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Using our Debt Relief Order (DRO) service - our privacy policy

When you contact us, we collect personal information about you so we can find out if you're eligible for a Debt Relief Order (DRO), and apply for one on your behalf.

We get your information:

  • by talking with you over the phone or face to face
  • from records on our case management system - if you've got advice from us before
  • from credit reference agencies - with your permission

If you call us, we'll record the conversation for training and monitoring purposes.

What information we ask for

We only record information that will help us assess your eligibility for a DRO and complete your DRO application. This includes your name, contact details and information about your financial situation such as debts, income and expenditure.

With your permission we'll contact credit reference agencies on your behalf. They'll give us your credit report which tells us what debts and credit you have.

We might ask for demographic information like your gender or ethnicity.

How we use your information

The main reason we need your information is to complete your DRO application.
We'll only access your information for other reasons if we really need to - for example:

  • for training and quality purposes
  • to investigate complaints
  • to get feedback from you about our services
  • to help us improve our services

We use some information to create statistics about who we're helping and what problems are the most common. This information is always anonymised - you can't be identified. We share these with the Money Advice Service, our funder.

When we share your information with other organisations

Sometimes we share your personal information with other organisations - we only do this to help you with your application, or to monitor the quality of our services. We'll get your permission before doing this.

Organisations we share your data with must store and use it in line with data protection law - they can't pass it on or sell it without your permission.

Who we share your information with

With your permission, we might need to share your details with:

  • creditors - to get more information about your debts
  • credit reference agencies - to get a copy of your credit report
  • employers or benefits offices - to get details about your income
  • our trusted research partners, Optimisa, PWC Research and 2CV, to get your feedback on our service
  • the Money Advice Service, our funders - so they can check the quality of our advice

We share your DRO application with an official receiver at the Insolvency Service so they can process your application.

Storing your information

Your information is stored securely on our internal systems. All volunteers and staff who access your data have had data protection training to make sure your information is handled sensitively and securely.

Your DRO adviser will log all your DRO details into our secure case management system.
If you phone us, calls will be recorded by our trusted partner, KCOM. They'll be deleted after 6 months.

We keep your information for 6 years. If your case has been subject to a serious complaint, insurance claim or other dispute we keep the data for 16 years.

Our case management systems are hosted within the European Economic Area (EEA) and wherever possible, the UK.

Contact us about your information

You can contact us at any time and ask us:

  • what information we've stored about you
  • to change or update your details
  • to delete your information

Send us a message at feedback@citizensadvice.org.uk.

If you want to make a complaint

If you're not happy with how we've handled your data, you can make a complaint.