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Mediation success in breach of confidence claim against local authority

01 October 2010

We acted for this police officer and his wife in their claims for breach of confidence and misuse of private information against South Hams District Council. The claims arose as a result of the disclosure by a Council employee to the Hodgsons’ neighbours of an Anti-Social Behaviour Diary Mr Hodgson had kept. The Hodgsons were already suffering threats and abuse by their neighbours, documented in the diary, but they claimed its disclosure upped the ante and that there was an increased level of harassment and the seriousness of the threats and abuse. Given the sensitive nature of this matter and the strong feelings on the Hodgsons’ part, we encouraged the resolution of this matter by alternative dispute resolution. Using mediation, we were able to agree settlement terms with the Council, with payment of damages to the Hodgsons, a letter of apology and a contribution to their legal costs.