GDPR Software

What is “Lawful Basis”?

There must be a valid lawful basis in order to process personal data.

There are six available lawful bases for processing. No single basis is ’better’ or more important than the others – which basis is most appropriate to use will depend on your purpose and relationship with the individual.

The six lawful bases for processing are set out in Article 6 of the GDPR. At least one of these must apply whenever personal data is processed:          

  1. Consent: the individual has given clear consent for you to process their personal data for a specific purpose.
  2. Contract: the processing is necessary for a contract you have with the individual, or because they have asked you to take specific steps before entering into a contract.
  3. Legal obligation: the processing is necessary for you to comply with the law (not including contractual obligations).
  4. Vital interests: the processing is necessary to protect someone’s life.
  5. Public task: the processing is necessary for you to perform a task in the public interest or for your official functions, and the task or function has a clear basis in law.
  6. Legitimate interests: the processing is necessary for your legitimate interests or the legitimate interests of a third party unless there is a good reason to protect the individual’s personal data which overrides those legitimate interests. (This cannot apply if you are a public authority processing data to perform your official tasks.

For more detail on each lawful basis, read the relevant page of Regulation (EU) 2016/679 of the European Parliament and of the Council.