Privacy Policy

1. Privacy
Consensus (we) is committed to championing the principles of, and compliance with, the Privacy Act 1993 (NZ) (Act). This policy sets out how we will collect, use, disclose and protect your personal information as defined in the Act (Personal Information) and does not limit your rights under the Act. Subject to the other Consensus Terms & Conditions and the Evidence Act 2006 (NZ), information communicated between clients and lawyers via Consensus will also be subject to privilege.
2. Personal Information
We collect Personal Information from you, including (without limitation):
2.1. your name;
2.2. your contact information;
2.3. your location;
2.4. information about your use of legal services (such as the kinds of jobs you list on Consensus and the fees agreed);
2.5. information about your interactions with Consensus;
2.6. information about your interactions with other users of Consensus; and
2.7. billing or purchase information.
3. Collection and Use
We collect and use your Personal Information in order to:
3.1. allow you to maintain your user profile and to interact with Consensus;
3.2. allow lawyers and clients to interact;
3.3. allow lawyers to be engaged by clients;
3.4. make you aware of our services and activities and market them to you via electronic or other means;
3.5. let you know about how to access other content we may make available to you;
3.6. record general information about how legal services in New Zealand are procured and provided and to analyse this (on an aggregated, anonymised basis);
3.7. verify your identity, including allowing lawyers to verify client’s identities to ensure their compliance with their obligations at New Zealand law (if required), and (if necessary) to perform a credit check;
3.8. adjust or improve our services and activities;
3.9. invoice you and collect any money that you may owe us, including authorising and processing credit card transactions;
3.10. protect our interests and/or enforce our rights, including (without limitation) to prosecute and defend a court, arbitration, or similar legal proceeding; and
3.11. transfer your Personal Information in the case of a sale, merger, consolidation, liquidation, reorganisation, or acquisition of Consensus. In that event, any acquirer will be subject to our obligations under this policy, including your rights to access your Personal Information,
and for any other purpose authorised by you or the Act.
4. How We Collect Personal Information
We collect Personal Information about you when you provide it to us, including via the Consensus website and any related service, through any registration or subscription process, through any contact with us or when you buy or use our services. We may also collect Personal Information about you from third parties where you have authorised this or the information is publicly available.
5. Disclosure
We may share your Personal Information with:
5.1. a related company (as that term is defined in the Companies Act 1993 (NZ)) of Consensus New Zealand Limited;
5.2. the New Zealand Law Society;
5.3. with clients or lawyers registered with Consensus as requested by you via Consensus;
5.4. any business or organisation that supports or helps to promote or provide our services, including (without limitation) any person that hosts or maintains any underlying information technology system or data centre that we use to provide the Consensus website or other services and products (Service Providers). Such Service Providers may be located outside New Zealand, meaning your Personal Information may be held and processed outside New Zealand. Where possible, Service Providers enter into contracts with us that protect Personal Information and restrict their use of Personal Information consistent with this policy;
5.5. a credit reference agency for the purpose of performing a credit check in relation to you (if required);
5.6. third parties for the purposes of undertaking aggregated, anonymised analysis or reporting;
5.7. a person or organisation who can require us to disclose your Personal Information, such as a regulatory authority;
5.8. any other person authorised by you, the Act or any other law, such as a law enforcement agency (including in accordance with the Lawyers and Conveyancers Act (Lawyers: Conduct and Client Care) Rules 2008); and
5.9. our representatives and advisors, including (without limitation) our lawyers and accountants, to assist us to comply with legal, accounting or security requirements.
6. Provision of Personal Information
Providing some Personal Information is optional. However, if you choose not to provide us with such Personal Information, we may be unable to provide services to you (whether you are registered as a client or a lawyer).
7. Combining Personal Information with Other Information
We may combine Personal Information with other information we collect or obtain about you, such as information we source from third parties, to serve you specifically (for example, to deliver a service according to your preferences or restrictions, or for advertising or targeting purposes in accordance with this policy). When we combine Personal Information with other information in this way, we treat it as, and apply all of the safeguards in this policy applicable to, Personal Information.
8. Security
We create and maintain a secure environment for the collection and protection of your Personal Information. We use reasonable security safeguards to protect Personal Information from loss, unauthorised access, use or disclosure, and we only allow certain staff access to your Personal Information. Notwithstanding this, the provision of Personal Information over the internet is at your own risk. If you post your Personal Information on Consensus and communicate with other users via Consensus’ website or other software, you acknowledge and agree that the information you post is available to users entitled to access it as stated on the website. Similarly, if you follow a link on our website to another site, the owner of that site will have its own policy relating to your Personal Information, and we suggest you review that site’s policy before you provide any information. We use cookies (an alphanumeric identifier that we transfer to your computer’s hard drive so that we can recognise your browser) to monitor your use of Consensus. You may disable cookies by changing the settings on your browser, although this may mean that you cannot use all of the features of the website.
9. Retention and Destruction
We keep your Personal Information for seven years after you have cancelled your registration with Consensus, at which point we securely destroy it by erasing all digital data stored.
9. Access and Corrections
Subject to certain grounds for refusal set out in the Act, you have the right to request a copy of the readily retrievable Personal Information we hold about you, and to ask for it to be corrected if you think it is wrong. If you would like to ask for a copy of your Personal Information, or to have it corrected, please email us at privacy@consensus.nz and provide evidence of who you are and set out the details of your request (for example, the Personal Information, or the correction, you are requesting). Before we provide you with a copy, we will need evidence you are the individual to whom the Personal Information relates, and in respect of a request for correction, if we think the correction is reasonable and we are reasonably able to change the Personal Information, we will change it. If we do not make the correction, we will take reasonable steps to note on the Personal Information that you requested the correction. We may charge you our reasonable costs of providing to you copies of your Personal Information or correcting that Personal Information.
10. Changes
We may change this policy by uploading a revised policy onto our website. The updated version will apply from the date we upload it. We will notify you when this happens.