Can I take leagal action if my privacy rights were violated?

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Can I take leagal action if my privacy rights were violated?

A family member was able to obtain all information history on my auto loan; they are not on this account and I was never asked permission.

Asked on July 14, 2010 under General Practice, Illinois


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 14 years ago | Contributor

You might possibly. There are several factors to consider.

1) Did the party that violated your privacy have any duty to you to keep the information private? It would seem so from what you right, because the lender or auto dealer should not have disclosed this information to another.

2) Was the information such that a reasonable person would be offended were it released? (Important: the issue is not whether you were offended; it's a generic, "reasonable person" standard.) This depends on precisely what information was released; e.g. if it's just information relating to how much you paid for a car, that's not particularly private or offensive.

3) Was the information available from some publically available or other source? If so, it may not be a violation to have released it.

4) And has the information damaged you in some way? If it hasn't there's not really anything to sue over.

If the answers to 1), 2), and 4) were yes and the answer to 3) was no, you should consult with an attorney who can evaluate your case in more detail. Good luck.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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