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I'm in the process of buying a house and have paid for a survey to be done on the property. I have received a contract from the solicitor who will be conducting the survey for me and will provide me with a report of the findings. I found something interesting in regards to how they will use my personal information. The contract states:

We will use the personal information you provided to us:
- To supply the report to you
- to process any payment for the report; and
- If you agree to this during the order process, to give you information about similar products that we provide, but you may stop receiving this at any time by contacting us.

My question is focusing on the third bullet point. It's hard to decipher because I don't think the sentence makes sense anyway (copied exactly how the letter says), and it's possible there is a typo in there, but it sounds like they are saying I will have to opt out of their marketing, rather than opting in like the new GDPR law states.

At the back there is also a check list of things you agree to, such as I have read and understood the guide, understood that I cannot cancel my contract after the 'cooling period', and "I agree to the privacy terms stated above". There is no mention of marketing. Would that mean that I am agreeing to marketing, as per the third bullet point? There is no tick box for "I do not wish to be added to your marketing".

Should I contact the company and request a new contract? I am in the UK.

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The line they'll rely on for GDPR compliance is the first part of that sentence - "If you agree to this during the order process", which suggests that there will be a separate request to opt in to marketing communications at some other time in the process.

Check any order documents. There's likely to be a tick box or similar on at least one. If that implies opting out rather than opting in there may be grounds to argue with that under GDPR, but there's nothing in the quoted text that suggests a problem.

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I think the way the sentence was structured was confusing. Now that I can make sense of it, it would be better if the sentence read:

We will use the personal information you provided to us: To give you information about similar products that we provide (if you agree to this during the ordering process but you may stop receiving this at any time by contacting us).

Thanks to @ItWasLikeThatWhenIGotHere for making me see the sentence in a different way.

  • Yes - I'd juggled the parts of the sentence in my head so they made sense. It's much clearer if you move the bit about agreement to later in the paragraph. – ItWasLikeThatWhenIGotHere Jan 22 at 15:34

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