In the same way that fines can be far higher, will we also see higher GDPR compensation amounts since the new law came into effect in May 2018?
Although data breach compensation amounts are still based on the individual impact to the victim, and this hasn’t changed since GDPR, the new laws can make brining a claim an easier thing to do. The law is more stringent than the previous Data Protection Act, so there can be more avenues for people to be able to claim. And the recent court case victory has also paved the way for people to be able to launch a claim even if they haven’t suffered any distress or loss at all.
The difference in fines is, of course, monumental. We have already seen the power that regulators now have to ensure data breach offenders are properly punished.
How we assess GDPR compensation amounts
Data breach compensation pay-outs are designed to reflect any distress and financial losses that a victim has suffered. We assess GDPR compensation amounts based on things such as:
- The severity of any distress that a victim has suffered. In severe cases where the distress can lead to a psychological reaction, compensation awards can be high;
- Monetary losses which can cover things such as money that has been stolen from direct theft in cyberattacks, or money lost as a result of fraud that stemmed from your personal information being exposed;
- Other consequential losses, often referred to as Special Damages, which can include things like lost earnings from time off work that stems form the distress caused by a breach;
- Expenses, which could account for any treatment that’s needed in serious cases, or fraud protections services which can be quite common.
This can all go toward account for the overall damages amount that you can be entitled to receive. GDPR allows victims to be able to claim, but it’s important to know the difference between compensation and the new fine system as well.
Separation between GDPR fines and compensation
The money that can be received as part of a GDPR fine that’s issued by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) isn’t designed to be used for compensation. Victims of a breach who wish to claim compensation can instruct a law firm like us where we can represent you for a separate legal case on a No Win, No Fee basis.
The ICO reportedly issued fines in the sum of just £3m in the period leading up until April 2018; one month before GDPR was launched. However, they have issued an intent to fine just two companies a combined £282m since GDPR came into force. That’s a staggering 9,300% increase owing to the fact that GDPR allows far higher fines to now be issued.
But the higher fines don’t necessarily mean higher GDPR compensation amounts. The amount of compensation that you can receive, as explained above, is based on things like the severity of the impact to the victim. Data breach claim amounts are still usually assessed based on the impact to the victim. The severity of the breach in terms of what kind of information has been misused or exposed, and to whom, can also be considered.
Advice and representation from the experts
We’ve been fighting for justice in the niche area of data protection breach compensation law for several years – a lot longer than a number of the firms have who have only just started trying to assist with these often-complex cases.
Thousands of people have come to us for our help, and we’re actively involved in over 25 different data breach group and multi-party actions. These include actions as far back as the infamous TalkTalk breach of 2015, and the horrendous 56 Dean Street Clinic leak of the same year.
We’re also appointed to the Steering Committee that’s conducting the litigation in the BA Group Action, by order of the High Court of Justice.
This means that, when you speak to us, you’re speaking to the experts. And when you instruct us to represent you for a No Win, No Fee legal case, you have the experts on your side.
It’s important that any GDPR compensation amounts you can be entitled to receive are fair and reflect the maximum possible pay-out you could be entitled to receive. Our unique experience and specialism in this area of law means that we can ensure you receive just that.
And what’s more, our office is open until 10pm on most weeknights, and 9am to 5pm on most weekends. We want to be as accessible as we can for our clients.
For free, no-obligation advice, please don’t hesitate to contact our expert, friendly team today.
IMPORTANT: advice on this page is intended to be up-to-date for the 'first published date'.
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