Publication Policy

This page sets out our Publication Policy as agreed by the Council in 2014.

OPENNESS PRINCIPLES

  1. The CLC is committed to making freely available as much information about its work as possible to assist:
  • the regulated community
  • the oversight regulator
  • our partners in regulatory activity and law enforcement
  • policy makers
  • consumers of legal services
  1. Unless otherwise stated, information will be published on the CLC’s website. Where information is not published because it is not proportionate to do so, it will still be available on request.
  2. This commitment covers all of the CLC’s work as a developer of policy in relation to legal services and an educator of lawyers as well as our purely regulatory work.
  3. Some of our regulatory decisions are published on our website. We may also make disclosures about the regulated community to:
  • other regulators and to law enforcement agencies
  • comply with a Court or other order requiring production
  • an insurer, lender, client or other.
  1. We make this commitment in the public and consumer interest and in line with the principles of good regulation.
  2. There will be types of information that the CLC is not able to share for legal, commercial or regulatory reasons. The exemptions are set out in the next section.

EXEMPTIONS

  1. Our approach to considering exemptions to our general commitment to openness takes account of general freedom of information practice, the public interest and the principles of good regulation (proportionality, accountability, consistency, transparency, targeting).
  2. The following exemptions will identify particular categories or items of information that should not be published by the CLC. The first three are absolute exemptions. The remainder are qualified exemptions in which case the grounds for the exemption will be tested against our commitment to openness.

Absolute Exemptions

  1. Personal data – Data within the meaning of Article 4(1) General Data Protection Regulations[1], other than as permitted by statute (e.g. the requirement at s.19 Administration of Justice Act 1985 for the CLC to keep a register of licensed conveyancers).
  2. Confidential information – Information, the disclosure of which would constitute a breach of confidence actionable by the person who provided the information or any other person.
  3. Prohibited disclosures – Information the disclosure of which is incompatible with any law or which would constitute or be punishable as contempt of court (e.g. ‘tipping off’ under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002).

Qualified Exemptions

  1. The following exemptions are not absolute. They set out reasons why we might decide not to make information available. Before they are applied we will consider them against the public and consumer interest in disclosure, our regulatory responsibilities and our commitment to being as open as possible.
  1. Legal professional privilege – Information which would be protected by privilege in legal proceedings
  2. Trade secrets and commercial interests – Information the disclosure of which would or would be likely to prejudice the commercial interests of the CLC, an organisation regulated by the CLC or any other person.
  3. Future publication – Where publication of the information is planned and it is reasonable to withhold the information until the date of publication.
  4. Investigations and proceedings – Information the CLC has collected and holds for the purpose of regulatory investigations and proceedings or any criminal or civil proceedings.
  5. Regulatory and law enforcement – Information the disclosure of which would, or may, prejudice regulatory action to the taken by the CLC or law enforcement operations.
  6. Policy in development – Information that has been collected and/or is held to support the development of policy, including records of discussion of that policy development, publication of which would inhibit the policy development process. Wherever possible such information will be published once the relevant policy decision has been made.

Policy Review

This policy was initially agreed by the CLC Council in 2014. We keep our publication policy under regular review. This policy was last updated in May 2018.

[1] Personal data means any information relating to an identified or identifiable natural person (‘data subject’); an identifiable natural person is one who can be identified, directly or indirectly, in particular by reference to an identifier such as a name, an identification number, location data, an online identifier or to one or more factors specific to the physical, physiological, genetic, mental, economic, cultural or social identity of that natural person.

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