What is the current position?

As proposed managing solicitors for a group action, we appeared before the High Court on 19 January 2024, along with other representatives. A draft group litigation order (“GLO”) had been agreed between solicitors for the majority of the plaintiffs and the Defendant indicated that they had no objection to the order.

The Court adjourned matters until 23 February 2024 to allow time for matters to be fully considered by all parties and the Court.

What is a GLO?

A GLO will allow for the management of the thousands of claims in effective fashion, and for universal questions like liability to be dealt with speedily. Each claim will still be considered individually in terms of the amount of damages, taking into account that each plaintiff will have been affected differently.

Will everyone affected be included in the GLO?

Yes, if the Court makes a GLO, it will cover all those affected who are bringing claims.

What is the next step for me?

If you are a PFNI member, you should have received a questionnaire from the PFNI. Thank you to those who have already completed and returned the questionnaire. If you have not yet returned your questionnaire, we would ask that you take some time to complete and return it to the PFNI, who will in turn pass it securely to us.

If you are not a PFNI member, you should have received a questionnaire directly from Edwards & Co. Again, thank you to those who have already completed and returned their questionnaire. If you have not yet done so, we would ask that you take some time to complete it and return it directly to us.

What if I haven’t received a questionnaire?

Firstly, please check your junk mail and spam folders to check that the email is not there.

If not, and if you are a PFNI member, please contact the PFNI to check that you are registered and to ask for a questionnaire to be sent to you.

If you are not a PFNI member and you have not received a questionnaire, please contact us

directly via email at psnidatabreach@edwardsandcompany.co.uk, or by calling our office and speaking to Philip Gordon, Reece Lockhart or Rachel Powderly.

What about the £500 offered by the PSNI?

It was previously suggested that there would be an offer of £500 made to every individual affected to assist with security costs, whether or not security costs had been incurred. This has now changed, and the offer is for a sum up to £500 based on receipts to be provided by each individual. The PSNI have suggested that this is to avoid tax being payable on any payment.

As set out in our previous update, acceptance of the offer of up to £500 will not compromise or prevent any individual from bringing a claim for compensation, save that if any individual intends to claim special damages for financial loss in respect of the cost of installing physical security measures/equipment at their home, the PSNI will require the recipient to acknowledge in writing, before accepting the offer, that the already paid to the individual will be set off against that special damages claim.

What about the independent review?

As set out in our previous update, the independent review into the data breach is available here: https://www.psni.police.uk/about-us/independent-review

The report is helpful and we remain firmly of the view that liability cannot reasonably be disputed by the Chief Constable.

How do I contact you if I have any queries?

If you have any queries from time to time, please contact us via email at psnidatabreach@edwardsandcompany.co.uk, or by calling our office and speaking to Philip Gordon, Reece Lockhart or Rachel Powderly.

We will also continue to provide regular updates via the Police Federation.