Your Privacy Rights
Beginning September 1, 2005, all businesses in Texas must comply with HB 1130 and SB 122 (79th Legislature 2005), regarding the privacy of personal information. These laws extend to lawyers and law firms, reinforcing the professional obligations we have always had.
How and why your personal information is collected
In connection with any legal matter, certain personal information must be obtained, such as: name, address, social security number, telephone number, driver’s license number, employment records, and medical records. Without this information, I would not be able to provide services to you.
My firm collects such personal information when you specifically and knowingly give it to us. My firm may also obtain information about you from other sources, for example:
- From your employers or previous employers, with your approval;
- From your medical providers, with an authorization signed by you;
- From a government agency or school, with your approval;
- From other parties or entities, through the discovery process.
- How personal information might be used -
Personal information, including your social security number, will be used to provide legal services to you and to communicate with you. In connection with providing legal services to you, my firm may obtain medical records and wage information, and may, under some circumstances, disclose this information to our consulting experts, other parties in your case, and/or file it with the Court, as the law and rules of procedure require. Information that is filed with any Court may become a matter of public record, and may be available to others as a result. This is something we cannot prevent.
My firm does not use the information you give us for any other internal purpose or secondary purpose, and we will never disclose your personal information other than as specifically required by your case, or otherwise with your consent.
Who your personal information may be shared with
My firm may disclose your personal information to health care providers, employers, the Internal Revenue Service, and/or Social Security Administration, in order to obtain evidence relevant to your claim.
My firm may also disclose your personal information to other parties in the case if requested to do so in the normal course of the discovery process, and only where such information is relevant to the claim.
My firm may disclose your personal information to others hired by us to work on your case, including consulting attorneys, expert witnesses, and other service providers. These persons or companies either have agreed or will agree to protect your personal information as well.
Please understand that some personal information must be filed with the Court in order to prosecute your claim. When it is filed with a court, or provided to other parties, insurance companies, etc., the information may become public record, and, in such a case, I am not able to ensure the continued privacy of that information.
How your personal information is secured
My firm will take all reasonable steps to ensure that your personal information is kept safe from loss, unauthorized access, modification or disclosure.
We take the following steps to protect your information:
- Premises security;
- Restricted file access to personal information;
- Technological safeguards like security software and firewalls to prevent unauthorized computer access;
- Internal password and security policies.
How your personal information is disposed
All work copies, drafts, and other temporary documents not retained as part of your file will be destroyed by shredding as soon as they are no longer needed.
At the conclusion of your case, your file will be stored in a secured storage facility for a period of at least five (5) years. At that time, if it is appropriate, my firm will destroy your file, including personal identifying information. You are always welcome to access or take possession of your file, because it belongs to you.
Communicating with us by email
If you communicate with us by email, you should be aware that it is not a 100%-secure method of communication. Please keep this in mind when emailing us sensitive or personal information.
How can I correct, amend or delete my personal information and/or opt out of future communications?
You may opt out of any future contacts from us at any time. Contact us via the phone number, contact form or mailing address on our website at any time to:
- see what data we have about you, if any;
- change/correct any data we have about you;
- ask us to delete any data we have about you; and/or
- opt out of future communications from us.
Questions about this policy, or our collection and use of personal information are welcome at any time.
If you fill out the “contact” form on this website, we will ask you to provide some personal information (such as e-mail address, name, phone number and state). We only require that you provide an e-mail address on the contact form. Further, if chat is available through this site, you may be asked to provide information if you participate in an online chat. Please do not submit any confidential, proprietary or sensitive personally identifiable information (e.g. Social Security Number; date of birth; driver’s license number; or credit card, bank account or other financial information) (collectively, “Sensitive Information”). If you submit any Sensitive Information, you do so at your own risk and we will not be liable to you or responsible for consequences of your submission.
Information that you provide to us through the contact form or an online chat will be used so that we may respond to your inquiry. We may also use information you provide to us to communicate with you in the future. If you do not wish to receive such communications, you may opt out (unsubscribe) as described below.
Web server logs
When you visit our website, we may track information about your visit and store that information in web server logs, which are records of the activities on our sites. The servers automatically capture and save the information electronically. Examples of the information we may collect include:
- your unique Internet protocol address;
- the name of your unique Internet service provider;
- the town/city, county/state and country from which you access our website;
- the kind of browser or computer you use;
- the number of links you click within the site;
- the date and time of your visit;
- the web page from which you arrived to our site;
- the pages you viewed on the site; and
- certain searches/queries that you conducted via our website(s).
The information we collect in web server logs helps us administer the site, analyze its usage, protect the website and its content from inappropriate use and improve the user’s experience.
We may use services hosted by third parties, including Adobe Site Catalyst, to assist in providing our services and to help us understand the use of our site by our visitors. These services may collect information sent by your browser as part of a web page request, including your IP address or cookies. If these third-party services collect information, they do so anonymously and in the aggregate to provide information helpful to us such as website trends, without identifying individual visitors.
California Do Not Track
Our web services do not alter, change, or respond upon receiving Do Not Track (DNT) requests or signals in browsers. As described in more detail above, we track user activity using web server logs, cookies and similar technologies. Information collected in web server logs helps us analyze website usage and improve the user’s experience. Cookies allow us to offer you a customized experience and present relevant advertising to you.