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Why you need to act fast to secure CCTV footage for your claim

There are no guarantees that this vital piece of evidence will be available when you need it unless an early request is made for this information.

Part of the process of making a personal injury claim is gathering clear and compelling evidence to build a strong case. One of the most valuable sources of evidence can be CCTV footage.

The use of CCTV cameras is now a normal part of Irish society, with cameras used in a range of businesses, such as restaurants, pubs and shopping centres, as well as on streets, public transport, and even in cars through the use of dash cams.

In Ireland, the use of CCTV cameras is regulated by the Data Protection Act 2018 and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). These laws require businesses and individuals who operate CCTV systems to comply with guidelines on data protection and privacy.

One aspect of these regulations relates to the length of time a business or individual can retain its CCTV footage.

Generally, businesses are only allowed to keep CCTV footage for a limited period, usually up to 30 days, but sometimes it is deleted as early as 14 days.

However, this can vary depending on the business’s own data retention policy. The general principle is that footage should not be kept for longer than necessary for the purpose it was recorded.

Because of this, it’s not a given that footage of your incident will be readily available when you need it, which is why it’s so important to act swiftly if you believe CCTV footage could support your case.

If you don’t request the footage in time, it could be deleted. This means you could potentially lose critical evidence to support your case.

Here are some tips for getting CCTV footage of your accident:

Identify the cameras

As soon as you’re involved in an accident, identify any nearby cameras that may have captured the event. This includes cameras owned by businesses, or even private residences or dash cams.

Note down all relevant details

Specify the date, time, and location of the incident. Providing these details can help the organisation or individual who holds the CCTV footage, known as the data controller, to locate the footage that relates to your incident.

Speak to a solicitor

While individuals have the right to request CCTV footage, having legal support can make the process easier. A solicitor experienced in personal injury law can submit this request for you. They can also ensure the request complies with legal standards.

If your solicitor does not receive a timely response, they will follow up with the data controller. Persistence is crucial, as delays can lead to the footage being overwritten or deleted.

If there are difficulties in obtaining the footage, your solicitor will contact the Data Protection Commission (DPC) for assistance. The DPC oversees data protection laws in Ireland and can provide guidance on how to proceed if your request is being unjustly denied.

Importance of Legal Guidance

Engaging a solicitor with expertise in personal injury law not only helps in acquiring vital evidence like CCTV footage but also ensures all legal procedures are followed correctly, thereby strengthening your case.

CCTV footage can be a powerful piece of evidence in personal injury cases, but securing it requires prompt and informed action. At Tracey Solicitors LLP, we understand the critical role that evidence plays in personal injury claims. Our experienced team is dedicated to assisting you at every stage of your case, from gathering evidence to representing you in court.

Contact us to tell us about your case.