Terms of Business

This Client Agreement is issued by Rafter Associates Financial Management Ltd (RAFM Ltd) 

10th December 2015
Spring Fields, 9 Spring Hill Farm, Harborough Road, Pitsford, Northamptonshire NN6 9AA.
Our Companies House Register Number is 1978259.
 

REGULATORY STATUS

We are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).   
Our FCA Register number is 116031.

You can check this on the FCA Register by visiting the FCA website www.fsa.gov.uk/register or by Writing to: 25 The North Colonnade, Canary Wharf, London E14 5HS Telephone: 0845 606 1234
 Website: www.fca.org.uk

OUR SERVICES

We are permitted to advise on and arrange (bring about) deals in investments in authorised collective investment schemes, unit trusts, ISAs, non-investment insurance and pensions; this list is not exhaustive. For the purposes of the Client Agreement, these will be referred to as ‘products’.

WE DO NOT HANDLE CLIENTS’ MONEY.  WE NEVER ACCEPT A CHEQUE MADE PAYABLE TO US NEITHER DO WE HANDLE CASH, UNLESS IT IS PAYMENT IN SETTLEMENT OF CHARGES OR DISBURSEMENTS FOR WHICH WE HAVE SENT YOU AN INVOICE.

We offer products from the whole market for investments and pensions.

We offer a range of products based on a fair analysis of the market for protection insurances, such as, term assurance, critical illness cover, income protection and accident, sickness and unemployment cover.

We offer products from the whole market for accident, sickness and unemployment insurance and buildings and contents insurance.

We will advise you and make a recommendation to you after we have assessed your needs and objectives.

Under normal circumstances, we will confirm to you in writing the basis or our reason for recommending the transaction executed on your behalf.

We will make arrangements for all your products to be registered in your name unless you first instruct us otherwise in writing.  We will forward to you all documents showing ownership of your products 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.

SCOPE OF ADVICE

We offer independent advice, which means that we will advise you and make any recommendation after we have assessed your needs.  

CLIENT CATEGORISATION

We will categorise you as a ‘retail client’ for investment business and a ‘consumer’ for non-investment business. These client categories afford you the full protection of the regulatory system.  

If you want to be categorised differently, you should discuss this with your adviser or a member of your service team.  In such circumstances we will inform you if your circumstances indicate that you should be classified differently, for example as a professional client or an eligible counterparty. We reserve the right to arrange such a re-categorisation on a case-by-case basis and, where we agree to do so, it may mean that you will have a reduced level of regulatory protection; which might mean you lose a right of access to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS).  The FOS is the independent body that deals with complaints against financial services providers.

OBJECTIVES & RESTRICTIONS

Following the issue of this document, any subsequent advice offered to you will usually be based on your stated objectives, acceptable level of investment risk and any restrictions you wish to place on the types of products or funds you are willing to consider.  Details of your stated objectives will be identified during our discussions with you and confirmed with you.  If we identify an area that we consider requires financial planning, but you have not included it in your stated objectives, we will discuss this with you and will confirm in writing whether or not it is an area on which we are offering advice.  

We will assume that you do not want to place any restrictions on the advice we give you, unless you confirm to the contrary.

METHODS OF COMMUNICATION

We will communicate with you through whatever means are convenient to you and us, including face-to-face, telephone, email, letter, fax and other acceptable electronic communication methods, such as text messaging.

LANGUAGE

Please note that all our communications and documents will be provided to you in English.  It may be possible for us to arrange for translations, but we reserve the right to either request up front payment for this or to recover our costs from you.

BEST EXECUTION

THIS SECTION APPLIES ONLY TO CLIENTS WHO ARE TRANSACTING INVESTMENT BUSINESS.

When we feel that you are best served by placing particular business with a third party, such as, a stockbroker, the Financial Conduct Authority requires us to take all reasonable steps to provide ‘best execution’ when carrying out such transactions.  This means that we must transact your business with a view to achieving the best possible results in terms of the nature and price of the products selected, transaction charges, administration and service quality.  

Full details of our best execution arrangements are provided in our best execution policy, a copy of which is available upon request.

You or we may terminate our authority to act on your behalf at any time, without penalty.  

Notice of termination must be given in writing and takes effect from the date of receipt.  

Termination is without prejudice to any transactions already initiated, which will be completed according to the terms of the Client Agreement unless agreed otherwise in writing.

You will be liable to pay for any advice, transactions or services carried out prior to termination.  This means that, where we have agreed the advice, transactions or services that we will provide to you and we have agreed to receive payment for these, either by way of a fee for investment business or a fee or commission for insurance business, you will have to pay us for any work completed up to the date of termination.

These terms apply to termination of initial and/or ongoing advice.

RIGHT TO WITHDRAW

A right to withdraw or cancel the contract within a specified period is normally provided for many retail investment products, such as, life insurance policies, unitised collective investment schemes, open-ended investment companies, stakeholder pensions and personal pensions.  Details of such rights are ordinarily contained in the product Key Features Document but we will also confirm them to you in writing; if no such rights apply, we will confirm this in writing also.

CONFLICTS OF INTEREST

Occasions may arise where one or more of our other clients or we have some form of interest in business being transacted for you.  If this happens, or we become aware that our interests or those of one or more of our other clients conflict with your interests, we will write to you and obtain your consent before we carry out your instructions.  We will detail the steps we will take to ensure fair treatment.

PAYMENT FOR SERVICES

To ensure that you are always fully aware of our advice costs and how and when you will be asked to pay them, we will always confirm these both verbally and in writing.

We offer an initial discussion without charge, at which we will describe our services fully and explain the payment options. It will take at least one meeting to establish your current position, identify your needs, preferences and objectives and assess your attitude to risk.  This information forms the basis of your personalised financial plan, which we will discuss and agree with you prior to implementation.

Payment will usually fall due at the end of the advice process, namely, at the time that you accept our recommendations, complete applications and commit money to contracts.

Our standard charging structure is as follows:

  • Remuneration for research, planning and implementation: 3% of invested assets (new or transferred)
  • Remuneration for monitoring and review: 1% of invested assets per annum
  • This remuneration structure provides a complete portfolio management service, including a regular monitoring and review service.

We reserve the right to charge you a minimum fee of £250 if you engage our services and ask us to provide advice and/or a recommendation, with which you subsequently decide you do not want to proceed, or you terminate the relationship after we have provided advice.  This is in order to cover the costs of any initial work, research and administration and applies to any product or fund. 

The charges that you incur will depend on three factors:

  • the extent of the work carried out at inception
  • the level of service that you wish to receive now and in the future 
  • the solution you choose for investment business (if appropriate) 

You may ask us for an estimate of how much we might charge in total, but obviously it will be a best estimate and we will not be bound by this.  You may also ask us not to exceed a certain amount without checking with you first.  

INVESTMENT, SAVINGS & PENSION BUSINESS CHARGING STRUCTURE

We do not receive any payment from product providers – the entire cost for advice is borne directly by the client.  

There are two methods of payment: facilitation and separate fee.

Facilitation – this is where the provider deducts the client agreed initial fee from the amount to be invested and pays it to us; therefore, a lower amount is invested.

Separate fee – this is where the client pays the agreed fee to us separately; therefore, the full amount is invested.

Either method can be used pay the agreed ongoing fee, i.e. the provider can deduct the client agreed fee amount from the fund value and pay it to us, or the client can choose to leave the fund intact, but pay an amount directly to us via separate fee that is equal to the appropriate percentage.

FACILITATION EXAMPLE OF REMUNERATION FOR ADVICE AND A RECOMMENDATION TO INVEST A £100,000 LUMP SUM (NEW MONEY OR TRANSFER OF EXISTING FUNDS):

Initial advice fee = 3%; ongoing advice fee = 1%.  (Example percentages only; actual percentages will depend on the exact nature and complexity of the service provided, see ‘Payment for Services’ section above.)

3% of £100,000 (£3,000), is deducted by the provider from the investment and is paid to the adviser, therefore £97,000 is invested.

1/12th of 1% of £97,000 (£80.84) is deducted by the provider from the fund in the first month and is paid to the adviser. This process is repeated every month for the duration of the contract.

This means that the total fee paid by you in the first year would be £3,970.  

Please note that the monetary equivalent of the 1% ongoing advice fee will vary according to the size of the fund invested, the frequency of the remuneration paid to RAFM Ltd and fluctuation in the value of the investments during the year. The ‘total fee paid by you in the first year’ figure assumes that the fund value remains static over 12 months, which is for purposes of illustration. 

SEPARATE FEE EXAMPLE OF REMUNERATION FOR ADVICE AND A RECOMMENDATION TO INVEST A £100,000 LUMP SUM (NEW MONEY OR TRANSFER OF EXISTING FUNDS):

Initial advice fee = 3%; ongoing advice fee = 1%.  This is an example percentage only; actual percentages will depend on the exact nature and complexity of the service provided – please see the ‘Payment for Services’ section above.

3% of £100,000 (£3,000) separate fee payable to the adviser therefore £100,000 is invested.

1/12th of 1% of £100,000 (£83.33) separate fee payable to the adviser in the first month.  This process is repeated every month for the duration of the contract.

This means that the total fee paid by you in the first year would be £3,999.96.  

Please note that the monetary equivalent of the 1% ongoing advice fee will vary according to the size of the fund invested, the frequency of the remuneration paid to RAFM Ltd and fluctuation in the value of the investments during the year.

FACILITATION EXAMPLE OF REMUNERATION FOR ADVICE AND A RECOMMENDATION TO INVEST £1,000 PER MONTH:

Initial advice fee = 3%; ongoing advice fee = 1%.  (Example percentages only; actual percentages will depend on the exact nature and complexity of the service provided, see ‘Payment for Services’ section above.)

Upon investment of each monthly contribution, the provider deducts the agreed fee and pays it to the adviser; therefore a lower amount is invested each month for the duration of the contract. 

The fee includes two elements as follow:

3% of £1,000 (£30), therefore £970 is invested each month 

Over 12 months, 1% x 1/12 of the fund value per month is payable. 1/12th of 1% of £970 (£0.81) separate fee payable to the adviser in the first month.  This process is repeated every month for the duration of the contract.

This means that the total fee paid by you in the first month would be £30.81 and the total paid in the first year would be £422.86 (£360 Initial Fees + £62.85 ongoing charge).

Please note that the monetary equivalent of the 1% ongoing advice fee will vary according to the size of the monthly contribution, the frequency of the remuneration paid to RAFM Ltd and fluctuation in the value of the investments during the year. The ‘total fee paid by you in the first year’ figure assumes that the fund value remains static over 12 months, which is for purposes of illustration.

SEPARATE FEE EXAMPLE OF REMUNERATION FOR ADVICE AND A RECOMMENDATION TO INVEST £1,000 PER MONTH:

Initial advice fee = 3%; ongoing advice fee = 1%.  (Example percentages only; actual percentages will depend on the exact nature and complexity of the service provided, see ‘Payment for Services’ section above.)

3% of £1,000 (£30) separate fee payable to the adviser therefore £1,000 is invested.

Over 12 months, 1% x 1/12 of the fund value per month is payable. 1/12th of 1% of £1,000 (£0.83) separate fee payable to the adviser in the first month.  This process is repeated every month for the duration of the contract.

This means that the total fee paid by you in the first month would be £30.83 and the total paid in the first year £424.81 (£360 Initial fees + £64.81 ongoing charge).  

Please note that the monetary equivalent of the 1% ongoing advice fee will vary according to the size of the fund invested, the frequency of the remuneration paid to RAFM Ltd and fluctuation in the value of the investments during the year.

ONE-OFF COSTS

Pension Report (for Non-Existing Clients): £495

This document details what pension benefits are available within an existing Pension Scheme, together with the projected values and critical yields needed on transfer to achieve the desired growth.

The one-off costs should not be ‘bundled’ or added together for a planning review or a series of actions, as an investment alone may well mitigate any further fees for the work involved. 

INSURANCE BUSINESS CHARGING STRUCTURE

For insurance business (e.g. life insurance, income protection), we are usually remunerated by way of commission paid to us by the provider, although it is possible for us to come to a separate fee agreement or work at an hourly rate.

Prior to commencement of the recommended product, you will receive a client-specific illustration, which will detail the provider remuneration, together with any other fees and costs that relate to your product.

VAT

We are registered for VAT (our VAT registration number is 443 7526 43).  

The remuneration we receive from you, insurers and investment houses for the services we provide under the terms of this Client Agreement are normally exempt from VAT.  In certain circumstances, such as where we analyse your affairs or existing products and there is no intention to provide advice and/or a recommendation, the work we do is not subject to VAT.  Whatever the case, your adviser will confirm to you in writing if the fees are subject to VAT or not.

THESE ARE EXAMPLES AND ARE USED FOR ILLUSTRATIVE PURPOSES ONLY; THE ACTUAL AMOUNTS WILL VARY, DEPENDING ON THE INITIAL WORK CARRIED OUT, THE CHOSEN SERVICE LEVEL AND THE STRUCTURE OF THE INVESTMENT MANAGEMENT.

WE RESERVE THE RIGHT TO ALTER OUR FEES AT ANY POINT IN THE FUTURE.  IF THIS HAPPENS, WE WILL INFORM YOU IN WRITING AT THE EARLIEST OPPORTUNITY.  YOU WILL BE FREE TO WITHDRAW FROM THIS CLIENT AGREEMENT WITHOUT PENALTY IF YOU DO NOT AGREE THAT THE REVISED BASIS IS FAIR OR YOU DEEM IT PROHIBITIVELY EXPENSIVE.

WHAT TO DO IF YOU HAVE A COMPLAINT

If you wish to register a complaint, please contact us as follows:

Write to: Mr Neil Rafter (the Compliance Officer) at the address given above 
Telephone: 01604 889073
Email: enquiries@rafterassociates.co.uk

Alternatively, you can register your complaint with any member of staff, who will pass it to the Compliance Officer to deal with. If you cannot settle your complaint with us, you may be entitled to refer it to the Financial Ombudsman Service http://www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk/.  We will inform you if this is the case.

ARE WE COVERED BY THE FINANCIAL SERVICES COMPENSATION SCHEME (FSCS)?

We are covered by the FSCS.  You may be entitled to compensation from the FSCS if we cannot meet our obligations.  Compensation depends on the type of business and the circumstances of the claim.  The compensation limits are as follow:

Investments (provision and mediation) –100% of the first £50,000
Non-compulsory insurance (provision and mediation) – 90% of the claim, with no upper limit
Compulsory insurance (provision and mediation) – 100% with no upper limit
Cash deposits (for claims against firms declared in default from 31st December 2010) – 100% of £85,000 per person per firm. Different limits apply to claims made against firms that were declared in default prior to 31st December 2010 and you should check with your adviser or the FSCS for details

Further information is available from the FSCS, whom you can contact as follows:

     Write to: 7th Floor, Lloyds Chambers, Portsoken Street, London, E1 8BN
     Telephone: 0800 678 1100 or 0207 741 4100
     Fax: 0207 892 7301
     Email: enquiries@fscs.org.uk
     Website: www.fscs.org.uk
 

DATA PROTECTION

We are bound by the terms of the Data Protection Act, which regulates the processing of personal data.  Our responsibilities are extensive and are described in the Data Protection Notice, which your adviser will go through with you.  Please note that we are unable to process your data without your consent, which means that we would be unable to do business with you.

CLIENT CONSENT

This is our standard Client Agreement upon which we intend to rely.

For your own benefit and protection, you should read these terms carefully.  If you do not understand any point, please ask for further information. The Client Agreement will come into effect immediately.