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    • Many thanks for those helpful comments. I have done a revised draft - not sure that Point 2 re signage is expressed very well. Still looking for more ammo on POFA Section 4. Does this look a bit tidier?  DRAFT DEFENCE.docx
    • If you’ve handed in your notice : what help do you want / expect?. You’ve handed in your notice & not raised a grievance .... that is the wrong way around. Now you’d have to prove constructive dismissal, and (if you hand in your notice rather than pursue the grievance route first) that is a high bar to meet.   How long have you been employed there?
    • Thank you so much for heads up.
    • Thanks Bankfodder!   Hello again everyone.    I received my SAR back from Elderbridge and what and absolute load of **** it is!   1.  They did not send any transcripts or recordings of any phones calls  - both myself and my husband spoke to them in Aug 2016 (noted in their diary notes) and I called them in Dec 2018 (again noted in their diary notes) it was the same day they sent the reply even though they have mentioned me calling in their notes on that day, so not sure I should let that go or not!   I also spoke to them in July 2016 (again in the notes) and I spoke to them in Dec 2012 (again in the notes)    2.  Going through the diary notes in the beginning notes were sporadic mainly because we were making payment and everything was ok, then later as things changed there were notes almost once a month, then in NOV 2012 and Dec 2012 frequency of notes increase as this is when they began court proceedings.  and throughout 2013 again lots of notes made - mostly their in house stuff about court dealings and so on - so that's fine. then in NOV 2013 hey made a not re the court date in OCT - saying that they were ordered to treat the loan as having a fixed rate from inception and sent off etc.  BUT from 21 Nov 2013 to 17th June 2014 there are no notes at all!  Now the hearing was on the 10th Jan 2014!   17/06/2014 14:43 *****Substantial EVS costs to be added to any SF ****** 17/06/2014 14:43 EVS Defended + At the hearing on 10/01/2014 an SPO for 500 on 26/01/2014 and then CMI + £60 wef 26/02/2014 plus MJ for £103,331.03 suspended on the same terms. It was also held that we could add our costs - Defended costs on this case are £33,879.80. 17/06/2014 00:00 Reviewed Reviewed 17/06/2014 00:00 ***Defended Costs*****:To be added to any SF ***Defended Costs*****:To be added to any SF 21/11/2013 04:13 ADHOC Statement Printed From 03/10/13 To 13/11/13 Batch 2015 Sequence 28 Printed 13/11/2013 00:00:00   Above you can cleary see the gap then suddenly the first notes talk about the court case and costs etc, at the trial in OCT the judge reserved cost till the next hearing (also stated on the documentation from the court)  but then at that hearing in Jan 2014 we did not discuss costs - the 6 month gap I feel is very suspicious.    The final court document  dated 13th Jan 2014 says to pay the claimant £103,331.03 which is the amount outstanding under the mortgage and goes on to says order were not to be enforced as long as we pay etc.  no mention of costs at all - so they seem to just be adding them   3.   They sent a field agent to me in Jan 2018, I only knew this as on the 9th Jan 2018 I was working at home and heard the letterbox, thought it was the postman, went to the door to find an envelope shoved through the door with a letter in it saying they had been requested to visit me and that they called today but I was not in! and gave a number for me to call ( I saw the woman walking down the driveway - but she did not ring the bell! and I wasn't about to run after her!)   But in the notes they have written this utter lie!   30/01/2018 12:44 Field Agent Report Received The field agent visited the security address on three occasions. The customer was spoken to through the window. They refused to discuss and refused to answer the door. The contact number on file is not recognised. RFA - Not known Reasons for items not verified:N/A Details of variances of items outside of expenditure guidelines and reasons N/A Property is a detached house in good condation valued at £406,000. Equity not known. I actually cannot believe what I have read here! Can I ask them for some kind of proof of this, because I don't know who they are talking about but it certainly wasn't me!   4.  the documents they had sent me a joke, they have sent 77 documents in total, none of these are copies of letter from Elderbridge (which is who I sent the SAR to) all from First Plus and certainly not ALL of them, they have been bulked out by sending me copies of documents that I sent TO THEM for my court defence and there are strange Black boxes over some of the text!? which I don't understand!     After receiving this info from Elderbridge I decided to send a SAR to Barclays and I got a small package with a couple of letters, some diary notes and screen shot of the account, as well as a short statement of account. This was for our ORIGINAL loan from Feb 2006,  (we topped it up in June 2006) and the first one was closed.  The second one is the one that has been transferred to Elderbridge but Barclays seem to know be denying ALL knowledge of it! and I know that they still hold the beneficial interest of these loans and that Elderbridge regularly contact Barclays for help and advise - I have contact with other account holders who have diary notes from Elderbridge showing contact to Barclays!..   This week I also had a reply from the FOS (only from an adjudicator not an ombudsman) and his initial opion is that it's ok for Elderbridge to claim the costs as we defaulted, he seems to be ignoring my argument that the relationship is unfair etc but I will be sending this back and asking for it to be looked at by an ombudsman.   But was hoping that someone here could give me any advise re all of this - sorry I know it's a lot!!
    • why all the blanked out stuff in the parking contract? and no proof its paid this year either?  
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Recording Claimant Interviews

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This post may help to clarify the legal status of claimants who wish to, or choose to, record their interviews at Jobcentres or other locations where their concerns and personal circumstances are being discussed and may affect them personally.

 

Jasta11, posted on another thread a FOI Response dated Sept 2012 that included the following paragraph:

 

Under the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA), Section 36, there is an exemption which states that:-

 

personal data; are exempt from the Data Protection Principles and the provisions of Part II (individuals’ rights) and Part III (notification) of the Act where they are processed by an individual only for the purposes of that individual’s personal, family or household affairs (including recreational purposes).”

 

That paragraph still applies, it is quoted again in a DWP FOI Response dated Oct 2014 which can be checked at:

 

https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/130864/response/322027/attach/5/Recordings%20by%20claimants.pdf

 

I don't believe that there is any doubt about claimants being able to covertly record interviews with DWP advisers for their own personal purposes. In fact, this paragraph states clearly that anyone doing so is exempt from the Data Protection Act 1998. This means that the DPA 1998 can't be used to prosecute a claimant for recording an interview since s/he is exempt from it.

 

Recordings processed 'by an individual only for the purposes of that individual’s personal, family or household affairs' would cover sharing them with such as one's solicitor or legal adviser, personal advisers attached to a charity or Citizens Advice. other advisers and/or representatives. Could not social advice forums such as this one also fit into that category?

 

The other important part of the above quoted paragraph to consider is that in addition to an 'individual's personal, family or household purposes' the law makes provision to 'include' that recordings can be processed for 'recreational purposes'. This part of the clause doesn't get a mention in the DWP's guidance, wonder why not? What does 'recreational purposes' mean? Could it not mean what is now commonly termed the social media such as Facebook, Youtube, etc? Are they not recreational? What else but recreation attracts so many people these days to that type of social media?

In any event would it not still be regarded as the individual's personal affair to publish his/her individual interviews where and when s/he chooses?

 

We know from experience that any time we receive a letter from DWP telling us what they want us to do, or threatening the consequences of failing to do what they expect us to do, they always quote the law, chapter and verse. It will be noticed that the guidance on this topic does not mention a single law on which a claimant can be prosecuted for, not only recording interviews, but from doing what s/he likes to do with that recording.

 

Two actions are suggested for the DWP to take: 1. write to the claimant; 2. write to the Internet Service Provider (ISP).

 

They rule option 2 out themselves as being almost worse than useless. That leaves option 1.

 

Under option 1: We have already examined where the action of the claimant is exempt from any action under the Data Protection Act. DWP could only bring a prosecution under the Act if they could show that the claimant was a 'Data Controller'. From a quick perusal of the law this would appear laughable to suggest that the claimant is a 'Data Controller' on the internet. The ISP, I would suggest, is the data controller, and DWP are more or less conceding in their guidance that any appeal to them to control anything anyone might publish would be futile.

 

This is the relevant part of Section 1 of the Data Protection Act 1998 that defines a data controller:

 

“data controller” means, subject to subsection (4), a person who (either alone or jointly or in common with other persons) determines the purposes for which and the manner in which any personal data are, or are to be, processed;

 

Sub-section 4 says:

 

(4) Where personal data are processed only for purposes for which they are required by or under any enactment to be processed, the person on whom the obligation to process the data is imposed by or under that enactment is for the purposes of this Act the data controller.

 

As a last resort they attempt to scare people off by bringing the Information Commissioner who is Parliament’s independent regulator of the Data Protection Act into the mix. This is what they tell us the information commissioner has to say:

 

"It is a criminal offence for a data controller to process personal information if they have not registered this with the Information Commissioner."

 

Here again we have already shown that to suggest that a claimant is a potential data controller on the internet is laughable.

 

Anyway read for yourselves and I believe that you will reach the same conclusions that I have reached and that is that in this, as in so much else, DWP are relying on bluff, ignorance on the part of the claimant, intimidation and fear to continue to get their own way.

 

Finally, is it to be supposed for one minute that if there was a law to prevent covert recordings from being published that Mr. Jack Straw and Sir Malcolm Rifkind would not have exploited it to keep their careers from such an ignominious ending.

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Under the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA), Section 36, there is an exemption which states that:-

 

personal data; are exempt from the Data Protection Principles and the provisions of Part II (individuals’ rights) and Part III (notification) of the Act where they are processed by an individual only for the purposes of that individual’s personal, family or household affairs (including recreational purposes).”

 

The key phrase is "individual’s personal, family or household affairs" - Posting recordings on the internet on the pretext of seeking advice is most likely a step too far. Anonymised transcripts of the recordings would be unlikely to fall foul of any legislation.

 

Your main point that recording conversations, either openly or covertly, is something I've commented on in previous posts. Having read both the Data protection Act and the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act, I concur with your conclusion: There is no legislation to prevent a private individual from recording a conversation.

 

 

However.... If the condition of entry to an office excludes open or covert recording, then you could be asked to leave and be treated as a trespasser. But as this is (generally) a civil offence, there is precious little that anyone could do.

 

Could "security" at the Job Centre or W.P. office confiscate or delete the equipment/recording ?

No. To do so would be theft and/or criminal damage, and if the recording was evidence to a criminal act, add to the list, perverting the course of justice.


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Recordings processed 'by an individual only for the purposes of that individual’s personal, family or household affairs' would cover sharing them with such as one's solicitor or legal adviser, personal advisers attached to a charity or Citizens Advice. other advisers and/or representatives. Could not social advice forums such as this one also fit into that category?

 

I'll let others debate the general legalities regarding your post - suffice it to say that I agree that as a general rule, covertly recording an appointment for one's own personal use would appear to be just fine. That is the advice we generally give here. But in relation to what you've posted as quoted above, I would like to make one thing clear: CAG members must not post such recordings on this forum for any reason. This forum is open and accessible to the general public, and posting these recordings here is in no way analogous to allowing a CAB adviser or lawyer to listen to one as part of a private consultation.


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The key phrase is "individual’s personal, family or household affairs" - Posting recordings on the internet on the pretext of seeking advice is most likely a step too far. Anonymised transcripts of the recordings would be unlikely to fall foul of any legislation.

 

Your main point that recording conversations, either openly or covertly, is something I've commented on in previous posts. Having read both the Data protection Act and the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act, I concur with your conclusion: There is no legislation to prevent a private individual from recording a conversation.

 

 

However.... If the condition of entry to an office excludes open or covert recording, then you could be asked to leave and be treated as a trespasser. But as this is (generally) a civil offence, there is precious little that anyone could do.

 

Could "security" at the Job Centre or W.P. office confiscate or delete the equipment/recording ?

No. To do so would be theft and/or criminal damage, and if the recording was evidence to a criminal act, add to the list, perverting the course of justice.

With all due respect the key phrase is not "individual’s personal, family or household affairs", in fact, there is no such phrase, unless you cut the actual wording of the Act in such a way as to invalidate its meaning. The clause in the Act as you have interpreted it, and that you would regard as key, would not give any indication that this also means (including recreational purposes)?

Selective dissection of what the law actually says is the DWP's stock in trade and it is how they manage to persuade people that the law says something it does not say, thereby making such as claimants conform and succumb to bullying tactics.

What law could be used against a claimant to bar him/her from a Jobcentre for open or covert recording when the Act that governs data protection clearly states that it does not apply to such as claimants processing personal data?

Your contention that it may be permissible to post transcripts of recordings anonymously does not give the full picture either. Since this is also 'processing' it must be treated in the same way as any other form of 'processing'

The Act defines 'processing' as:

“processing”, in relation to information or data, means obtaining, recording or holding the information or data or carrying out any operation or set of operations on the information or data, including—

(a) organisation, adaptation or alteration of the information or data,

(b) retrieval, consultation or use of the information or data,

© disclosure of the information or data by transmission, dissemination or otherwise making available, or

(d) alignment, combination, blocking, erasure or destruction of the information or data;

So, to cut a long story short, what that means is that I would be in no more danger of falling foul of the Data Protection Act by posting any recordings I choose on the internet than I would be for writing down in my own words what transpired at interviews, or even giving a word for word account, as many of us have done before now without censure or repercussions from any quarter.

I am at a loss to understand how you can state, or what law states, that exercising a right I have under the Data Protection Act can be a civil offence.

All this begs the questions: By what law can a contributor on a discussion or advice forum 'process' personal data, regarding such as adviser interviews, in written form and not in audio form on the same proviso, that personal identifiers be redacted? And by what law does said forums accept and allow it in one form and not in the other?

Antone reminds us of CAG policy and I appreciate and accept that CAG, in conjunction with other forums have rules and regulations governing what can and can't be 'processed' or published by them. It might be interesting and informative to know by what law, if any, other than 'in house' rules, they are controlled or restricted.

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However.... If the condition of entry to an office excludes open or covert recording, then you could be asked to leave and be treated as a trespasser. But as this is (generally) a civil offence, there is precious little that anyone could do.

 

 

Surely if it's covert, they aren't going to be aware or it won't be covert.

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