we collect it?

Personal Information is information or an opinion that identifies an individual. We mainly collect Personal Information in the process of taking instructions to provide Services. This Personal Information is obtained in many ways including interviews, correspondence, by telephone and facsimile, and by email.

We may collect Personal Information to assist you with your legal matter. This may include records from your previous lawyer and documents relating to a prior claim. If we think collecting Personal Information on your behalf would be useful for your legal matter, we will discuss this with you beforehand and seek your consent.

Where we collect this Personal Information on your behalf we will explain to you how we plan to use it.

We collect, hold, use and may disclose Personal Information for the principle purpose of providing Services and to support and enable the provision of Services. We may also use your Personal Information for secondary purposes closely related to the principle purpose, in circumstances where you would reasonably expect such use or disclosure, or where we are compelled or authorised by law.

We may need to collect Personal information in order to satisfy the requirements of agreements relating to the funding of knowmore. We are obliged under those agreements to provide information such as the numbers of clients assisted, the types of Services delivered and some broad demographic data about the people we help.

We will only provide de-identified information to our funders, and we will ensure it is not possible to identify any individual client from these reports.

The kinds of Personal Information collected

We may collect the following types of Personal Information:

  • Identity Information: Personal details including but not limited to name, location, date of birth, nationality, details of licenses & registrations, associations, family details, employment details and other information that allows us to identify who individuals are.
  • Contact Information: Information including but not limited to email address, telephone & fax number, residential, business and postal address and other information that allows us to contact an individual.

Information that Individuals provide to us:

Information, instructions or correspondence that individuals provide to us.

  • We may collect other Personal Information about Individuals, which we will maintain in accordance with this Privacy Policy.
  • We do not generally collect health, medical and other sensitive information about individuals unless we collect it from you directly, from others with your consent, or we are required or authorised by law to do so e.g. the obtaining of medical reports in the context of providing Services.
  • If the Personal Information is not able to be collected it may restrict the level or types of services which we can provide to an individual.

Sensitive Information

We only collect Sensitive Information in the process of taking instructions to provide Services.

Sensitive information is defined in the Privacy Act to include information or opinion about such things as an individual’s racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, membership of a political association, religious or philosophical beliefs, membership of a trade union or other professional body, criminal record or health information.

Sensitive information will be used by us only:

  • For the primary purpose for which it was obtained
  • For a secondary purpose that is directly related to the primary purpose
  • With your consent; or where required or authorised by law.

Third Parties

Where reasonable and practicable to do so, we will collect your Personal Information only from you. However, in some circumstances we may be provided with information by third parties. In such a case we will take reasonable steps to ensure that you are made aware of the information provided to us by the third party.

Disclosure of Personal Information

Your Personal Information may be disclosed in a number of circumstances including the following:

  • Third parties where you consent to the use or disclosure;
  • To our professional indemnity insurers, if necessary for insurance purposes; and
  • Where required or authorised by law, such as under compulsion of a subpoena, or to protect you or another person from imminent risk of serious harm.

knowmore employs social workers and counsellors to deliver support and counselling services to clients who need that support. Our social workers and counsellors are subject to laws in all states and territories of Australia, and ethical obligations imposed by their codes of conduct and professional standards, that require reporting of information to relevant government authorities about possible incidents of child abuse or risks to children. This policy provides notice to clients that if they are dealing with our counsellors or social workers and they provide information to them that suggests that a child is currently experiencing or is at risk of abuse, including neglect, this may enliven our counsellors’ reporting obligations.

This applies in any situations where a client may be receiving assistance from a counsellor or social worker, including in the presence of a lawyer and for the purposes of receiving legal advice.

In some jurisdictions these reporting requirements may extend to other workers of our service, including lawyers. In these situations, we will seek to explain to clients that these obligations apply.

Storage and security of your Personal Information

  • We take reasonable steps to ensure the security of all Personal Information we collect and ensure that such information is protected from misuse and loss and from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.
  • We hold Personal Information on a secure database which can be accessed only by authorised personnel and in paper files which are stored in locked cabinets.
  • Personal Information will be retained by knowmore for as long as is necessary to provide the Services and for a reasonable time after the provision of the services ends. Under the Community Legal Centre’s Risk Management Guide, we must retain all files, which may include Personal Information, for a period of seven (7) years after completion or termination of the Services except where there are client instructions or legislation to the contrary.

Access to Personal Information

  • An individual has the right to obtain access to any Personal Information held about them by us and to advise us of any inaccuracy.
  • To make a request to access any information held about you, please contact us at lawyer@knowmore.org.au or write to us at the postal address provided below.

We may require you to verify your identity and specify what information you require.

Maintaining the Quality of your Personal Information

It is an important to us that your Personal Information is up to date. We will take reasonable steps to make sure that your Personal Information is accurate, complete and up-to-date. If you find that the information we have is not up to date or is inaccurate, please advise us as soon as practicable so we can update our records and ensure we can continue to provide quality services to you.

Complaints

If you have a concern about how we handle your Personal Information, please let us know. Your concern should be addressed in writing to principal.lawyer@knowmore.org.au or to the postal address provided below. If our response to the concern is considered by you to be unsatisfactory you can raise it with the Australian Information Commissioner at http://www.oaic.gov.au/privacy/privacy-complaints.

knowmore Legal Service Limited
Level 7, 26 College Street
Sydney NSW 2000
ACN 639 490 912

Overseas disclosure

We do not disclose Personal Information to any overseas recipient except with the consent of the individual in relation to the provision of Services.

Changes to this privacy policy

This privacy policy may change from time to time without notice to ensure we comply with our legal obligations. Any changes to the Privacy Policy will be posted on our website.