Client Agreement 

 

This agreement details how we will conduct business with you and on your behalf. Please review the content carefully as it is an important document, and contact us if you are unsure as to any of the terms outlined.

The terms of this Agreement apply immediately upon your acceptance (implied or actual), and will remain in force until cancelled by us or you, or replaced by a later version.

This should be read in conjunction with the Client Fee Agreement and the Service Proposition and Engagement Agreement, which detail the charges proposed for any service to be provided prior to work toward delivery of such service being undertaken.

 

Our Regulatory Status

Arthur Dodds and Company Limited (“the firm” or “we”) is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (“the FCA”) under number 760570 - https://www.fca.org.uk/firms/financial-services-register

 

The Range of Our Services

Our firm is independent and acts on your behalf as your agent.  We are therefore able to provide unbiased unrestricted advice on retail investment products based on a comprehensive and fair analysis of the market.

We are permitted to give advice on retail investments (for example pensions and investments) and non investment insurance products (for example term assurance, income protection insurance and critical illness assurance) from a range of insurers and arrange transactions in these products. 

For retail investment products, this will include not just packaged products, but also structured products, all investment trusts and any other investments that offers exposure to underlying assets, but in a packaged form which modifies that exposure compared with direct holding in the financial asset.

For non-investment protection contracts we are an intermediary and will act on your behalf when providing advice and making our personal recommendations to you. We do this based on a fair and personal analysis of insurers for term assurance, income protection, critical illness.

Unless advised to the contrary we will assume that you do not wish to place any restrictions on the breadth of advice that we provide. We will outline in our recommendations whether our advice takes into account all of your financial circumstances, or whether it is restricted to a particular area or areas at your request.

 

Our Process

In order to deliver financial solutions suitable for your needs, we will seek to:

  • Gather all required information to assess your needs.  This will detail your current circumstances, your goals and objectives, acceptable levels of investment risk and any restrictions you wish to place on the type of policies you are willing to consider along with any ethical considerations you may have.  No fee will be charged by us for this stage of our advice process.  
  • Consider the level of investment risk that is appropriate, taking account of:

                     Your overall attitude to investment risk.

                     Your likely investment time horizon.

                     Required return to meet objectives.

                     Your capacity for loss. 

  • Research the market to source financial products that are most appropriate for your requirements
  • Present our recommendations in written format
  • Forward all documents showing ownership of your investments or policies as soon as practicable after we receive them.

 

Your Status as a Client

Unless we advise you to the contrary (and you accept alternative classification), we will classify you in accordance with FCA rules as a “Retail Client” in regard to an pension or investment related recommendations that we may seek to make. This affords the highest level of regulatory protection available.  You will be classified as a “consumer” in regard to general insurance business.

 

Your Instructions to Us

We ordinarily require instruction for execution of a given transaction to be in writing. Where an instruction is given verbally, we will ask you to follow up this request in writing, either manually or electronically.

If we assist in the completion of any application forms you will be fully responsible for the completeness and accuracy entered on such forms.

We may accept instruction from, and give information to, third parties where you have confirmed in writing that we may do so. We cannot accept responsibility for errors in information supplied by third parties.

Where you are a Director, Trustee, or an officer of any trust, corporation or LLP requiring advice you warrant to us that you have full authority to act on behalf of the entity you represent, and that there are no limitations to the advice we are to provide of which we have not been made aware. We will not be responsible for advising on compliance with your trustee, director or officer obligations.

You will remain responsible for any instructions given by a person whom you have advised us is authorised to give such instructions.

We are entitled to treat an instruction as genuine if we believe in good faith that such an instruction was is from you or a party authorised by you and there are no circumstances of which we are aware or should reasonably be aware that cast doubt on the authenticity of such instruction.

We reserve the right to refuse to act on an instruction if it is unclear, might break a law, regulation code or other duty that applies to us, or that is given by an unauthorised party.

You are responsible for checking upon receipt any confirmation of transaction sent to you, or statement sent to you, and to contact us without undue delay if you think that it is inconsistent with your instructions or consider any inaccuracies to be present.

 

Paying for Our Services

There are two stages to our financial planning process, each of which is separately costed:

Initial:           Researching, Reporting and Implementation of Recommendations

Review:         Ongoing advice and service (addressed under a separate agreement)

For the initial process we will agree with you the basis of any charging to be applied and a likely cost before undertaking any chargeable work on your behalf. No fee is charged for Factfinding as defined earlier in this Agreement, and where this is not the case we will advise accordingly in advance of undertaking such work.

 

Initial Process, By Fee As a percentage of funds invested:

Where we propose to charge based on a percentage of funds to be invested, we charge a maximum fee of 3% for researching, reporting and placement of new investments (lump sum or transfers from other pensions or investment providers).  This fee will be reduced to 2% for investments over £250k and 1% for investments over £500k, for example an investment of £ 650k will generate a fee of £14k:

 

Worked Example – Initial Fee for an Investment Amount of £650k

 

%

£

Investment up to £250k

3%

£ 7,500

Investment from £251k - £500K

2%

£ 5,000

Investment above £500k, ie £150k 

1%

£ 1,500

Total Fee  

2.155%

£14,000

 

Under current legislation our services are not subject to VAT but should this change in the future, and where VAT becomes due, we will notify you before conducting and charging for any further work.

 

Initial Process, By Fee, based on time charging:

Where we propose to charge on a time basis we will in the first instance and before undertaking any chargeable work on your behalf seek to provide an estimate of the time likely to be required to complete a given piece of work on your behalf, and the approximate cost involved. Where additional costs are likely to be significantly higher than our initial estimate, we will contact you to obtain your agreement to continue working on your behalf before you incur further cost.

 

Our hourly rates are as follows:

Director / Adviser:                                            £   165 per hour

Technical Research / Para planning:        £   75 per hour

General Administration:                                £   40 per hour

 

As an example a 1 hour meeting with an Adviser, 2 hours of technical research and 2 hours of administration would equate to a fee of £395.

You may wish to set a fee limit that cannot be exceeded without reference to you and should advise us if this is the case. 

Under current legislation our services are not subject to VAT but should this change in the future, and where VAT becomes due, we will notify you before conducting and charging for any further work.

 

Fee Payment

We require payment in full for any work we have undertaken within 30 days of completion of such work.

You may elect to pay us in either of the following ways:

  • Directly through invoicing, or
  • By instructing payment to our firm through a chosen investment product provider.

When fees are paid through investments rather than directly this may have the effect of reducing certain tax thresholds and exemption levels. Where this is the case we will raise the matter in any report that we provide.

 

Regular Savings Plans

Our charge for implementing a regular contribution savings or investment plan is 33.33% of first year contributions, subject to a minimum fee of £250. 

You can pay this directly through invoicing on the commencement of the policy or by instructing payment to our firm through your chosen investment product provider, if the level of premiums are sufficient.

Example premium £100pm x 12 = £1200 x 33.33% = £400. If paid through the product provider this will be paid at £33.33 per month.

Should you decide to pay this charge through your policy and payments to your policy subsequently cease, we will calculate the total payments received to date and issue an invoice to you for any outstanding balance.

 

Pure Protection Products

In the event that you purchase a protection or insurance product with no investment component we will be paid by way of a commission payment from the relevant product provider.

Any commission paid to us forms part of a “product charge” which you pay when you purchase the product and on an ongoing basis.

The amount of commission we are due to receive for sale of a protection product will be dependent upon product type, premium and proposed policy duration. Commission shall however be clearly disclosed before you are invited to apply for cover.

As an example, a term life and critical illness assurance policy over a 10 year term would typically generate commission to our firm of £670 based on a monthly premium of £37 per month, earned over the first four years of the term of the Plan, with commission of £0.93 per month payable thereafter to the end of the policy term.

 

Protection for you as a consumer:

 

Handling your money

We do not handle client’s money.  We never accept a cheque made out to us (unless it is a cheque in settlement of our fees or other charges or disbursements for which we have sent you an invoice). We do not handle cash.

Cheques for payment will be required to be paid direct to the insurance provider.

 

Accounting to You

We will communicate with you in English. We will make arrangements for all your investments/contracts to be registered in your name unless you first instruct us otherwise in writing. 

You have a right to inspect copies of any records that we hold on file relevant to advice that we have given you. We reserve the right to give you copies of such documents rather than access to the original records.

We will forward to you all documents showing ownership of your policies as soon as practicable after we receive them.  Where a number of documents relating to a series of transactions is involved, we will normally hold each document until the series is complete and then forward them to you.

 

Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS)

If you make a complaint and we are unable to meet our liabilities, you may be entitled to compensation from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme. Investment business will normally be covered up to a maximum of £50,000.

Further information about these amounts and limits for all other product types are available from the FSCS at http://www.fscs.org.uk/what-we-cover/products

 

Complaints

If you wish to complain about advice we have provided or a product you have purchased on our advice, please contact the Compliance Officer, Arthur Dodds & Co Ltd, Unit 3 Wallace Studios, 27 Wallace Avenue, Lisburn, BT27 4AE, Tel 02892 640730. Full details of our internal complaints procedures are available upon request.

If, following subsequent investigation and response to your complaint, you are still not satisfied, you may contact the Financial Ombudsman Service by writing to South Quay Plaza, 183 Marsh Wall, London E14 9SR, or at www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk. They may also be contacted by phone on 0800 0234567.

 

Cancellation Rights

If you have proposed to start an investment, pension or protection policy, you will ordinarily have a statutory right to cancel the arrangement within a given time period. This will be detailed in writing following any recommendations made.

 

Material Interests

We are not connected to any product provider, but occasions can arise where we, or one of our other customers, will have some form of interest in business which we are transacting for you. If this happens, or we become aware that our interests or those of one of our other customers conflict with your interests, we will inform you in writing and obtain your consent before we carry out your instructions. There may be occasions when we will be unable to act for one of the parties.

As a consequence of such potential conflicts arising, we have put arrangements in place to ensure our clients are treated fairly.  We also have a “Conflicts of Interest” policy, which you may access on request.

 

Data Protection

We comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and are registered with the Information Commissioner’s Office.  Please refer to our Privacy Notice page for additional information.

 

Anti-Money laundering

We are required by the anti-money laundering regulations to verify the identity of our clients, to obtain information as to the purpose and nature of the business which we conduct on their behalf, and to ensure that the information we hold is up-to-date. For this purpose we may use electronic identity verification systems and we may conduct these checks from time to time throughout our relationship, not just at the beginning. Applications may be delayed until adequate verification of identity has been obtained.

 

Termination of authority

You or we may terminate our authority to act on your behalf at any time without penalty. Notice of this termination must be given in writing and will take effect from the date of receipt. Termination is without prejudice to any transactions already initiated which will be completed according to this client agreement unless otherwise agreed in writing. You will be liable to pay for any transactions made prior to termination and any fees which may be outstanding.

 

Governing law & jurisdiction

We reserve the right to amend this client agreement at our discretion where changes in regulation or law necessitate by giving you notice in writing.  You will also be given the option to accept our new agreements or terminate our authority. This client agreement shall be governed by and construed according to the law in Northern Ireland. Any disputes shall be determined in the jurisdiction of the Northern Ireland Courts.

 

 

 

Download here: 
Client Agreement