Are you GDPR ready?

It is unlikely to have gone unnoticed from the volume of emails asking individuals to “opt in” to future company mailing lists that tomorrow (Friday 25 May), the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into effect in all EU countries and in the UK it will be supplemented by the Data Protection Act 2018. The stakes are high – if your company does not comply, it could be fined up to 4% of worldwide turnover or 20 million Euros, whichever is higher.  As the information being held by landlords and developers is likely to be varied and complex (and not just employee data), such industries are in a vulnerable position with regards to compliance.

So what do companies operating in the real estate sector need to do?

  • Read the rest of this blog post for a reminder of the types of personal data which you might be holding on your databases which will need to be GDPR compliant;
  • Check our HSF hub page on GDPR here; and
  • Contact us at HSF with any queries or for further information.

GDPR will affect anyone using, collecting, processing and storing personal data. Personal data covers the type of information which you would expect, for example contact name and details, but could also include information collected by landlords and developers on building management systems and databases (for example when an individual enters and exits a building, and see more examples below).

The property development industry appeared to be lagging behind other sectors in its preparation for GDPR so we have put together a brief reminder of the types of personal data which you might be holding on your company databases which will be subject to GDPR requirements. This could include:

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“Women Leading Real Estate” – change is afoot

Herbert Smith Freehills was out in force at a fantastic, thought provoking breakfast event yesterday at the Hilton, Park Lane organised by Bisnow and entitled “Women Leading Real Estate”.

There was a keynote interview with Alison Nimmo, CEO of The Crown Estate, and a panel session on “Driving Change & Building the Pipeline for Aspiring Young Leaders” with panellists:

  • Colette O’Shea, Managing Director at LandSec;
  • Sherin Aminossehe, Head of Offices at Lendlease;
  • Brian Bickell, CEO of Shaftsbury;
  • Lynda Shillaw, CEO of Magairports; and
  • Sue Clayton, Executive Director, Capital Markets at CBRE

Closing remarks were given by Vivenne King, Chair of Real Estate Balance and Andrea Carpenter, Director of Women Talk Real Estate.

The turnout was impressive – over 500 people attended this event, and the audience was predominantly female.  We are proud to be positively engaged with and part of the change taking place in the Real Estate industry.

For us, the key take home messages, for women and men in the world of real estate, were:

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Brexit: some indirect implications for development and planning

Author: Matthew White, Partner and Head of Planning, Real Estate, London

There are many briefings on what Brexit means for real estate and I don't intend to repeat them in this blog entry. There are only so many ways of saying that the outlook remains uncertain and some transactions are likely to be put on hold until the situation becomes clearer.

Instead, I want to consider some of the indirect implications of last Thursday's vote. I have spent the last week talking to clients and contacts about their concerns, many of which are less obvious than the headlines would suggest. It would be unfair to identify whom I have spoken to, but equally I cannot claim all the credit for these thoughts either.

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