II SA 1631/03


11 March 2004

Considering a case from a complaint lodged by Y Joint Stock Company against a decision of the Inspector General for the Protection of Personal Data as regards the processing of Mr X`s personal data, the Supreme Administrative Court investigated the following facts of a case:

The Inspector General for the Protection of Personal Data considered the case of the processing of Mr X`s personal data by Y Joint Stock Company by transferring these data to Z Private Partnership in connection with the conclusion of a contract of assignment of claims between these companies. The Inspector General for the Protection of Personal Data ordered Y Joint Stock Company not to disclose Mr X`s personal data without fulfilling the conditions determined in the Civil Code, i.e. without Mr X`s consent.

In connection with the above Y Joint Stock Company filed a motion for reconsidering the case. In its view the Inspector General`s decision is based on the interpretation of the provisions of the Civil Code and the Act on Data Protection which was conducted in an inappropriate way. Y Joint Stock Company charged the Inspector General with irrelevancy of the proceedings conducted by it, because at the time of issuing of the decision Y Joint Stock Company had not had a right to receive any claims from Complainant X. Moreover, Y Joint Stock Company claimed that the Inspector General had violated the procedural provisions of the Act on the Protection of Personal Data and the Code of Administrative Procedure, failed to include Art. 23 paragraph 1 point 5 of the Act, as the basis for personal data processing by X Joint Stock Company, as well as incorrectly interpreted the provisions of the Civil Code. Y Joint Stock Company did not share the Inspector General`s standpoint on the need for the preliminary issue to be considered by the Office for Competition and Consumer Protection.

After having reconsidered the case, the Inspector General for the Protection of Personal Data upheld the decision appealed against. In the opinion of the Inspector General for the Protection of Personal Data the contract of assignment of claims concluded between Y Joint Stock Company and shareholders of Z Private Partnership is incompatible with the provisions of the Civil Code, as it shaped Mr X`s rights and obligations in a way inconsistent with good practice, flagrantly violating Mr X`s interests. In consequence, this contract cannot justify a disclosure of Mr X`s personal data to shareholders of Z Private Partnership by Y Joint Stock Company. Moreover, the Inspector General for the Protection of Personal Data prohibited Y Joint Stock Company, as the controller of Mr X`s personal data, from disclosing Mr X`s personal data. This decision was appealed against with the Supreme Administrative Court by Y Joint Stock Company, and the Inspector General petitioned for this complaint to be dismissed.

After having considered the case presented the Voivodeship Administrative Court stated that the contract of assignment of claims resulting from the contract on the provision of telecommunications services which was concluded by Y Joint Stock Company shaped the consumer`s rights and obligations in a way inconsistent with good practice and flagrantly violated his interests. As regards the objection as to irrelevancy of the decision made by the Inspector General for the Protection of Personal Data after the performed assignment of claims, the Court considered this objection to be groundless.

In this state of affairs, the Voivodeship Administrative Court dismissed the complaint.