Privacy Law

Gold v Ann Summers Limited v Cox and Bingham [2012] EWHC 272 (QB)

This privacy law claim was issued on the 9th February 2012 along with an application for an injunction. The first Claimant was a director of the second Claimant.The first Defendant was employed until October 2010 as her nanny. She had a contract of employment which included a personal confidentiality agreement.

The second Defendant was a friend of the first Defendant and worked for the Claimants but had no contact or confidentiality agreement.

The judge did state there was a strong case that the implied terms as to confidentiality commonly found in employees whether temporary or otherwise.

The judge considered both Defendants by the nature of their employment and that they were looking after a young child were likely to come into possession of confidential and private information and there was a strong case that they were bound by the general law of privacy.

On the 4th March 2011 the first Defendant was convicted at Guildford crown court of attempting to poison the first Claimant. She was sentenced to 12 months imprisonment.

She was released after serving 3 months on licence.

It came to that attention of the Claimants Pr agent that an associate of the first Defendant was seeking help with a book.

It was read by the agent who considered that it was likely to be a breach of confidentiality owed by the Defendants to the Claimants.

On the 10th Feb 2012 the second Claimant said she was abroad in Thailand. She  said that she did not consent to the injunction,was writing a book about her experiences and was entitled to express her views and observations about the events of the last 2 years. She said that the first defendant was not involved in the book.

The judge felt that the second Defendant demonstrated that there was a real risk that she would breach a duty of confidentiality unless restrained by an order of the court.

The first Defendant had written to the court saying that she did not intend to publish anything in breach of the confidentiality agreement and the book had nothing to do with her.

The judge made an interlocutory order

The judge followed recent guidance and limited the amount of anonymity.

The proceedings before me were heard in public. I made only the most limited derogation from open justice in the form of provisions protecting those parts of the evidence which relate specifically to the private information of the first claimant.

The matter came back before the court on the 23rd February 2012.The Defendants did not attend but consented to final non disclosure orders being granted. Judgment was entered in favour of the Claimant



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