How To Make A Lost Records Data Breach Compensation Claim

Have you been asking the question: how do I make a lost records data breach compensation claim? If so, this guide will help you to understand the conditions being eligible to make a claim and how much compensation you could receive.  

lost records data breach compensation claim

Lost records data breach compensation claim guide

It is important to know the two pieces of legislation governing data protection, the UK General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) and the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA). These exist alongside each other to provide a framework for the use of personal information, covering both physical and digital data. The UK GDPR also provides you, the data subject, with the right to seek compensation for a personal data breach that caused you financial loss or psychological harm. We will explore your eligibility to claim in more detail throughout this guide.

Furthermore, we will explore the different causes of personal data breaches involving lost records, such as human error and cyber security incidents.

Moreover, this guide will provide information on the benefits of hiring legal representation under a No Win No Fee agreement.     

Read on to find out more. Alternatively, you can contact our advisors to make any enquiries, they are available 24/7, so you can contact them at any time at your convenience:   

  • Call 0161 696 9685
  • Fill out the contact form on our page
  • Use our live chat service at the bottom of this page

Select A Section

  1. What Is A Lost Records Data Breach Compensation Claim?
  2. Types Of Records Which Could Be Lost
  3. Are You Owed Compensation?
  4. How To Start A Lost Records Data Breach Compensation Claim?
  5. What Lost Records Data Breach Compensation Could You Claim?
  6. Talk To Our Team

What Is A Lost Records Data Breach Compensation Claim?

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is an independent UK body responsible for upholding information rights. It is crucial to note that they do not award compensation for damages. However, they can issue organisations a monetary penalty for not adhering to data protection law. The ICO provides key definitions for understanding a data breach:  

  • Data controller – The person responsible for making the decisions concerning the purposes of processing your personal data. They can also process this data themselves.
  • Data processor – The person who processes your personal data. They do this on behalf of the relevant controller. 
  • Data breach – This is a security incident leading to the loss, destruction or alteration of your personal data in an accidental or unlawful way. It also includes your personal data being disclosed or accessed without authorisation. 
  • Personal data – This is any information that can be used to identify you, such as your name, phone number, email address, postal address or credit card details.

The data controller and processor must adhere to data protection law by taking reasonable steps to protect your personal data. As such, if their failings cause your personal data to become compromised and you suffer financial loss or mental harm, you may be able to claim. 

Please don’t hesitate to contact our team of advisors to find out more about data breach claims. You can also head here to learn how to make a data breach claim for lost files

Types Of Records Which Could Be Lost

Below is a list of records which could be lost:

  • Medical records 
  • Criminal records
  • Employment records 
  • Disciplinary records
  • Tax records

Data in these records could identify you. If this information is breached due to an organisations failings and causes you to suffer damages, you could persue a lost records data breach compensation claim.  

We have explored examples of how these records could be lost in the following sections.

Medical Records

Medical records can contain personal data that is classed as more sensitive meaning it needs more protection. This is known as special category data and can include information relating to your ethnicity, health, genetics.

Authorised healthcare professionals can access your medical records. However, in some cases, they could be lost.

For example, a doctor takes a patient’s records to a cafe to do some preparatory reading for a later appointment. When leaving the cafe, he forgets the medical records. This patient’s data could be accessed and used by anyone who finds it. This human error is a breach of the UK GDPR, as physical data records should be securely stored.     

Criminal Records

Personal data that relates to criminal convictions and offences or other related security measures requires more protection. It is known as criminal offence data and can include information such as:

  • Criminal activity
  • Allegations
  • Investigations
  • Proceedings

However, in some cases, an organisation might fail to take steps to protect records containing criminal offence data.

For example, an employer may have carried out a check that gave them information from your criminal records. They may have left this information open on their laptop in the shared staff kitchen. As a result, another employee may have stolen these records. 

Employment And Disciplinary Records

Employers keep records of staff containing various personal information, such as your name, number, home address and bank details. However, they may fail to uphold their responsibilities as per data protection law.

For example, an office has employee files containing contracts, banking information, and any disciplinaries employees have received. When moving offices, these records are misplaced or lost, resulting in a data breach that causes identity theft. 

Are You Owed Compensation?

To make a lost records data breach compensation claim, you need to be able to prove that:

  • An organisation’s failings caused your personal data to become compromised
  • You experienced damage to your finances and/or mental suffering.

The psychological impact of a breach could include stress, anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder in more severe cases.

The financial impact could include a bad credit score, loans being taken out in your name and lost earnings due to time off work.

If you’re eligible, you could receive compensation for the ways in which the personal data breach has impacted your day to day life. Call us for more information.

How To Start A Lost Records Data Breach Compensation Claim?

The ICO must be notified within 72 hours when an organisation discovers a data breach that risks people’s rights and freedom. The organisation should, without delay, also inform the data subjects at risk. 

There are also steps you can take following a lost records data breach. Firstly, the ICO recommends raising a complaint with an organisation when you are made aware of a breach or suspect a breach has happened. You can tell them what has happened and how you have been affected. 

If you do not get a reply or the response is unsatisfactory, you can make a complaint to the ICO, who may investigate the breach. You can use the outcome of this investigation as evidence as well as any communication you have had with the organisation.

Lastly, you could seek legal advice to help you claim compensation for any damages. You can contact our team to discuss starting your potential lost records data breach compensation claim today.

What Could A Lost Records Data Breach Compensation Claim Include?

The two forms of damages that you can claim for following a data breach are:

  • Material damages – This is the head of claim covering financial losses caused by the personal data breach. Someone could use your personal information to steal your identity and take out loans in your name.
  • Non-material damages – This covers the psychological harm caused by the personal data breach, such as anxiety, depression, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and stress due to the data breach

Before the Vidal-Hall and others v Google Inc [2015] case, you could not claim for non-material damages if there were no material damages. However, this case changed the position of the law regarding data protection compensation. You can now claim for psychological harm even in cases where there are no financial losses.

As a guide for valuing non-material damages solicitors refer to the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG), published in April 2022. They use this text to help value general damage settlements for personal injury claims such as road traffic accidents, work accidents and medical negligence. It contains compensation brackets that correspond to different injuries. 

The table below contains guideline figures from the JCG, however, you should only use them as a guide because your actual settlement may vary.

Injury Details Compensation Amount Brackets
Severe Psychological Injury (a) Severe problems coping with daily life and a very poor prognosis. £54,830 to £115,730
Moderately Severe Psychological Injury (b) Significant problems coping with daily life but with a more optimistic prognosis. £19,070 to £54,830
Moderate Psychological Injury (c) Previous problems coping with daily life which have significantly improved, and the prognosis is good. £5,860 to £19,070
Less Severe Psychological Injury (d) The amount awarded takes into account how long and to what extent the person’s life was affected. £1,540 to £5,860
Severe PTSD (a) Permanent effects on all parts of the person’s life. £59,860 to £100,670
Moderately Severe PTSD (b) Similar to the above, however there is a better prognosis with professional help. £23,150 to £59,860
Moderate PTSD (c) The person will have largely recovered. £8,180 to £23,150
Less Severe PTSD (d) The person will make a mostly full recovery within 1-2 years. £3,950 to £8,180

Tell our advisors the details of your case for a more accurate valuation of your lost records data breach compensation claim.

Talk To Our Team

When making a lost records data breach compensation claim, you do not have to have legal representation. However, it can benefit you to have an experienced solicitor representing your claim.

A No Win No Fee arrangement such as a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA), can allow you to fund legal representation whilst avoiding large upfront or ongoing fees for a solicitor’s services. You also do not pay for your solicitor’s services if the claim is unsuccessful. 

On the other hand, if your claim is a success, you will pay a small legally capped success fee from the awarded compensation. 

Contact our helpful team of advisors to discuss your potential claim and find out whether a solicitor from our panel could represent your case on a No Win No Fee basis.

To get in touch, you can:

  • Call 0161 696 9685
  • Fill out the contact form on our page
  • Use our live chat service at the bottom of this page

Related Guides On A Lost Records Data Breach Compensation Claim

Useful links to find out more:

Further helpful external links:

Thank you for reading our lost records data breach compensation claim guide. We hope you found all the information you needed to seek compensation for the damages you have suffered.

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