Paul has been qualified 34 years. He is one of the leading Scottish data protection practitioners. He is a Solicitor Advocate who regularly appears in court. He was on the Board of a Charity called The Bike Station between 2012 and 2017. His experience includes:
Appeared before the First Tier (Information Rights) Tribunal over four days, representing Scottish Borders Council v ICO. A £250,000 DPA 1998 Monetary Penalty was cancelled by the Tribunal. The only successful such appeal in the UK to date. Paul was lead counsel with BTO Partner (then Associate) Laura Irvine.
Appeared in Edinburgh Sheriff Court over three days January 2017 to successfully obtain £18,000 DPA 1998 distress damages for a family subjected to CCTV surveillance including audio recording (Woolley –v- Akbar).
Appeared in Edinburgh Sheriff Court over three days in April 2017 to successfully defend a golf course operator against a DPA 1998 distress damages claim (Rohan Beyts –v- Trump International Golf Links Scotland Limited).
Has advised colleges, Councils, RSLs and tender bidders on a variety of FOISA/EIRS issues.
Has provided DPA 1998 advice since the early 2000s. For well over a decade he has advised countless RSLs and care providers on a multitude of data protection issues including: telecare, common area surveillance, Subject Access Requests for neighbour complaints and complaint files; covert CCTV recording of care workers by service users families.
Paul is providing GDPR Implementation Guidance for clients preparing for 25 May 2018.
Complementing his data protection experience, Paul has a specialism in defamation and social media law which is increasingly called upon by the leadership teams of Housing Associations under attack via Wordpress Blogs, Facebook, Twitter and news media, paper and online. He has also represented well known politicians and recently a family businesses with which one of them was connected.
Data protection training is a BTO speciality. For example Paul worked with Laura Irvine to present extensive amounts of data protection training to Fife Council in 2015 and 2016. They trained in excess of 1000 staff and ran a bespoke workshop for head teachers. They have presented data protection training to Scottish Borders Council, South Lanarkshire Council, Aberdeenshire Council, RICS and many housing associations as well as running workshops for housing training associations such as SHARE and SFHA for whom recent GDPR training has been provided. GDPR compliance advice and documentation is being provided to many clients including housing associations.
Convenor of the Law Society of Scotland's Technology Committee, 2000 – 2016.
Secretary then Civil Vice President to the Society of Solicitor Advocates, 2002 – 2011.
Board Member and latterly Chairman, Scottish Society for Computers & Law, 2005 – 2011.
Director of the charity Recycle to Cycle (Trading) Ltd t/a The Bike Station 2012 - 2017.
Scottish Regional Representative 2012 – date, Vulcan to the Sky Trust , an aircraft preservation charity.
Cycling, running, DIY, travel, Scottish Region representative of 'Vulcan to the Sky' aircraft project: "XH558 - Honouring the Past/ Inspiring the Future."