Courts rule against data access requests

first_img Previous Article Next Article Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos. Courts rule against data access requestsOn 1 Jun 2003 in Vexatious claims, Personnel Today Employers may be encour-aged to refuse unreasonable or vexatious data accessrequests following two recent rulings. These show that where the employer resists unreasonable demands, the courtsmay be willing to overlook the strict letter of the law. In P v Wozencraft, 2002, EWHC 1724 (Fam) the claim-ant requestedrectification under section 14 and access under section 7 of the DataProtection Act 1998. However, the court agreed that all the documents hadalready been disclosed, making the claim “virtually redundant”. “This shows data controllers can question the InformationCommissioner’s assessments where they appear to be at odds with case law orcommon sense,” said Marcus Turle, partner at Field Fisher Waterhouse. The courts have also shown themselves willing to rule against accessrequests which do not reflect the spirit of section 7, which enablesindividuals to determine the accuracy of data. If the request is for any otherreason, the data controller can lawfully refuse. In Durant v Financial Services Authority (FSA), the judge said even if thepapers in question had been disclosable by law, he would not have ordereddisclosure as he did not see how they could be of practical value to Durant. “This should help cut down on litigants merely looking to causedisruption and encourage employers to resist frivolous or vexatiousrequests,” said Turle. last_img read more