Make A Data Breach Compensation Claim Today

Data breach law is a fast evolving area and the number of compensation claims are rising. If you’ve been impacted by a UK GDPR breach, we can help you.

  • Compensation Payouts Of Up To £10,000+
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Not all solicitors can help with data breach claims due to their complex nature. Our team is made up of specialists in this field.

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Key figures…

DataBreachClaims.org.uk has
handled over

5,000

Data breach compensation claim enquiries

The Most Common Data Breaches We Help With

We can help with all types of data breach claims, but some of the most common that we see include:

  • Bank data breaches
  • Medical data breaches
  • Breaches by police forces
  • Data breaches caused by FOI requests
  • Social services data breaches
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What Is A Data Breach?

data breach is an incident where your personal or sensitive information is changed, lost, disclosed, accessed or destroyed without your permission or a lawful reason.

Personal data or personal information is anything that can directly identify you or identify you in combination with other information. For example, your name, email address or bank details would be personal data.

Sensitive data includes the likes of your race, religion or biometric data.

The General Data Protection Regulation (UK GDPR) was enacted into British law in 2018 alongside an amended version of the Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA). It states that organisations that process personal information should protect it.

If they fail to do so, you could make a data breach compensation claim. We look at the criteria to make a claim in the section below.

How Common Are Data Breaches?

Data breaches are on the rise, and they’re impacting a range of different sectors. To give you an idea, we can look at our own case study on council data breaches.

Recently, we conducted our own first-hand research into the number of local council data breaches, which you can read here. Our statistics show that there has been a significant rise in the number of breaches at councils and the number of compensation claims made against them as a result.

For example, Devon County Council recorded just 8 data breach incidents between 2021/22. That then rose to 38 the following year. 45 data breaches were then logged between 2023 and March 2024. This works out as an increase of 463% over the last three years.

The same is true for other councils, with Essex County Council, for example, seeing a rise of 198%.

Can I Make A Data Breach Claim?

In order to make a data breach claim, some form of wrongful conduct on the part of the data controller or data processor must have occurred.

You must also have suffered some kind of damage, known as material or non-material damage. The latter relates to the psychological impact the data breach has had, such as causing you distress or worry. Material damage relates to the financial impact the data breach has had.

You could potentially use the services of a solicitor to claim data breach compensation, providing the breach exposed your personal information and you suffered financially or mentally as a consequence.

You can contact us here at Data Breach Claims UK to learn more about your legal rights, as well as to commence the process of making a claim.

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How Long Do I Have To Make A Data Breach Compensation Claim?

If you’re claiming against a private company, such as a hotel or bank, the time limit could be 6 years.

However, if your data breach is against a public body, such as the local council or police, you could have just 1 year to take action. 

The data breach claim time limit can vary, however, so it’s always best to speak with someone. Getting the date wrong could see you prevented from making a claim altogether.

Recent Data Breaches We Can Help With

In the last few years there have been some significant data breaches that have impacted hundreds of thousands of people.

Below, you can find a table with a breakdown of some of the current data breach claims we’re helping with. In some cases, we’re representing hundreds of claimants, and we can help you too.

CaseHow Many People Were Affected?
Southern WaterUp to 470,000
South Staffordshire Water200,000+
Capita/USS Pensions500,000+
Blackbaud100,000+

In many of these cases, the data breach happened due to a cyber attack. If your personal data was affected you should have received a data breach notification letter or email. If you haven’t, you can check with the company and ask them for confirmation.

If you’ve been impacted by any of these cases, please get in touch today for free advice.

Examples Of Data Breaches You Could Claim Compensation For

Personal information is anything that can help identify you. Data breaches can involve many types of information, such as the below. 

  • A letter is sent to the wrong postal address. If a letter containing personal information is delivered to a different address, despite you updating it with the organisation, someone unauthorised could access your personal information. 
  • Failure to redact personal information in publications. If a leaflet is sent out to people’s addresses containing your personal information without a lawful reason, you could experience harm. If so, you could make a data breach claim. 
  • Failure to BCC emails. The BCC field in emails means that recipients can’t see who else the email has been sent to. If a health email is sent out and isn’t BCC’d, people who suffer from the health condition may be exposed without their consent or another lawful reason.
  • Email sent to the wrong recipient. If an organisation sends an email containing personal information to the wrong person without a lawful reason, it could be accessed.
  • Your medical records are lost. If for example your GP leaves your medical records in their car and the car gets stolen, you could claim compensation
  • Social services data breaches. If, for example, you’ve relocated due to threats to your safety from an ex-partner, if social services disclose your new address, you could sue them.
  • The police could also breach your data. For example, if you’ve given confidential evidence in a criminal case, the police could accidentally disclose your identity. You can learn more about what you can do if the police breach your data here. You can find advice on reporting it, securing your data, and making a claim.

If any of the circumstances above look familiar, please get in touch today for a free case check.

To discover more examples of data breaches, how they happen and what you can do to mitigate the impact, check out this comprehensive guide.

How Much Compensation Will I Get For A Data Breach?

Data breach compensation payouts can consist of two types of damage: financial damage (known as material damage) and psychological damage (known as non-material damage).

Let’s look at material damage first.

Can I Claim Back Money Lost Due To A Data Breach?

In some cases, your finances may suffer because of a data breach. You may experience stress due to the breach which could see you have to take time off work. Some companies don’t offer sick pay, so if you lose money you could get this money back as part of your data breach compensation claim.

It’s also possible to claim back the costs of any counselling or therapy you’ve paid for to help you cope with the stress of the situation.

In order to successfully recover these fees, it’s best to keep a record of all of your costs and expenses.

How Much Could You Sue A Company For A Data Breach?

We often get asked about average payouts, but the reality is that how much compensation you get for a data breach can vary from case to case. It all depends on the impact the incident has had on the individual. However, here’s a quick breakdown:

  • As a general guide, straightforward cases where the impact is minor could receive between £1,000 and up to £25,000. This could be in cases where your name, address, and email address have been shared.
  • More serious cases with financial losses as well as serious psychiatric damage too could see compensation settlements exceed £25,000. This could involve cases where sensitive data has been exposed and the impact is severe.

Non-material damage compensates for the mental harm you’ve experienced due to the data breach. An example of this could be anxiety or a worsening of pre-existing depression.

It’s possible to get an idea of how much you could receive for a data breach by looking at a document called the Judicial College Guidelines. This is a publication that data breach solicitors use to help them value injuries.

This compensation table contains the latest available figures (published in 2024). They only offer guidance, however, and settlements may vary from case to case.

InjurySeverityCompensation
Financial Losses and InjuriesUp to £500,000+
Psychiatric DamageSevere - in cases where the data breach has a permanent negative impact on a person's day to day life and work£66,920 to £141,240
Moderately Severe - similar symptoms to severe cases but with a better chance of a recovery£23,270 to £66,920
Moderate - symptoms may not be as severe and the chances of recovery are positive£7,150 to £23,270
Less Severe£1,880 to £7,150
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)Severe - these types of cases will involve permanent impacts that badly affect every aspect of a person's life£73,050 to £122,850
Moderately Severe - the difference between this and Severe cases is the better chance of recovery£28,250 to £73,050
Moderate - significant symptoms but with a good recovery£9,980 to £28,250
Less Severe - in cases where a full recovery can be made within a couple of years£4,820 to £9,980

So for instance, if your social services incorrectly record your data, causing you to lose custody of your children, this may cause distress that may have an permanent impact on your life. If you’re unable to work again and if your day to day life is disrupted, you could receive between £66,920 to £141,240.

If you’d like more help calculating your potential data breach compensation payout, please get in touch. We offer free advice to everyone who calls.

Do I Need To Report A Data Breach To The ICO In Order To Claim?

A question we often get asked is whether or not you need to report a data breach to the ICO in order to make a compensation claim. The short answer is no.

However, when it comes to reporting a data breach, claims can get a real boost if you report the incident to the organisation you think is responsible—that is if they haven’t already sent you a letter or email notifying you that your data has been impacted in a breach.

In making this complaint with the company, they provide you with written confirmation that you are affected, which confirms to a solicitor that you could have valid grounds to pursue compensation.

If you make a complaint to the organisation but they haven’t responded within around 3 months, the ICO then recommends that you submit a complaint to them directly.

They will then investigate and provide you with a meaningful response which you can then take to a solicitor to hopefully obtain legal representation.

If you need any help or support with the reporting of a data breach, or if you’d like to make a claim, get in touch. Our helpline, found at the top of this page, is open 24 hours a day to ensure you get the advice and representation you need.

What Evidence Do I Need To Make A Data Breach Claim?

Supporting evidence usually plays an important role in settling a claim for your data breach damages. When possible, you should collect and maintain any relevant documents or materials that can act as:

  • Evidence of the breach
  • Evidence of the harm you have suffered.

Evidence of the breach in your claim can come in the form of:

  • Screenshots, photos, or similar evidence showing the exposure or misuse of your personal information
  • Emails, or similar correspondence with the organisation, wherein they admit to the breach

Evidence of the harm the breach caused, which can be:

  • Financial records of any losses that may have occurred because of the breach
  • A medical diagnosis of the psychological injury the breach may have led to you suffering, such as anxiety or stress.

Data breach lawyers can not only advise you on evidence to collect in your claim but could also request it on your behalf or help arrange relevant appointments for you. If you are looking for help with evidence in your claim, please reach out to one of our advisers.

What Is The Data Breach Claims Process Like?

When claiming compensation for data protection breaches, the process is much like any other type of claim. Once you are able to set up your case with your data breach solicitor (assuming you hired one) and they have all of the evidence available, they will begin their investigations.

It’s likely that your data breach lawyer will present your case to the defendant by sending them a letter of claim. This sets out your case, explaining the impact the breach has had and inviting them to settle.

The defendant will then spend some time investigating the case themselves. In straightforward data breach claims, they may already be aware of their liabilities so could make an early offer of settlement.

However, if you’re still suffering from the impact of the data breach, such as feeling distressed or anxious, it may not be in your best interests to resolve the case so soon.

Your solicitor will likely arrange for you to be medically examined by an independent expert. They will assess your condition and produce a report which your solicitor will use to determine just how much data breach compensation you could be entitled to.

If they have strong evidence that supports your case, your solicitor should be able to negotiate a settlement on your behalf. If you still have any questions about data breach claims process, please contact our team of advisors.

Connect With A No Win No Fee Data Breach Solicitor Today

A data breach lawyer or solicitor from our panel could take your case on a No Win No Fee basis if you have a valid claim. There are various benefits to making a data breach claim using a No Win No Fee agreement.

The main benefit is that you wouldn’t need to pay for the services your data breach solicitor provides if your claim fails. Additionally, you wouldn’t be charged an upfront fee or ongoing costs during the course of your claim.

In the case of successful claims, you would pay your data breach lawyer or solicitor a success fee. This is a small portion of your compensation and is a legally capped amount.

To see if you’re eligible to claim or if you want to hire a solicitor from our panel, please contact us for free using the details above.

Learn More About Data Breach Claims

Below, you can find more information and guides on making a claim for a data breach:

  • For Organisations: You can find out more information about how organisations can protect people’s personal data on this page. 
  • Your Data Matters: This page includes information on how the ICO has worked to prevent data breaches. 
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD): If you’re suffering from PTSD, this NHS guide includes important information. 

Check out more of our guides below:

We hope that this page on data breach law and claiming compensation for a breach of data protection has been helpful. For more information, you can read more of our guides on data breach claims or you can get in contact with our team for further help.

Have any of the following every happened to you?

If any of the below scenarios sound familiar, you could make a data breach compensation claim:

  • Your personal information was stolen, hacked or lost.
  • Your personal or sensitive data was made public.
  • Your data was stored with inaccuracies or is outdated.
  • Your private data was subjected to disclosure that you did not consent to.
  • Your personal information wasn’t deleted within specified time frames.
  • Your data was breached due to a disclosure with malicious intent.
  • Your data was not used in the way that you consented to.
  • Your personal information was used to committ fraud, such as taking out credit in your name.

You can also speak with us on 020 8050 3051

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) On Data Breach Compensation Claims

What should I do if my data is breached?


It’s important to first find out what information has been exposed. You can do this by contacting the responsible organisation or by reviewing a data breach notification letter or email you may have received.

If your financial data has been compromised, you should speak with your bank. They can help you take steps to secure your information.

If you’re concerned, worried or stressed about your personal information being exposed, it’s vital to keep a sharp eye out. Watch for suspicious calls, texts or emails.

You can also seek legal advice on your position. You could be entitled to significant compensation.

How Long Do Data Breach Claims Take?

Claims for data protection breach compensation can take a varying amount of time to complete. In more straightforward cases in which liability is clear and obvious, the defendant admits fault quickly, and the extent of harm caused to you is relatively straightforward to confirm, a claim may take somewhere between 8 and 12 months to resolve.

In a more complicated data breach claim, more investigations may be required which may prolong the length of the case.

These investigations may involve assessing the impact on finances and credit scores, for example.

Cases involving more serious psychological conditions may take time too, especially if the prognosis of recovery is some time off. To settle a claim of this nature too soon may see you lose out on more data breach compensation.

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