While entering into a deal with a client, you automatically become in charge of keeping their confidential information private. If the client trusts you enough to disclose some of their private information, they expect you to respect their privacy and keep the information that they share with you private. At times, they may require you to sign a client confidentiality agreement to make sure that the privacy of their sensitive information is maintained. After which you become legally liable to keep their secret.
What is Client Confidentiality?
Client confidentiality is very crucial when it comes to handling confidential information about a specific individual or a client. It is a principle that helps keep an institution from divulging any confidential information about a client to other people or third parties without the approval or consent of the client. It is specifically practiced by medical care practitioners and other people who handle critical patient information. By maintaining client confidentiality, the mentioned bodied gain trust from the people, making them continue offering their services in the long run.
How Valuable Is Client Confidentiality?
Several client confidentiality agreements have been breached over the years, which have been reported to various organizations, and penalties have been served as well. Still, the damage that is brought about by such breaches cannot be easily compensated by money or any material compensation. This is how valuable client confidentiality is.
Sensitive client information about an individual’s health must be handled with utmost care. Without a client confidentiality agreement, medical practitioners can easily disclose the condition or illness that their clients have. This is very critical, especially for those who have communicable diseases
Consequently, if a client confesses to a priest, they expect that their information is kept a secret. Confessing about stealing your neighbor’s bike can easily land you in jail if only the priest fails to follow the confidentiality agreement.
How to Draft a Client Confidentiality Agreement
A client confidentiality agreement contains information about both parties involved in a deal, the kind of information that both parties are looking to ensure that it remains private. To help guide you in the different clauses to include in your confidentiality agreement, check out our basic confidentiality agreement, which also has a standard template for use when designing yours.
Before designing such agreements, however, you need first to seek legal advice from professionals to make sure that all the information is properly covered in the agreement.
When is a Client Confidentiality Agreement Used?
- When hiring a contractor: if you are a contractor and you have been tasked with building something for a client, you may gain access to some confidential information that the client would like to have disclosed to the public. By signing a client confidentiality agreement, you are legally bound not to disclose any such information.
- When sharing private information with a consultant: Clients usually go to consultants with different types of challenges in their life, including their business, mental or physical health, relationship, career, etc. As a consultant, you have to give them the advice they need depending on their situation. However, you should not divulge their private information to anyone. You may be required to sign a client confidentiality agreement with your client to ensure that their confidential information is safe.
- When revealing your confidential information to an advocate: People or businesses normally disclose confidential information with their advocates and trust that such information will not be disclosed to anyone without their consent. With a client confidentiality agreement, you are making sure that your clients and that their information shall be kept as private and will not be disclosed to any other party without the consent of the client
- When sharing sensitive physical information with a physician: if you are a physician, you are also responsible for keeping your client’s physical information private and confidential. Even if you are looking to use the information for health-related research or study, you should not reveal the patient’s name and any personal details. With a client confidentiality agreement, you can become accountable for keeping your client’s information secret
Benefits of a Client Confidentiality Agreement
- A client confidentiality agreement helps in building and maintaining trust between a client and any other party involved. This, sequentially, results in a long and good working relationship
- The agreement helps build trust between the service provider and the client
- The agreement helps keep confidential information off-limits to people who should not know about it.
- A client confidentiality agreement helps clients to feel at ease disclosing personal information to professional medical care practitioners because they know that their confidential information will be well maintained
- The agreement clearly highlights the consequences of the breach of agreement
Client confidentiality is just but a way of building trust between the client and the service provider. After both parties sign the agreement, they agree to work together with a more open mind. For more information on how to draft you’re a confidentiality agreement, you can check out our basic confidentiality agreement that also has a sample you can customize as per your requirements and use it to safeguard your client’s privacy.
Free Templates & Samples
Frequently Asked Questions
Is It Mandatory To Sign A Confidentiality Agreement?
There are often genuine reasons why your client may request that you enter into a confidentiality agreement with them. Such agreements are usually used to prevent commercially sensitive information from being divulged inappropriately.
There is no blanket prohibition on anyone signing a confidentiality agreement, but you should take particular care before doing so, and it may even be necessary to do so.
Why Is It Important To Maintain Client Confidentiality?
Client confidentiality helps in building and maintaining trust between the client and any other parties involved, which in turn leads to a long ad good relationship.
It also allows the parties to feel at ease sharing confidential information because they know that their data will be kept safe.