RE: DPA & Illegal Immigrants by Ibrahim - written 14/01/2008 08:28:24
Hi Phil

Section 29 gives you a discretion to disclose not a duty to disclose. So its up to you.

The Police may well get a court order if you refuse to disclose relevant information.

However there may be immigration legislation which places a legal obligation on you to discose. I am not sure about this and you may need to speak to an immigration/criminal lawyer. I suggest Ilyas Bulbulia of IBA solicitors who is an expert in this area. Please see

Phil Rogers wrote (11/01/2008 12:12:50):

Hi Ibrahim,

Given that Section 29 of the Data Protection Act gives organisations like mine (NHS Trust) discretion whether or not to release information we have about patients to the Police during the invesigation of a serious crime such as murder where do we stand with regard to informing the authorities, Police, Home Office etc, if we discover that one of our in-patients is an illegal immigrant?

What legal obligations do we have taking into account all other relevant factors?

Many thanks