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Email: info@blackrootfinancialplanning.co.uk  |  Phone: 0800 975 0332
Email: info@blackrootfinancialplanning.co.uk  |  Phone: 0800 975 0332

Our Client Agreement

Client Agreement

Blackroot Financial Planning is a trading name of Blackroot Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, registration number 616966. The Financial Conduct Authority regulates the financial services industry in the UK and you can check our details on the Financial Services Register by visiting the FCA’s website www.fca.org.uk or by contacting the FCA on 0800 111 6768.

Our Services

Blackroot Financial Planning is able to act on your behalf in advising you on investments and non-investment insurance contracts. We offer products and services as follows:

Investments – we offer an Independent advice service. We will recommend investments based on a comprehensive and fair analysis of the market. We will place no restrictions on the investment markets we will consider before providing recommendations, unless you instruct us otherwise. We will however only make a recommendation when we know it is suitable for you.

Non-investment protection contracts – we offer non-investment protection products e.g. term assurance, income protection and critical illness from a range of insurers.

General Insurance Contracts – we offer General Insurance contracts e.g. Buildings and Contents from a range of insurers.

We will offer you an initial discussion (without charge) at which we will describe our services more fully and explain the payment options. If you decide to go ahead, we will:

• Gather and analyse personal financial information about you and your aims and objectives;
• Recommend and discuss any action we think you should take and, with your agreement, arrange relevant solutions for you.

You should be aware that investments carry varying degrees of risk and as their underlying value can fall as well as rise you may not get back the full amount invested.

We are committed to providing the highest standard of financial advice and service possible. The interests of our clients are paramount to us and to achieve this we have designed our systems and procedures to place you at the heart of our business. In doing so, we will:

• be open, honest and transparent in the way we deal with you;
• not place our interests above yours;
• communicate clearly, promptly and without unnecessary jargon;
• Seek your views and perception of our dealings with you to ensure it meets your expectations or to identify any improvements required.

Unless we notify you in writing to the contrary, we will be treating you as a “retail client” for investment business. This means that you are afforded the highest level of protection under the regulatory system and should have the right to take any complaint to the Financial Ombudsman Service.
Any advice or recommendation that we offer to you, will only be given after we have assessed your needs and considered your financial objectives and attitude to any risks that may be involved. We will also take into account any restrictions that you wish to place on the type of products you would be willing to consider.

We will confirm to you in writing the basis of our recommendations along with details of any special risks associated with the products recommended.

Full details of the products we recommend to you including, for example, the specific product features, minimum duration of the product, information on your right to cancel or whether no right to cancel exists, and any other early termination rights and penalties, will be covered in the relevant product disclosure information you will receive before conclusion of any contract.

We will issue any documentation/recommendations and any other communication to you in English (unless agreed otherwise).

We may also, on occasion, advise on other financial products which are not regulated by the FCA under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000. The Financial Services Compensation Scheme does not apply to any of these products.

With regards to investments which we have arranged for you, these will not be kept automatically under review but a review service will be offered to you. Should you decide not to take up any offer of future reviews, we may contact you in the future by means of an unsolicited promotion should we wish to contact you to discuss the relative merits of an investment or service which we feel may be of interest to you.

Investment Services & Charges

We will offer you an initial consultation at our cost. This helps us to understand your financial objectives and will confirm how we can support you in working towards these. We will also discuss the cost, and levels, of our services both initially and throughout our relationship with you.
We charge our services by way of a fee. These fees are based on a percentage of the amount you invest.
Some providers will allow our agreed fees to be deducted from your investment but where this is not possible; you are able to pay us directly for our services. Our charging structure is outlined below.
Fact-Finding and Financial Analysis:
• Gathering information on your existing financial arrangements and full personal circumstances
• Understanding your investment knowledge and attitude and tolerance towards investment risk
• Analysis of your current holdings and plans to see if they match your risk profile and situation
• Recommendation of an asset allocation that matches your risk profile and plans
• Preparation of detailed report outlining our recommendations

Our charge for this part of our service is a fixed fee of £497.50 payable on provision of the report containing our recommendations. This fee will be waived wholly or in part should you decide to implement any of our recommendations.

Implementation (Lump Sum Investments or Transfers):

Should you instruct us to implement our recommendations we will act for you in the following ways:

• Completion of any applications or changes to existing policies
• Handling of all fund and policy administration on your behalf
• Regular updates to keep you informed of progress
• Ensure all your documents are issued in line with your expectations

Fees for this part of our service are typically calculated as a percentage of the amount to be invested. These fees are applied as follows:

3% for any amount between £0 – £150,000 (subject to a minimum fee of £691.50)
2% for any amount between £150,001 and £400,000
1% above £400,001

This payment can either be taken from your investment upon receipt by the policy provider or paid directly by you. Where we receive such a payment we will waive our ‘financial review and recommendation’ fee by the same amount.

Example 1; if we arrange an investment on your behalf for £10,000 our implementation fee would be £300. As this is less than the minimum fee of £691.50 we would charge you an additional £391.50 as the balance. The total fee payable would be £691.50.

Example 2; if we arrange investments on your behalf totalling £100,000 our implementation fee would be £3,000. As this exceeds the financial analysis fee no other charges would be applied. The total fee payable would be £3,000.

Example 3; if we arrange investments on your behalf totalling £300,000 our implementation fee would be £6,000. As this exceeds the financial analysis fee no other charges would be applied. The total fee payable would be £6,000.

Implementation (Regular Savings or Investments):

Our charge for implementing a regular contribution savings or investment plan is typically based on a fixed amount. This fee will be due on commencement of the policy. On receipt of this payment we will waive our ‘financial review and recommendation’ fee. The fees are applied as follows:

New Regular ISA account £691.50
New Regular Investment Account £691.50
New Regular Personal Pension £691.50

Investment Reviews and Changes to Existing Investments:
We will discuss the full range of our on-going services during our initial consultation. These services include, but are not limited to:

• Structured reviews to give you peace of mind
• Assessment of your current circumstances and any changes to your plans that are needed
• Regular updates and information regarding your holdings
• A choice of differing levels of support depending on your needs
• On-going support with correspondence and administration issues

Details of the different levels of service are contained in our Service Proposition and Engagement document. We will agree this service separately to making any recommendations to you. Typically our fees range from 0.5% to 1% per annum and are based on the value of your investment(s) at each 12 month anniversary, and are paid monthly/annually in arrears. They can be deducted from your investments or you can pay us directly.

It should be noted that if you choose any of our ongoing review services may be subject to a minimum fee per annum of £297.50.

Where we agree to provide ongoing services you can choose to cancel this at any time by providing us with written confirmation of your decision. Payments would then cease within 7 business days or after collection of any due proportion of any period charges if later.

Insurance Commission

Similar to our investment services above, we will provide you with a personal and financial review prior to making our recommendation(s) to you. Should you accept our recommendation(s) we will arrange the implementation of this/these for you.

We do not charge a fee for our insurance and protection services as we will normally receive commission from the policy provider. You will not be subject to VAT for this service.

VAT

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

Right to Cancel

In most cases you can exercise a right to cancel by withdrawing from the contract. In general terms you will normally have a 30 day cancellation period for a life, pure protection, payment protection or pension policy and a 14 day cancellation period for all other policies.
For pure protection policies the start of the cancellation period will normally begin when you are informed that the contract has been concluded or, if later, when you have received the contractual terms and conditions. In other cases, the cancellation period will begin on the day the contract is concluded or, if later, the day on which you receive the contractual terms and conditions. Instructions for exercising the right to cancel will be contained in the relevant product disclosure information which will be issued to you.
If you cancel a single premium contract, you may be required to pay for any loss you might reasonably incur in cancelling it which is caused by market movements. This means that, in certain circumstances, you might not get back the full amount you invested if you cancel the policy.

Client Money

Blackroot Financial Planning is not permitted to handle client money and we cannot accept a cheque made out to us (unless it is in respect of an item for which we have sent you an invoice) or handle cash.

Documentation

We will endeavour to make arrangements for all your investments to be registered in your name unless you first instruct us otherwise in writing. All policy documents will be forwarded to you as soon as practicable after we receive them.

Instructions

We prefer our clients to give us instructions in writing, to aid clarification and avoid future misunderstandings. We will, however, accept oral instructions provided they are confirmed in writing.

Material Interest

We will act honestly, fairly and professionally following conducting business in ‘Client’s best interest’ regulations. Situations may arise where we or one of our other clients have some form of interest in business transacted for you. If this happens or we become aware that our interests or those of one of our other clients conflict with yours, we will write to you and obtain your consent before we carry out your instructions.

Complaints

If you wish to register a complaint, please write to us at our address above. If you cannot settle your complaint with us, you may be entitled to refer it to the Financial Ombudsman Service.

Compensation Scheme

We are covered by the Financial Services Compensation scheme (FSCS) if we cannot meet our obligations. This is dependent upon the type of business and the circumstances of the claim. Most types of investment business are covered up to a maximum limit of £50,000. Insurance advising and arranging is covered for 90% of the claim, without any upper limit. Further information about this compensation scheme arrangement is available from the FSCS.

Data Protection

The information you have provided is subject to the Data Protection Act 1998 (the “Act”). By signing this document you consent to us or any company associated with us for processing, both manually and by electronic means, your personal data for the purposes of providing advice, administration and management.
“Processing” includes obtaining, recording or holding information or data, transferring it to other companies associated with us, product providers, the FSA or any other statutory, governmental or regulatory body for legitimate purposes including, where relevant, to solicitors and/or other debt collection agencies for debt collection purposes and carrying out operations on the information or data.
The information provided may also contain sensitive personal data for the purposes of the Act, being information as to your physical or mental health or condition; the committing or alleged committing of any offence by you; any proceedings for an offence committed or alleged to have been committed by you, including the outcome or sentence in such proceedings; your political opinions, religious or similar beliefs, sexual life; or your membership of a Trade Union.
If at any time you wish us or any company associated with us to cease processing your personal data or sensitive personal data, or contacting you for marketing purposes, please contact The Data Protection Officer at our address above.
We will treat all personal data and sensitive personal data as confidential and will not process it other than for legitimate purposes. Steps will be taken to ensure that the information is accurate, kept up to date and not kept for longer than is necessary. Measures will also be taken to safeguard against unauthorised or unlawful processing and accidental loss or destruction or damage to the data.
Subject to certain exceptions, you are entitled to have access to your personal and sensitive personal data held by us. You may be charged a fee (subject to the statutory maximum) for supplying you with such data.

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 checks from time to time throughout our relationship, not just at the beginning.

Law

This client agreement is governed and shall be construed in accordance with English Law and the parties shall submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the English Courts.

Force Majeure

Blackroot Financial Planning shall not be in breach of this Agreement and shall not incur any liability to you if there is any failure to perform its duties due to any circumstances reasonably beyond its control.

Termination

The authority to act on your behalf may be terminated at any time without penalty by either party giving notice in writing to that effect, but without prejudice to the completion of transactions already initiated.