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Solicitor given ex new address

(20 Posts)
SparkleUK Thu 09-Jan-20 19:59:21

Hi all,

Selling a jointly owned home with ex and using same solicitor for the sale and purchase of a new home with my partner. Ex doesn't live in this house and I instructed the solicitors so they've just been dealing with me, not my ex.

When I first instructed them, they sent me a big pack of standard paperwork in one envelope. One set relating to this house e.g our details, what fixtures are included in house, title deed number, usual bits.
The other set was for myself and new partner for purchase of a new home. I've met ex once in public to get these initial papers signed and knew I'd probably have to again once the contract comes through.

I made it explicitly clear on these initial forms and through direct email to the solicitor that my ex doesn't live here and under no circumstances was he to find out or be given my new address due to things that have happened during separation so I have genuine worry him knowing my address would incur further problems.

Just before Christmas break, solicitor emailed me and told me she'd sent out contracts paperwork to me but this never arrived. Today, I received an email from the solicitor asking if I'd received the paperwork. I also received a message from my ex informing me that he'd received all of the paperwork for the house but this included a set of paperwork for my onward purchase so he now knows which estate and house number I'll be moving to.

Fairly annoyed it has been sent to him as I did the instructing and have been dealing with the matter but it's jointly his house so that bit isn't too bothersome, he would have to see to sign. What I am worried about is that he now knows my address when it was repeatedly stated he wasn't to and what information a purchase contract holds as to what personal information of my partner may be on there too that he has party to now and anything I can do?

Hope someone has some thoughts

OP’s posts: |
Raindancer411 Thu 09-Jan-20 20:01:21

What address did you give for all correspondence to go to?

SparkleUK Thu 09-Jan-20 20:02:35

It was for the jointly owned address. He lives with his mum and her partner who was sending me threatening messages not so long back

OP’s posts: |
Soontobe60 Thu 09-Jan-20 20:10:46

I’m assuming the solicitor had your ex’s address?

SparkleUK Thu 09-Jan-20 20:15:05

@soontobe60 Yes, one of the fields on the initial forms asked for our addresses so he put on his mum's.

I repeatedly stated paperwork was to come here so I could deal with it and for him not to know my new address (only way it would get dealt with!)

Do you think it's a case of someone doing what they 'thought' instead? Just can't comprehend why my purchase information would have anything to do with him to be sent to him, nor why things would come here and suddenly not

OP’s posts: |
Sleepyhead19 Thu 09-Jan-20 20:18:34

I’d be making a serious complaint. They have sent on your data, not only without your permission but when you have expressed concern about this happening. That is now illegal. Only a terrible solicitor would 1: send to the wrong address and 2: pass on your data.

Milkcomesfromcows Thu 09-Jan-20 20:23:32

Complain to the solicitor as its a data protection breach.

They should give you an explanation of why they failed to follow your instructions.

The legal ombudsman can look at the complaint if they don't resolve it in a eight weeks.

Also, those are two separate agreements that you have entered into with the solicitor, one for each sale so the paperwork for your new house should definitely not have been sent out to your ex as it was a separate legal transaction.

SparkleUK Thu 09-Jan-20 20:32:23

Thanks all, I did hope it wasn't just me being an angry, heavily pregnant lady!

Obviously there isn't anything to stop him telling anyone else where I live now either which is just great and didn't know if purchase contract had any important other info on as my partner is providing a fair bit of deposit

OP’s posts: |
SparkleUK Sat 11-Jan-20 14:42:43

Just an update - I asked the lady I'd been dealing with for some accountability and how concerned I was.
She completely ignored the issue, said he'd need to be contacted about the house sale (this was never my issue, more so that someone has given him my new address), stated she'd never been told not to (despite me being able to quote the exact form I wrote it on plus at least two emails I've got) and then, in my view, very unprofessionally said they deal with conveyancing and not matrimonial advice - again, not something I ever asked for, just simply for them not to mix the two transactions for my own reasons!
Letter prepared to go to the firm of solicitors themselves. If that doesn't work, who is better to proceed with, legal ombudsman?

OP’s posts: |
Yesyesitsme Sat 11-Jan-20 14:48:57

I'd report it to the ICO.

MayDayFightsBack Sat 11-Jan-20 14:49:22

Tell her you are going to report her to the SRA (not the legal ombudsman, that’s for issues with bills) and the ICO for the data breach. This is a very serious matter.

Berthatydfil Sat 11-Jan-20 14:53:46

This is a data breach. They should have self reported to ICO with 72 hours of you advising her of what she had done. I’m assuming she either doesn’t know about her responsibilities under GDPR or she’s trying to fob you off in the hope you don’t realise the seriousness of what she has done.
Report to ICO yourself ASAP.
You have an expectation your personal information is your new home is kept secure and there is no reason to share this with your ex. This is before you consider that he is an ex for a reason and you seem to have concerns about his behaviour which is all the more reason to keep this information from him.

HugoSpritz Sat 11-Jan-20 15:01:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Sleepyhead19 Sat 11-Jan-20 16:08:18

She absolutely should’ve been more concerned about your complaint! What if the concern was about your safety and that’s why he wasn’t allowed to know where you live? You need to take this further!

AnchorDownDeepBreath Sat 11-Jan-20 16:13:01

You can report to the ICO, but to be honest, I wouldn't expect much. Barclays sent a letter regarding a fraudulent account that my abusive ex had opened in my name to his address, including my new address and phone number - and in that letter, stated they were aware of the situation and wouldn't disclose anything to him angry. They apologised eventually but didn't really care, I had to move into hotels for a few weeks as my ex kept turning up.

I complained to the ICO who took eight months to investigate and then said it was a serious breach but they'd be taking no further action against Barclays as it had been human error, and there was no evidence that this has been a widespread breach rather than a one off.

TildaKauskumholm Sat 11-Jan-20 16:23:05

Yes, do report but don't expect much. I did similar and every single one of the things in my complaint was eventually dismissed as an 'error'. It was what I'd expected though, as it's solicitors covering other solicitors' arses.

eurochick Sat 11-Jan-20 16:31:27

As mentioned above your engagement letter with them should set out the complaints procedure.

This is a data breach and they will have to deal with it.

Milkcomesfromcows Sat 11-Jan-20 18:13:07


This is wrong. The legal ombudsman do not just deal with bills. This is completely wrong. They can investigate all client service issues as long as they fall in time. They don't even really deal with costs ( for that you would need a costs draftsman), just whether you were fully informed and agreed to charges.

OP, they will deal with this complaint if it can't be resolved between you and the solicitor within eight weeks.

Send the letter recorded delivery and then the clock starts from the date they acknowledge it. If they don't acknowledge it in writing, the you have proof via way of the recorded delivery date.

The SRA only deal with conduct issues, i.e if the solicitor breaks their code of conduct by breaking the law or fraud. They don't deal with client service issues.

If there is crossover then the ombudsman will report the firm to the SRA on your behalf if they find that they have broken data protection and not followed GDPR.

Don't waste your time reporting it to the ico, they will only look that the 'data protection' aspect and not look at whether they followed your instructions- for that they will direct and signpost you back to the ombudsman....and you will have wasted weeks.

Ss770640 Sat 11-Jan-20 21:29:17

Solicitors are idiots tbh

Why the grievance? You can't hide your address forever if you share custody

SparkleUK Sat 11-Jan-20 22:11:26

Thanks all for the replies and advice, much appreciated.

@ss770640 I don't have children with him so he has no need to know my new address for my own reasons

OP’s posts: |

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