Legal notices and policies

Links to third party sites

  • Any links to third party websites are provided to you only as a convenience. The inclusion of any link does not imply endorsement of that website, and I am not liable for the content of any site to which I link.

Accuracy of website content

  • I work hard to ensure that the information contained on this site is accurate and up-to-date. However, the law changes quickly and it is possible that errors and omissions may occur from time to time. The material on this site is designed to be helpful, but does not constitute – and nor is it designed to replace – legal advice. Please do not act in reliance on any information contained within this site, without first checking directly the accuracy of the information with me or by taking specialised legal advice that is tailored to your situation. I therefore disclaim all liability for your use of the information on this site.

Cyber crime and scams

  • Cyber crime is on the increase, so it’s important to be vigilant and look out for anything suspicious. A scam is a type of fraud that criminals use to trick you into giving them money and personal details. Fraudsters often use the names of lawyers, barristers and law firms to make themselves appear genuine and increase their chances of tricking victims into sending money to them. Scams can take the form of emails, text messages, telephone calls or direct mail which can seem legitimate and very convincing. It is important to be vigilant and carefully verify any unusual requests or suspicious communications purporting to come from me. Be particularly careful if someone is asking you to send sensitive personal information or money, or purports to notify you of changes to important business information by email. If you receive unusual communications purporting to be from me about which you are uncertain or suspicious, please me immediately. You can email tom@tom-bradford.com.

Equality policy

  • I am committed to equal opportunities in all aspects of my work.
  • I observe the Bar Council Code of Conduct in relation to non discrimination in the acceptance of work, the carrying out of that work and all dealing with clients and others and am committed to comply with this Policy
  • Statement of intent
    • I value the rich diversity and creative potential that men and women with differing backgrounds and abilities bring and wish positively to encourage a culture of equal opportunities for all in which personal success depends upon personal merit and performance. I am firmly committed to achieving equality of opportunity and to ensuring at all times that no-one should be treated less favourably on the grounds of their sex, sexual orientation, marital status, colour, race, nationality (including citizenship) or ethnic or national origin or on the grounds of disability, religion or age without justification.
    • This policy will apply to every aspect of life within my chambers as a potential future employer of staff, provider of services to the public, selection of pupils, recruitment of new tenants, relationships and treatment of third parties visiting me.
    • This policy includes the outlawing of harassment and victimisation which I recognise as being forms of discrimination. Examples of behaviour which may amount to harassment or victimisation when based on a person’s race, sex, sexual orientation or disability are:-
      • Compromising suggestions or invitations
      • Offensive remarks or ridicule
      • Jokes or insensitive remarks
      • Exclusion from social networks and activities.
    • Harassment on any of the grounds mentioned above is a particular form of discrimination which will not be tolerated. It is conduct which is unwanted and a characteristic of it is that it undermines the victim’s dignity at work and can create a hostile or humiliating working environment not only for the victim but for others. Barristers have a personal responsibility to behave in a manner which is not offensive to others.
    • Harassment can include:-
      • – verbal conduct, for example insulting or abusive comments,
      • – innuendo, lewd remarks, unwelcome propositions;
    • Section 5 of the Public Order Act 1986 creates a criminal offence where a person uses (a) threatening or abusive or insulting words or behaviour or disorderly behaviour; or (b) displays any writing sign or other visible representation which is threatening or insulting within the hearing or sight of a person likely to be caused harassment, alarm or distress.
  • Disability
    • I will make reasonable adjustments to employment arrangements or to physical features of the premises to ensure that those who suffer from a disability are not unjustifiably disadvantaged in comparison with persons who are not disabled. One should remember that should they be guilty of an act of discrimination then this may be actionable or result in disciplinary action.
    • Chambers further recognises that it may also be guilty of discrimination if it allows any third party to act in a discriminatory way when it could have reasonably prevented that from occurring. Chambers is committed to ensuring that this does not occur.
  • The legislation
    • This Equality Policy is designed to ensure that all anti-discrimination legislation is fully complied with.
    • Chambers is also fully committed to the following guidance given in various Codes of Practice and Guidance:-
      • (i) The Equal Opportunities Commission Code of Practice on sex discrimination, equal opportunity policies, procedures and practices in employment.
      • (ii) The Commission for Racial Equality Code of Practice on racial equality in employment.
      • (iii) (a) The Disability rights Commission Code of Practice Employment and occupation.
      • (iii) (b) The Guidance on matters to be taken into account in determining questions relating to the definition of disability.
      • (iv) The Equal Opportunities Commission Code of Practice on Equal Pay.
      • (v) Age diversity at work: A practical guide for business.
      • (vi) The Equality Code for the Bar.
  • Scope of the policy
    • This policy applies to all aspects of Chambers’ operations. Of particular concern, although not exclusively are:-
    • (a) Pupillage
      • I am not taking on pupils but in the event that I were to in future, then I would do so in accordance with the aims of this policy document.
    • (b) The recruitment of established practitioners
      • I do not intend to recruit, but were I to, then applicants will be selected in accordance with the aims of this policy document.
    • (c) The recruitment of staff
      • I do not intend to recruit, but were I to, then applicants will be selected in accordance with the aims of this policy document.
    • Monitoring
      • I recognise the importance of monitoring so as to ensure effective implementation of this Equality Policy. Thus, in seeking to identify and eliminate sources of unintended discrimination, Chambers shall monitor any consideration of applications for pupillage, the recruitment of established practitioners, the career development and marketing of tenants, parental leave entitlement; the recruitment of staff; the allocation of work.
    • Complaints / grievance procedure
      • Chambers recognises that there may be particularly sensitive complaints where embarrassment, fear of causing a feud, of being labelled or of adverse judgement may prevent a complaint being made in the first place. Chambers is therefore committed that as far as practicable names of complainants shall not be released (save to those persons conducting the investigation and to the person complained against) without their consent. Equally, complainants will not be victimised or suffer detriment because of a complaint made in good faith.
      • A person subject to discrimination in any form may at their choosing deal with the matter in a number of ways:-
        • (i) Voicing a concern: where an aggrieved person merely wishes to voice their concerns and no more they may approach me. This is primarily intended to provide support and advice without the matter going any further.
        • (ii) Informal complaint: the second option is the lodging of an informal complaint. This can be done orally to me. An informal complaint is designed to act as a method for resolving disputes without the need for a formal investigation to determine the issues.
        • (iii) Formal complaint: the third option is the lodging of a formal complaint. This must be made in writing to tom@tom-bradford.com and I will arrange for it to be independently investigated. If actual or potential discrimination has been found remedial steps will be taken immediately.
      • Every complainant has a right to consult with the Bar Council Equal Opportunities Office for confidential advice and to lodge a formal complaint of professional misconduct with the Bar Council. Complaints of unlawful discrimination have a legal right to apply subject to time limits to the County Court or for Chambers’ employers to the Industrial Tribunal. The Commission for Racial Equality and the Equal Opportunities Commission are also available for consultation.
    • Appeals
      • Any appeals against any decision taken in respect of Chambers’ Equality Policy may be made through the grievance procedure or, as appropriate, a disciplinary procedure.
    • Awareness
      • Copies of this Equality Policy shall be provided to any future pupils, staff or members of Chambers who will accept their duty to comply with this policy.

Complaints policy

  • If you ever have any concerns about the service you are receiving from me the best way to resolve it early is to send an email to tom@tom-bradford.com and I will get back to you within 48 hours with some assistance and, hopefully, a resolution. In the first instance I hope that any concerns raised can be dealt with directly by me through open and responsive communication. Although I hope my clients never have cause to use it, I also have a very simple and thorough complaints procedure in place to ensure that any concerns get dealt with quickly and appropriately. The procedure is as follows:
  • 1. If a quick email won’t help you resolve your concerns then it is likely that you have what I call “a substantive complaint”.
  • 2. A substantive complaint is one which is about a matter which covers negligence, incompetence or a significant shortfall in the level of service my clients are entitled to expect. It may be in writing, by email, by fax or by telephone.The address for complaints is: Complaints, 483 Green Lanes, London, N13 4BS or it can be emailed to me at tom@tom-bradford.com
  • 3. All complaints will be acknowledged, preferably in writing, within 72 hours of receipt.
  • 4. You will also be advised when a full reply will follow, which should usually be within 28 days.
  • 5. If received by me, it should be handled and resolved where possible by me in the first instance. If it is unable to be satisfactorily resolved, then the matter must be advised to an independent staff member
  • In resolving each complaint, the matter will be reviewed to assess the need for:-
    • Appropriate redress: as a compensatory/goodwill measure for the client
    • Remedial Action: where the problem is not beyond correcting
    • Improvement Action: to look at the root cause of the problem and implement changes to prevent the problem from recurring.
  • So as to assist in my ability to investigate any complaint, I ask that complaints be made within 12 months of the incident from which the complaint arises. This is necessary because barristers do not retain the papers on a case, returning them to the instructing solicitor on completion of the case. Investigating complaints without the relevant files is a difficult process. If a complaint is being made outside of this timescale complainants are asked to explain why there has been such delay. I retain the right to refuse complaints that are more than 12 months old without any explanation for that delay.
  • The existence of this procedure does not prohibit me from turning aside unjustified complaints.
  • If a complainant is dissatisfied with the outcome of their complaint following investigation, or if their complaint has not been dealt within eight weeks, they have a right to refer the complaint to the Legal Ombudsman. The Ombudsman will only consider complaints that have already been referred to me and that have received an unsatisfactory response or outcome from me. The office of the Ombudsman can be contacted on 0300 555 0333 or you can write to: Legal Ombudsman, PO Box 6806, Wolverhampton WV1 9WJ. Visit www.legalombudsman.org.uk for further information. Clients who have a right to complain to the Legal Ombudsman are individuals, small businesses and charities. You can find the full list of who is available to complain to the Legal Ombudsman here. The Legal Ombudsman’s decision data can be found here. This shows providers which received an ombudsman’s decision in the previous 12 months.
  • If you have any questions about this process please feel free to email me at tom@tom-bradford.com

Privacy and data policies

  • Data Retention and Disposal Policy
    • In the course of carrying out various functions, Tom Bradford (“the Barrister”) creates and holds a wide range of recorded personal information. Records will be properly retained to enable him to meet his business needs, legal requirements, to evidence events or agreements in the event of allegations or disputes arising and to ensure that any records of historic value are preserved. The untimely destruction of records by the Barrister could affect:
      • the conduct of his business;
      • his ability to defend or instigate legal actions;
      • his ability to comply with statutory obligations;
      • his reputation.
    • Conversely, the permanent retention of records is undesirable and disposal is necessary to free up storage space, reduce administrative burden and to ensure that the Barrister does not unlawfully retain records for longer than necessary (particularly those containing personal information).
    • This policy supports the Barrister in demonstrating accountability through the proper retention of records and by demonstrating that disposal decisions are taken with proper authority and in accordance with due process.
    • Purpose
      • The purpose of this policy is to set out the length of time for which the Barrister’s records should be retained and the processes to review the records as to any further retention or for disposing of records at the end of the retention period. The policy helps to ensure that the Barrister operates in compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation and any other legislative or regulatory retention obligations.
    • Scope
      • The policy covers all types of records that the Barrister creates or holds. The records may include, but are not limited to, the following:
        • client files;
        • minutes of meetings;
        • submissions from external parties;
        • contracts and invoices;
        • registers;
        • legal advice;
        • file notes;
        • financial accounts;
        • employee information;
        • the Barrister’s publications.
      • The policy is applicable irrespective of the media on which such records are created or held. Such media may include:
      • paper;
      • electronic files (including electronic databases, Word documents, Power Point presentations, spreadsheets, webpages and emails); and
      • photographs, scanned images, CD-ROMs and video tapes.
    • Application
      • The policy applies equally to the Barrister and to any full-time or part-time employees on a substantive or fixed term contract and to associated persons who work for him.
    • Minimum Retention Period
    • Unless a record has been marked for ‘permanent preservation’ it should only be retained for a limited period of time. The currently recommended minimum retention period is 7 years from the date on which the instructions in relation to which the record is held are completed. This retention period applies to all records held. The recommended minimum retention period derives from either:
      • business need ie the running of the Barrister practice;
      • legislation;
      • the need to be able to respond to complaints;
      • the need to be able to take or defend legal action.
    • Disposal
    • What is Disposal
    • The Barrister is responsible for ensuring that the Register is periodically reviewed (at least annually) to determine whether any retention periods have expired. Once the retention period has expired, the record must be reviewed and a ‘disposal action’ agreed upon.
    • A ‘disposal action’ is:
      • physical and/or electronic destruction of the record; or
      • alternative disposal of the record e.g. returned to the instructing solicitor; or
      • retention of the record for a further period.
    • Making and Recording the Disposal Decision
      • A review of the record should take place as soon as possible after the expiry of the retention period or, if that is not feasible, the record should be retained and a later review date set. It need not be a detailed or time-consuming exercise but there must be a considered appraisal of the contents of the record. The review should be conducted by the Barrister. The disposal decision must be reached having regard to:
      • Decisions must not be made with the intent of denying access or destroying evidence.
      • Destruction
        • No destruction of a record should take place without assurance that:
        • Destruction of Paper Records
        • Destruction of Electronic Records
  • Privacy and Data Policy
    • I am committed to respecting your privacy and protecting your personal information
    • This privacy policy sets out how I use and protect any information that you give me.  This policy applies to all personal information that I collect, use and otherwise process in relation to your use of this website, your contact with me and the provision of legal advice and assistance to my clients and potential clients.
    • The policy applies whether this information is given or collected when you use this website, in subsequent communications with me, or through any other means.
    • I am committed to ensuring that your privacy is protected.  Should I ask you to provide or collect certain information by which you can be identified when using this website, you can be assured that it will only be used in accordance with this privacy policy.
    • Any personal information processed by me in connection with this Privacy Policy is controlled by me, so I am considered the legal “data controller” of your personal information. I am registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).
    • I may change this policy from time to time by updating this page. You should check this page from time to time to ensure that you are happy with any changes.
    • What is personal information?
      • Personal information means details which identify you or could be used to identify you, such as your name and contact details and your immigration history.  It may also include information about how you use this website and mobile applications, if the information is capable of identifying you.
    • How and when do I collect personal information?
      • I may collect information from you in the course of my business.  This includes information that is gathered automatically when you use my website or when you choose to send personal information to me when you contact me to enquire about my services or to see how I may help you.  This contact may be through the form on this website, by email or by telephone.
      • I collect information from you and others as part of my client acceptance process as necessary in the course of providing legal services to you.
      • I also collect personal information from you when you engage my legal services and during the course of delivering that legal service to you.
      • Or, I may gather information about you as a result of your relationship with one or more of my staff or clients.
    • What personal information do I collect and process about you?
      • When you view this website or associated social media, I may collect high level information about the pages that you have viewed and your country of origin.  I do not collect or retain information that is capable of identifying an individual simply from viewing my website or blog.
    • When you contact me, via my website, email or over the telephone, I may collect the following information:
      • Name and job title;
      • Contact information including email address and phone number;
      • Demographic information such as postcode;
      • Basic information about your employment, job title and your relationship to a person;
      • Basic information about your legal status or the nature of your legal issue;
      • Any other information or documentation that you choose to provide when you tell me about your legal issues using my web enquiry form.
    • When you engage my services I may collect and process additional information such as:
      • Further information and documentation relating to your identification and background checks, required as part of my client acceptance process;
      • Information you provide for the purpose of attending meetings with me, such as your travel needs;
      • Financial information relating to payment of fees;
      • Personal information provided by or on behalf of you (as a client) or generated in the course of providing my legal services to you.  This may include special categories of data;
      • Any other information relating to you which you may choose to provide to me.
      • Sometimes, assisting a client will also involve the client providing personal information to me about another individual.  This personal information will also be received, retained, processed, stored and destroyed in accordance with this policy. I will only hold such indirectly received personal information and documentation relating to individuals other than my clients insofar as it is lawful and reasonably necessary to do so and in order to provide the legal service contracted for with my client.
    • What is the legal basis for retaining, using or in any way processing your information?
    • I use your personal information on the following legal bases:
      • To perform a contract, such as assisting you (or my clients) with your legal matter when you instruct me or engage my services;
      • To comply with legal and regulatory obligations;
      • For legitimate business purposes.
    • What I do with your personal information?
      • I collect and process information about you in a number of ways.
      • I use the high level data about visits to my website to help improve the website and make it more appealing and useful to my clients.
      • When you send us an enquiry and provide personal information, I use this to assist you as a potential client.  I require this information to understand your needs and provide you with a better service.
      • When you engage my services as a client, I collect, create, process, store and use personal information in the course of and in connection with the services that I provide to you.  I will process background information and identification information in order to comply with my anti-money laundering and compliance checks. I will also process personal information for the purpose of the work that I do for you.
    • In summary, I use personal information :
      • To improve my services, including this website;
      • To provide information requested by you;
      • To manage and administer my relationship with you and my clients;
      • To provide legal services to you and to my clients;
      • For the purpose of internal record keeping and to fulfil my legal, regulatory and risk management obligations, including establishing exercising or defending legal claims.
    • I may periodically send you updates or newsletters about developments in  law or other information about us and my services which I think you may find interesting using the email address which you have provided (you may unsubscribe at any time);
    • From time to time, I may also use your information to contact you for market research purposes or to request a reference.  I may contact you by email, phone or mail. I may use the information to customise the website according to your interests.
    • Cookies
      • A cookie is a small file which asks permission to be placed on your computer’s hard drive. Once you agree, the file is added and the cookie helps analyse web traffic or lets you know when you visit a particular site. Cookies allow web applications to respond to you as an individual. The web application can tailor its operations to your needs, likes and dislikes by gathering and remembering information about your preferences.
      • I use traffic log cookies to identify which pages are being used. In particular, portions of this website use Google Analytics, a web analytics service provided by Google, Inc. (“Google”). Google Analytics uses cookies to help the website analyse how users use the site. The information generated by the cookie about your use of the website will be transmitted to and stored by Google on servers in the United States. Google will use this information for the purpose of evaluating your use of the website, compiling reports on website activity for website operators and providing other services relating to website activity and internet usage. This helps us analyse data about webpage traffic and improve my website in order to tailor it to client needs. I only use this information for statistical analysis purposes and then the data is removed from the system. Google may also transfer this information to third parties where required to do so by law, or where such third parties process the information on Google’s behalf. Google will not associate your IP address with any other data held by Google. You may refuse the use of cookies by selecting the appropriate settings on your browser, however please note that if you do this you may not be able to use the full functionality of this website. By using this website, you consent to the processing of data about you by Google in the manner and for the purposes set out above.
      • Overall, cookies help me provide you with a better website, by enabling us to monitor which pages you find useful and which you do not. A cookie in no way gives me access to your computer or any information about you, other than the data you choose to share with me.
      • You can choose to accept or decline cookies. Most web browsers automatically accept cookies, but you may modify your browser setting to decline cookies if you prefer. This may, however, prevent you from taking full advantage of the website.
    • Links to other websites
      • My website may contain links to other websites of interest. However, once you have used these links to leave my site, you should note that I do not have any control over that other website. Therefore, I cannot be responsible for the protection and privacy of any information which you provide whilst visiting such sites and such sites are not governed by this privacy policy. You should exercise caution and look at the appropriate privacy policy applicable to the relevant website being used.
    • Disclosing your personal information
      • In connection with work that I am undertaking for you, it may be necessary to disclose your personal information to third parties, such as.  I will not do this unless I have your permission or are required by law to do so.
      • Where necessary, personal information may (or may be required to) also be shared with regulatory authorities, courts, tribunals, government and law enforcement agencies.  I will make reasonable efforts to notify you of such disclosures, unless the law prevents me from telling you.
      • I may also share some of your personal information with trusted third parties with whom I have service contracts in place to assist us to deliver my service to you.  This may include my professional advisers, solicitors, accountants and auditors, IT service providers and suppliers of cloud based IT infrastructure detailed below. A full list of the providers with whom I may share your personal information in order to run my business is maintained, reviewed and updated regularly.  This list is available to clients upon request.
      • I will never sell, lease or hire any of your personal information to any third party for marketing or any other purpose.
    • Keeping your personal information safe
      • I am committed to ensuring that your information is secure, and use a variety of IT and physical measures to achieve this.  In order to provide an efficient and modern service to you, I use a selection of carefully picked cloud based service providers.  These include Google Drive, Kinsta, Whatsapp and Calendly. I take great care to ensure that all of the providers with whom I share information and the platforms that I use comply with the highest levels of internet and online security.  I have reviewed and approved their data security and privacy policies and they have provisions in place to safeguard your data.
      • Some of these service providers are hosted overseas and so using some of the platforms may involve transferring your personal data to locations from within to outside of the European Economic Area (“EEA”) and back again.  The level of protection offered in some countries outside of the EEA may be less than that within the EEA. For this reason, I subject the security and data policies of overseas service providers to the highest levels of scrutiny.  Where my service providers process your personal data outside of the EEA in the course of providing services to us, their measures contains appropriate measures that provide an appropriate level of data security.
      • Further, I have taken reasonable steps to protect your information against unauthorised access and against unlawful processing, accidental loss, damage and destruction.
      • However, any personal data submitted by you via my website or email is at your own risk.
    • How long will I keep your personal information?
      • Your personal information will be kept and stored safely and in accordance with my data retention policy.  This policy sets out my retention period and destruction dates in relation to the various categories of data and personal information that I hold.
      • I will only retain personal information for the purpose for which it was collected and used and for as long as is reasonably necessary.
      • I will set and adhere to destruction dates that are proportionate and reasonable, taking into account my legal, regulatory and record keeping requirements to retain material for a minimum retention period, limitation periods for taking legal action, good practice and my business purposes.
    • What can you do to help?
      • I take great care to keep your information safe.  Here are some of the things you can do to keep your information secure as well :
        • If you are contacting me via email, ensure that the devices that you use are pin-locked and securely encrypted;
        • Ensure that you have a good level of encryption and virus protection on your computers, ipads, phones and any other electronic devices
    • Keep any log-in details confidential
      • Be vigilant and alert in relation to unsolicited emails that ask you to confirm any passwords or bank details or ask you to send money to a third party.  These are likely to be fraudulent ‘phishing’ emails which is the illegal gathering of personal information by deception.
    • Access to your information and your rights
      • The GDPR provides certain rights for data subjects. You are entitled to request details of personal information which I hold about you.  Please note, if you are requesting personal information held about you that has been provided to me by one of my clients in connection with their legal matter, it is unlikely that I will be permitted by law to provide this to you.  Such material would be covered by legal professional privilege. You have the right to request that personal information that I hold about you is rectified.  If you believe that any information that I hold about you is incorrect, please contact me straight away to put this right. You have the right to request that I delete the personal information that I hold about you.  This is often referred to as the right to be forgotten. This will be subject to any regulatory or legal requirements that I may have to retain a copy of your personal data for a specified period. I have the right to restrict my processing of your personal information, to stop unauthorised transfers to a third party and (in some circumstances) the right to have personal information that I hold transferred to another organisation.  If you object to the processing of your personal information, or if you have provided your consent to processing and you later choose to withdraw it, I will respect that choice in accordance with my legal obligations. Please note, that your objection or withdrawal of consent could mean that I am unable to continue to provide my services to you.  Further, even after you have withdrawn consent, I may still be permitted or required to process your personal information in connection with my legal and/or regulatory obligations and in connection with exercising and defending my legal rights. If you would like to exercise any of the above rights, please email me at tom@tom-bradford.com  I will respond to all requests for personal information to be provided, rectified, deleted, processing restricted or the data transferred within 14 days of receiving the written request by email.  If I am unable to comply with a request within 14 days, I will explain that to you and the reasons why, and tell you how long I need to comply with your request. You also have the right to lodge a complaint in relation to my processing of your personal information with the Information Commissioner’s Office.  More information and contact details are available on the UK Government website at https://www.gov.uk/data-protection/make-a-complaint I must ensure that your personal information is accurate and up to date.  Please advise me of any changes to your information by email at tom@tom-bradford.com If you have any queries in relation to the above please do not hesitate to contact me at this email address.
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