Stewarts advises and represents clients in relation to litigation resulting from breaches of data protection laws, including with regard to business-to-business and group litigation actions.

From 1 October 2019 an English High Court claim must be issued in the Media and Communications List if it is or includes a claim in data protection law, where it will be adjudicated by a specialist Media and Communications Judge. These judges will decide on matters such as:

  • Remedies under Article 78 of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) against decisions of supervisory authorities;
  • Remedies under Article 79 of the GDPR against data controllers and processors that infringe data rights; and
  • Compensation and liability under Article 82 of the GDPR, including in relation to representation actions under Article 80 of the GDPR.

It is important to note that Recital 146 of the GDPR states:

“Data subjects should receive full and effective compensation for the damage they have suffered… Any controller or processor which has paid full compensation may subsequently institute recourse proceedings against other controllers or processors involved in the same processing.”

Claims for compensation relating to breaches of the GDPR can be brought in the English High Court for “material or non-material damage”, such as:

  • Financial loss;
  • Distress;
  • Identity theft or fraud;
  • Damage to reputation;
  • Loss of confidentiality of personal data protected by professional secrecy;
  • Unauthorised reversal of pseudonymisation;
  • Loss of control over personal data;
  • Limitation of data rights;
  • Discrimination; and
  • Any other significant economic or social disadvantage to the natural person concerned.

A person who suffers damage by reason of a contravention of a requirement of UK data protection legislation other than the GDPR is also entitled to compensation for that damage from the controller or the processor, under section 169 of the UK’s Data Protection Act 2018.

Section 167 of the Data Protection Act 2018 also authorises the High Court to make orders to secure compliance with UK data protection legislation.

Our team deals with data protection litigation in the UK, and also coordinates multi-jurisdictional disputes with foreign law firms and specialists, particularly as the GDPR has international applicability.

We have unrivalled experience in putting together innovative costs arrangements. The use of third party funding, after-the-event insurance and risk-sharing fee agreements enable our clients to manage risk and litigate from a position of financial strength.

If you require assistance, please contact us or request a call from one of our lawyers.

Meet our Media Disputes team

Our team are experts in the media sector.

We deal with matters in the UK courts and in foreign jurisdictions, as well as in relation to complaints made to UK regulators.

Pauline Runge - Avocat au Barreau de Paris, Registered European Lawyer