THESE TERMS OF BUSINESSS INCLUDING SCHEDULE OF FEES & CHARGES ARE VALID FROM 12TH MARCH 2021 UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE

CLARITY MANAGEMENT LTD TRADING AS U CONSULTING

These Terms of Business including Schedule of Fees & Charges set out the general terms and basis upon which U Consulting will provide business services to you.  They also contain details of our regulatory and statutory obligations and the respective duties and responsibilities of both the firm and you in relation to such services.  This is an important document so please read these terms thoroughly and if you have any queries we will be happy to clarify them.  We will notify you should there be any material changes to the information in this document.

OUR CONTACT DETAILS

U Consulting, 10B Abbey Street, Ballyhaunis, Co Mayo e info@uconsulting.ie t +35394 9631853 w www.uconsulting.ie

AUTHORISED STATUS WITH THE CENTRAL BANK OF IRELAND

Clarity Management Ltd trading as U Consulting is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland as an Investment Intermediary under the Investment Intermediaries Act 1995 and as an Insurance Intermediary registered under the European Communities (Insurance Distribution) Regulations, 2018.  The Central Bank of Ireland holds registers of regulated firms.  Our Central Bank registration number is C122418.  Copies of our regulatory authorisations are available on request.  You may contact the Central Bank of Ireland on 1890 777 777 or alternatively visit their website at www.centralbank.ie to verify our credentials.

STATUTORY CODES OF CONDUCT

Clarity Management Ltd trading as U Consulting is subject to the Consumer Protection Code, Minimum Competency Code and Fitness & Probity Standards.  These codes offer protection to consumers and can be found on the Central Bank of Ireland website www.centralbank.ie

OUR SERVICES

U Consulting is a member of Brokers Ireland

Our principal business is to provide advice and arrange transactions on behalf of clients in relation to Life, Pensions, Savings and Investments.  A full list of Insurers and Product Producers with which we deal with is available upon request by emailing info@uconsulting.ie

Insurance Intermediary Services (except for Insurance Based Investment Products)

U Consulting acts as a Broker which means that 

  1. a) the principal regulated activities of the firm are provided on the basis of a fair and personal analysis of the market. 
  2. b) you have the option to pay in full for our services by means of a fee

Fair and Personal Analysis

The concept of fair and personal analysis describes the extent of the choice of products and providers offered by an intermediary within a particular category of life assurance, general insurance, mortgages and or a specialist area.  The number of contracts and providers considered must be sufficiently large to enable an intermediary to recommend a product that would be adequate to meet a clients’ needs.  The number of providers that constitutes ‘sufficiently large’ will vary depending on the number of providers operating in the market for a particular product or service and their relative importance in and share of that market.  The extent of fair analysis must be such that could be reasonably expected of a professional conducting business taking into account, the accessibility of information and product placement to intermediaries and the cost of the search.  

In order to ensure that the number of contracts and providers is sufficiently large to constitute a fair and personal analysis of the market, we will consider the following criteria:

  • the needs of the customer,
  • the size of the customer order,
  • the number of providers in the market that deal with brokers
  • the market share of each of those providers,
  • the number of relevant products available from each provider,
  • the availability of information about the products,
  • the quality of the product and service provided by the provider,
  • cost, and 
  • any other relevant consideration.

Investment Intermediary Services (IIA firms providing Article 3 services)

We are remunerated by commission for our investment intermediary services

Insurance Based Investment Products 

We are remunerated by commission for the advice we provide on our insurance based investment products.

Life & Pensions/Deposits & Life Wrapped Investments 

U Consulting provides Life Assurance and Pensions on a fair and personal analysis basis i.e. providing services on the basis of a sufficiently large number of contracts and product producers available on the market to enable us to make a recommendation, in accordance with professional criteria, regarding which contract would be adequate to meet the your needs. 

We will provide assistance to you for any queries you may have in relation to the policies or in the event of a claim during the life of the policies and we will explain to you the various restrictions, conditions and exclusions attached to your policy. However, it is your responsibility to read the policy documents literature and brochures to ensure that you understand the nature of the policy cover particularly in relation to PHI and serious illness policies.

Specifically on the subject of permanent health insurance policies it is our policy to explain to you a) the meaning of disability as defined in the policy; b) the benefits available under the policy; c) the general exclusions that apply to the policy; and d) the reductions applied to the benefit where there are disability payments from other sources. 

For a serious illness policy, we will explain clearly to you the restrictions, conditions and general exclusions that attach to that policy.

SUSTAINABILITY

Taking due account of the size, nature and scale of our activities when providing Investment Advice and Insurance Based Investment advice we will not consider the adverse impacts of investment decisions on sustainability factors.  We will review this approach annually.

STATEMENT OF CHARGES

U Consulting is remunerated by commissions paid by the product providers for whom we hold written agencies in order to arrange life insurance, pensions, savings and investments etc.  A fee, commission and any other type of remuneration, including a non-monetary benefit or on the basis of a combination of these methods.  A non-monetary benefit will only be accepted if it enhances the quality of the service to our clients.  Where we receive recurring commission, this forms part of the remuneration for initial advice provided.   

  • By commission earned and other payments from product producers or lenders on the completion of business.  Summary details of these payments will be included in a product information document which you will receive from us and the Insurer/Product Producer, and/or
  • By the Investment Manager as a shared management fee deducted from your investment, and/or
  • By you – you may choose to pay in full for our services by means of a fee which we will discuss and agree in advance of all transactions.  Where we receive recurring commission, this forms part of the remuneration for initial advice provided

Fee Table for Advisory and Financial Planning Services

Fees may be charged on an hourly rate and or on a project basis.  This will always be discussed in advance and agreed in writing in advance of any work being undertaken on a client’s behalf.

Professional Advisor Professional Fee (Hourly Rate Ex VAT)
Directors €150
Certified Financial Planners/Qualified Financial Advisers €100
Support Staff €65

(It is common to distinguish on the basis of the seniority of the person and between advisers and support staff.)

In certain circumstances additional fees may be payable for complex cases to reflect expertise or urgency.  The basic hourly rate as outlined may be subject to change should this occur, however, we will notify you in writing in advance and agree the scale of fees to be charged if different from fees outlined above.  

If we receive commission from a product producer, this may/will be offset against the fee which we will charge you.  Where the commission is greater than the fee due, the commission may become the amount payable to the firm unless an arrangement to the contrary is made.  

Prior to undertaking any business dealings on your behalf, we will outline the charging structure which applies to the plan recommended.  If you have any queries in relation to the charging structure please ask your adviser for further information.  

Professional fees are non-refundable in the event that a policy is cancelled. 

A summary of the details of all arrangements for any fee, commission other reward or remuneration paid or provided to us which have agreed with product producers is available on our website at www.uconsulting.ie

ONGOING SUITABILITY

Complex Investment Instruments (MiFID*)

Ongoing suitability assessments form part of the service to clients.  On an annual basis the firm will issue a client report outlining changes in the services or instruments involved and/or the circumstances of the client.  [*Markets in Financial Instruments Directive] 

Insurance Based Investment Products 

We will provide periodic assessments of the suitability of the insurance based investment product which we have recommended to you.

REGULAR REVIEWS

It is in your best interests that you review, on a regular basis, the products which we have arranged for you.  As your circumstances change, your needs will change.  You must advise us of those changes and request a review of the relevant policy so that we can ensure that you are provided with up to date advice and products best suited to your needs.  Failure to contact us in relation to changes in your circumstances or failure to request a review, may result in you having insufficient insurance cover and/or inappropriate investments.

DISCLOSURE OF INFORMATION

It is your responsibility to provide complete and accurate information to Insurers/Product Producers when arranging a policy.  Any failure to disclose material information may invalidate your claim and render your policy void.

CONFLICTS OF INTEREST

It is the policy of our firm to avoid conflicts of interest in providing services to you.  However, where an unavoidable conflict of interest arises we will advise you of this in writing before providing you with any service.  A copy of our Conflict of Interest policy is available on request.

DEFAULT ON PAYMENTS BY CLIENTS

Our firm will exercise its legal rights to receive payments due to it from clients for services provided.  Insurers/Product Producers may withdraw benefits or cover in the event of default on payments due under policies of insurance or other products arranged for you.  We would refer to policy documents or product terms for the details of such provisions. 

NEW CONSUMER RESPONSIBILITIES ARISING OUT OF THE CONSUMER INSURANCE
CONTRACTS ACTS 2019 WHICH WAS IMPLEMENTED TO PROTECT CONSUMERS.

New Business & Renewal

If you have taken out a life insurance contract, you may cancel the contract by giving notice in writing
to us within 30 days after the date you were informed the contract is on cover.
The giving of notice of cancellation by you will have the effect of releasing you from any further
obligation arising from the contract of insurance. The insurer cannot impose any costs on you other
than the cost of the premium for the period of cover.
This right to cancel does not apply where, in respect of life insurance the contract is for a duration of
six months or less, or in respect of general insurance, the duration of the contract is less than one
month.
You are under a duty to pay your premium within a reasonable time, or otherwise in accordance with
the terms of the contract of insurance.
A court of competent jurisdiction can reduce the pay-out to you if you are in breach of your duties
under the Act, in proportion to the breach involved.

Post-Contract Stage and Claims

An insurer may refuse a claim made by you under a contract of insurance where there is a change in
the risk insured, including as described in an “alteration of risk” clause, and the circumstances have
so changed that it has effectively changed the risk to one which the insurer has not agreed to cover.
Any clause in a contract of insurance that refers to a “material change” will be interpreted as being a
change that takes the risk outside what was in the reasonable contemplation of the contracting
parties when the contract was concluded.
You must cooperate with the insurer in an investigation of insured events including responding to
reasonable requests for information in an honest and reasonably careful manner and must notify the
insurer of the occurrence of an insured event in a reasonable time.
You must notify the insurer of a claim within a reasonable time, or otherwise in accordance with the
terms of the contract of insurance.
If you become aware after a claim is made of information that would either support or prejudice the
claim, you are under a duty to disclose it.  (The insurer is under the same duty).
If you make a false or misleading claim in any material respect (and know it to be false or misleading
or consciously disregards whether it is) the insurer is entitled to refuse to pay and to terminate the
contract.
Where an insurer becomes aware that a consumer has made a fraudulent claim, they may notify the
consumer advising that they are voiding the contract of insurance, and it will be treated as being
terminated from the date of the submission of the fraudulent claim.  The insurer may refuse all
liability in respect of any claim made after the date of the fraudulent act, and the insurer is under no
obligation to return any of the premiums paid under the contract.

CANCELLATION

You, the customer can cancel your policy at any time by giving notice in writing subject to the terms and conditions of the applicable policy.

COMPLAINTS

Whilst we are happy to receive verbal complaints, it would be preferable that any complaints are made in writing.  Where possible any complaint should be addressed in writing to Brian Flanagan.

We will acknowledge your complaint within 5 business days and we will fully investigate it.  We shall investigate the complaint as swiftly as possible, and, the complainant will receive an update, from a nominated individual within our firm, on the complaint at intervals of not greater than 20 business days starting from the date on which the complaint was made.  On completion of our investigation, we will provide you with a written report of the outcome.  In the event that you are still dissatisfied with our handling of or a response to your complaint, you are entitled to refer the matter to the Financial Services & Pensions Ombudsman, Lincoln House, Lincoln Place, Dublin 2, D02VH29, (01 5677000 or info@fspo.ie).  A full copy of our complaints procedure is available on request. 

DATA PROTECTION

U Consulting complies with the requirements of the General Data Protection Regulation 2018 and the Irish Data Protection Act 2018.  U Consulting are committed to protecting and respecting your privacy.  We wish to be transparent on how we process your data and show you that we are accountable with the GDPR in relation to not only processing your data but ensuring you understand your rights as a client.  

The data will be processed only in ways compatible with the purposes for which it was given and as outlined in our Data Privacy Notice, which will be given to all clients at the time of data collection.  We will ensure that this Privacy Notice is easily accessible.  Please refer to our website www.uconsulting.ie  Please contact us at info@uconsulting.ie if you have any concerns about your personal data.

COMPENSATION SCHEME

We are members of the Investor Compensation Scheme operated by the Investor Compensation Company Ltd.  See below for details.

Investor Compensation Scheme

The Investor Compensation Act 1988, provides for the establishment of a compensation scheme and the payment, in certain circumstances, of compensation to certain clients (known as eligible investors) of authorized investment firms, as defined in the Act.  

The Investor Compensation Company Ltd. (ICCL) was established under the 1988 Act to operate such a compensation scheme and U Consulting is a member of this scheme.  Compensation may be payable where money or investment instruments owed or belonging to clients and held, administered or managed by the firm cannot be returned to those clients for the time being and where there is no reasonably foreseeable opportunity of the firm being able to do so.  

A right to compensation will arise only:

  • If the client is an eligible investor as defined in the Act; and 
  • If it transpires that the firm is not in a position to return client money or investment instruments owned or belonging to the clients of the firm; and
  • To the extent that the client’s loss is recognized for the purpose of the Act.

Where an entitlement to compensation is established, the compensation payable will be the lesser of:

  • 90% of the amount of the client’s loss which is recognised for the purposes of the Investor Compensation Act 1988; or
  • Compensation of up to €20,000

For further information, contact the Investor Compensation Company Ltd (01 2244955)

Brokers Ireland Compensation Fund

We are also members of the Brokers Ireland Compensation Fund.  Subject to the rules of the scheme the liabilities of its members firms up to a maximum of €100,000 per client (or €250,000 in aggregate) may be discharged by the fund on its behalf if the member firm is unable to do so, where the above detailed Investor Compensation Scheme has failed to adequately compensate any client of the member.  Further details are available on request.