- Question: I was convicted of a serious crime about six years ago and I was innocent and had lots of evidence to prove so and the conviction was quashed on appeal. Unfortunately, my face is attached to that conviction because the media caught me before the courts' decision and I feel sure it is why I wasn't successful with a job interview that I recently went to. I will be forever associated with that case if I don't get the information taken down. Do I have a reasonable chance if I apply for a right to be forgotten?
Yes. An individual who was convicted of a serious crime but whose conviction was quashed on appeal should be removed from the search results. To be associated with a crime that you didn’t commit will come up over and over again on Google and even if you are innocent, it could put questions in people’s minds and not do you any favours.
You didn’t commit a crime, so we are certain that you shouldn’t have any problems. Even so, if you had, many crimes are considered ‘spent’ after a certain period of time and Google has agreed to remove information where a person no longer has to declare it, in order to give them a fresh start.
Make sure you give them all of the information possible but please do contact us to help you prepare the application, if you like, as you may only get this one chance.
- Question: I am a doctor and I am on a conditional suspension after the decision was made by the medical disciplinary panel after a patient of mine wasn't happy with my post operative care and complained and subsequently, I was put on a suspension which I appealed because it was unfair. This was a one-off occasion and it was agreed that I would learn from it and I was still able to practise. I have been a doctor for so many years and this is the first complaint. I have been blacklisted on a forum and this is easily accessed by anyone googling my name. I have been told that I cannot have this information removed. I agree that people need to know about doctors but the truth is that I am allowed to practise but this blacklist states that I am not fit. What can I do?
Did Google tell you that you cannot have this information removed? If they did, then you would have to appeal that decision with the ICO. If it wasn’t them that told you that you can’t have the information removed, there is good, positive news for you.
Recently, there has been a case very similar to yours in the news. It was about a Dutch surgeon who had experienced the same. She has won in a landmark case against Google after they refused her application. The judge said that while the information on the website with reference to the failings of the doctor from five years ago was correct, the pejorative name of the blacklist site suggested she was unfit to treat people, and that was not supported by the disciplinary panel’s findings. Since the ruling, her lawyer has sought the removal of the details of 15 doctors from the blacklist and half have been removed, so there is a great chance for you in your application and if you want us to help you, please don’t hesitate to be in touch.
- Question: When I was at school, I posted a lot of comments and reviews that I just don’t want to be associated with anymore. They are outdated and immature and they are certainly not giving me any credibility in my medical profession. Google refused my Right to be Forgotten. I don’t why. They are just silly comments that I made all of those years ago. What can I do?.
The first thing to do is not to despair. If your right to be forgotten was refused, there are at least two other options for you. The first one is to file an application of ‘concern’ with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) to appeal Google’s decision. This is a document that runs 30 pages long and we advise that it is prepared to the highest possible standard and that it is filled in comprehensively, with lists of exhibits where your data appears and accompanied with any other evidence. A successful appeal to the ICO against Google’s decision on rejecting your right to be forgotten application will result in the ICO recommending to Google that all information about you is to be removed from its search engines but this does not guarantee that they will. Google may ask ICO for a review of their decision. Meanwhile, time is going by and you may not be informed by Google or the ICO that they are reviewing your situation and trying to reach a decision. Unfortunately, the ICO may decide to reverse their decision and actually agree with Google that your right to be forgotten is refused.We know of cases where the applicant hasn’t been informed of the decision, let alone known about the procedure that was happening and therefore, not being given a chance to respond. You may find yourself trying to convince the ICO or you may decide to take the matter to court.
The second is to issue Google with a Section 10 letter, under the Data Protection Act (DPA) and this will initiate a legal process which most likely will end up in Court.
You can take the ICO or Google to court, which is going to be expensive and with risks.
We thoroughly recommend that you contact us to discuss your right to be forgotten refusal. It could save you a lot of time and a lot of anxiety. Your career is important. We have a wealth of experience and we will be happy to assist you with your decision and answer any questions about which route to go down.
- Question: I had no idea that there was any information about me on the internet because I am not on Facebook or Instagram or whatever is out there to join and I Googled my name for fun the other day, to see if there were other people with the same name. I was gobsmacked. There is a link to a newspaper article that details the debt problems that I got into years ago that led to debt recovery proceedings. This will do me no favours, right?
Well, it depends on your job or position and whether you are in the public eye and even so, it may not do you any harm but the fact is, you want it removed and it is outdated.
If you are not a public figure and your interest in having the article removed outweighs the general public’s interest in having access to the information about you then Google are obliged to remove links to the web pages including your name and surname from the results.
If it is old information and no longer relevant, let Google know. Fill in the application with all of the link addresses and anywhere you see this information online. Again, we are here to help, should you want us to do it for you. Very often, you will have more success in complete removal.
- Question: Does it make a difference about removal, if the material about me on the internet was published after the ruling of Right To Be Forgotten in 2014?.
If the defamation online was first published after the ruling of Right to be Forgotten on the 1st January 2014, the success in removing it will depend on how soon you can get the information on the location of the poster of the defamation. The liability of the operator of the offending website where the defamatory comments were left by a blogger may depend on this factor.
Learn more about how to remove defamation from the internet on our defamation lawyer website.
- Question: I committed a relatively minor offence 20 years ago when I was a kid. I learnt my lesson pretty quickly but it crops up on the internet all the time, so I am not allowed to forget about it. It created a lot of publicity in my area and made all the local newspapers and so, it remains online. I have my own business now and luckily, I don’t feel like it has affected me yet but I feel like it will. I applied to Google when this right to be forgotten came out and they wanted so much information about it and I am not au fait with the internet at all. They wanted me to list URL addresses and it left me feeling confused and I didn’t want to ask for help with it and ignored it but it feels like a ball and chain around my ankles. What can I do?.
Google have agreed to remove reports of a guilty verdict against an individual for a crime considered ‘spent’ under UK law – where it happened so long ago that the person is no longer required to declare it when asked if they have any criminal convictions. This law was designed to give minor criminals a fresh start to avoid being trapped into a life of crime through being unable to gain employment.
I have wonderful news for you about the information too because Google don’t ask for that much information anymore with a right to be forgotten, so you will feel less daunted.
You can go online and fill in the form quite quickly than when it was first passed in 2014. Tell them that your crime is spent. They should be able to remove the whole thing; everything about you. Send them all of the web page addresses (URLS) of where they are (copy and paste ensures that you don’t miss anything). You mentioned that you felt confused and if that is still the case and you feel like you don’t want to do this yourself, we would be very happy to help you here at Cohen Davis.
- Question: I desperately need help. When I was a student, I was offered a lot of money to appear in an adult video, which I did. A lot of pictures were taken of me, too. I fell out with the producer when I told him that I didn't want to make any more. Since then, for over 20 years, he has plastered my video and images everywhere, with my full real name. I changed my name, moved town, dyed my hair and instead of the profession I was studying for, the depression over this harassment, led me to fall out of school not long afterwards and I have been flitting about in low-paying jobs without prospects for a while. I feel so sad and regretful. Is this something that a right to be forgotten application could do? Get rid of them forever?.
Please don’t despair. We have a solution for you. In answer to your question though firstly, it depends on the amount of material there is for a right to be forgotten to be fully successful and even so, they would only remove links and not the source. I would recommend, in this instance, that you call Cohen Davis. We have the strategies to remove tens of thousands of web links, URLs to images and videos. We can secure full clean ups of the material about you. What we can also do are copyright buybacks, privacy notices, stage name trademark acquisitions, harassment notices, data protection notices and so much more. We can also put together a manageable maintenance plan to help you with keeping the internet clear of anything about you, forever more. We can give you back your life. I would urge you to call us, so that we can help you with that. As soon as we start working on it, the sooner it will happen. Call us for a highly confidential talk and we can discuss what we can achieve for you.
- Question: Where can I find more information about a right to be forgotten and any other legal advice that is internet-related?
Go to: www.yaircohen.co.uk to read and watch more from Yair Cohen.