Terms of Business
Terms of Business
The following sets out the Term of Business for PFP Financial Services Limited (trading as SmartQuotes). Please ensure that you read these terms thoroughly and if you have any queries we will be happy to clarify them. Any changes to our Terms of Business will be updated on the website.
Authorisation with the Central Bank of Ireland
PFP Financial Services Limited (trading as SmartQuotes) (“The Company”) is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland as a Multi Agency Intermediary under Section 10 of the Investment Intermediaries Act 1995 (as amended). The company is also registered as an Insurance Intermediary under the Insurance Mediation Regulations 2005. The Company is also regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland as a Mortgage Intermediary under the Consumer Credit Act, 1995. Copies of our authorisations are available on request by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. The Central Bank of Ireland holds registers of regulated companies. You may contact the Central Bank of Ireland on 1890 777777 or alternatively visit their website at www.centralbank.ie to verify our credentials. The company complies with the Consumer Protection Code, Minimum Competency Requirement and Fitness & Probity Standards, which offers protection to consumers. The Codes can be found on the Central Bank’s website www.centralbank.ie
The company provides financial planning advice and/or insurance, investment and pension advice. Any advice or recommendations that we offer will be based on your stated objectives and circumstances and takes into account any restrictions that you wish to have in place. We will confirm to you in writing the basis of our reasons for recommending any financial products.
The website offers Life Insurance, Mortgage Life Insurance (also known as Mortgage Protection) Specified Illness Cover and Income Protection quotations. The website provides quotes based on the lowest cost provider from the providers with whom we hold agency appointments.
The website also offers Wedding Insurance, Travel Insurance and Home Insurance (see below). All quotes from the online calculators are indicative (see below – Online Calculators Terms and Conditions of Use). For Protection Products all quotations are subject to underwriting. 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 Life Insurance (including Mortgage Life Insurance), Specified Illness Cover and Income Protection products.
The Company provides its services on a fair 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 your needs. The company does not have any ‘tied’ relationships with any institutions that would compromise our ability to offer you impartial advice and choice. The Company is a member of the Professional Insurance Brokers Association (PIBA) and Trusted Advisor Group (TAG).
Life Insurance and Protection Products
The Company receives commission and other payments in respect of business going through the SmartQuotes.ie website from insurers in the case of Protection product contracts. The normal annual premium for the first year only may be reduced by the percentage shown on the website and is paid by way of a commission rebate in respect of Life Insurance (including Mortgage Life Insurance) and Specified Illness Cover (see below).
How does the rebate work?
We are paid a commission for acting as intermediary and our first year’s discount is a rebate of part of that commission with you. For Life Insurance (including Mortgage Life Insurance) and Specified Illness Cover where policies are paid monthly we will refund 50% of the first twelve months’ premiums. The first of these rebates will be sent 30 days after the policy issues and monthly thereafter for 12 months in total. This rebate will cease after 12 payments have been made. This results in a net cost to you of 50% of the normal monthly premium for the first twelve months.
Where the term of the policy is less than 10 years no rebate will apply. Where policies are paid yearly no rebate will apply. It should be noted that if the policy is terminated within the first twelve months (by way of cancellation or non-payment of premium) the commission rebate is refundable SmartQuotes.ie (a trading name of PFP Financial Services Limited (trading as SmartQuotes)) in full. Where a client changes their bank details during the rebate period an administrative charge of €20 will apply. This will be deducted from the 12th monthly refund. From month 13 onwards the normal monthly premium applies. NB: If you miss a payment during the rebate period (first twelve months), the monthly rebate will cease until payments with the insurance company are brought up to date.
As a client of PFP Financial Services (trading as SmartQuotes) our team will always be available to assist in any queries you may have in relation to financial products. We will also from time to time advise you of offers we have which are exclusive to existing clients. These services are available as long as you continue to maintain your policy under our agency.
Through the lenders or other undertakings with which we hold an agency, the Company can provide advice on and arrange products from the following range: fixed-rate loans, variable rate mortgages, capital & interest mortgages, interest only mortgages, endowment mortgages, pension mortgages, residential investment property mortgages.
PFP Financial Services Limited (trading as SmartQuotes) provides mortgage advice on a limited analysis (providing services on the basis of a limited number of contracts and product producers available on the market). We provide advice on KBC Ireland and PIBA Mortgages
We will need to collect sufficient information from you before we can offer any advice on housing loans. This is due to the fact that a key issue in relation to mortgage advice is affordability. Such information should be produced promptly upon request.
We may receive up to 1% (or whatever maximum is applicable) of the loan for arranging mortgage finance. This commission is paid by the mortgage lender. The actual amount of commission will be disclosed at a later stage in the ESIS (European Standardised Information Sheet) which will be forwarded to you. Information on the variation in levels of commission payable by the different creditors providing credit agreements being offered are available on request. Please note that lenders may charge specific fees in certain circumstances and if this applies, these fees will be specified in your Loan Offer. You have the right to pay a fee separately and not include it in the loan. Typically, this situation arises in relation to specialist lending. If we provide mortgage advice and obtain a Loan Offer for you, and you subsequently do not proceed with your mortgage application through our firm, we may charge you an arrangement fee of €500 for our services. This will be advised in writing to you in advance.
General Insurance – Household Insurance
All qualifying household business initiated via the website is transacted with Kennco Underwriting Limited, Cover Centre Insurance Limited, Wrightway Underwriting Limited, Zurich Insurance and Eversure. Full details are available on our website. The Company will receive a commission for all business transacted via our agencies with insurance companies. Where a policy fee is charged this is non-refundable. There is also a cancellation fee applicable of €20 if the policy is cancelled within the term
General Insurance – Travel and Wedding Insurance
The Company receives a commission in respect of Travel and Weddings Insurance business going through the SmartQuotes website from Blue Insurances.
The Company can provide advice on PRSA’s, Personal Pensions, Executive Pensions, Group Pensions, Buy Out Bonds, AMRF, ARF, Annuities and other related pension products as requested. For this the Company is remunerated by commission and other payments from product producers on the completion of business. In certain circumstances, it will be necessary to charge a fee for services provided.
Advisor fees: €100 – €200 per hour.
Additional fees may be payable for complex cases or to reflect value, specialist skills or urgency. We will give an estimate of this rate in advance of providing you with services. If we receive commission from a product provider, this will be offset against the fee which we will charge you. Where the commission is greater than the fee due, the commission will become the amount payable to the intermediary unless an arrangement to the contrary is made. Any fees where applicable will be advised in advance to the client in writing. Fee’s may be charged for advice given irrespective of whether a product purchase is initiated by the client.
The company may be remunerated by commission earned from insurers and product producers to whom orders are transmitted. Summary details of these payments will also be included in a product information document, where relevant, which you will receive before an application form for a product is completed, and extended details will also be included with your cooling-off letter, where relevant. Any additional charges for financial planning services will be clearly disclosed to you and agreed in writing prior to the inception of any policy.
We may receive additional remuneration from product producers based on the volume of business placed or otherwise. We may also receive renewal or trail commissions while your products remain inforce. All of these payments contribute to the overall cost of running our business and providing you with an ongoing service.
If for any reason you cease to be a client of ours and we subsequently receive any amounts of commission, we shall be entitled to retain such amounts. It is your responsibility to notify any company from which we are receiving commission of your change of agent/advisor. If we have arranged for your fee to be offset by commissions derived from a product which you subsequently cancel or cease to pay, and in consequence we are obliged to refund commissions paid to us, we reserve the right to charge you a fee to reimburse us for the amount of commission refunded.
With most policies you have a ‘cooling off’ period during which you can cancel a policy and get a refund of any premiums you have paid. These will be clearly advised in the policy information received from the company or the relevant insurer.
Conflict of Interest
It is the policy of the Company to avoid a conflict of interest when providing services to clients. Where an unavoidable conflict arises we will advise you of this in writing before providing any business service. If you have not been informed of any such conflict you may assume that none arises.
The Company has a written procedure for handling customer complaints. This procedure ensures that all complaints are recorded and, where appropriate, acknowledged in writing within 5 business days. On completion of our investigation we will provide you with a report of the outcome. If you remain dissatisfied with the handling of and/or response to a complaint you may refer the matter to the Financial Services Ombudsman or the Pensions Ombudsman. A full copy of our complaints procedure is available on request.
The Company is a member of the Investor Compensation Scheme Ltd established under the Investor Compensation Act 1998. The legislation provides for the establishment of a compensation scheme and to the payment in certain circumstances, of compensation to clients of companies covered by the Act. However, you should also be aware that a right to compensation would only arise where money or investment instruments held by this Company on your behalf cannot be returned either for the time being or for the foreseeable future and where the client falls within the definition of eligible investor as contained in the Act. In the event that a right to compensation is established, the amount payable is the lesser of 90% of the client’s loss, which is recognised as being eligible for compensation or €20,000. The Company also holds Professional Indemnity insurance of €1,500,000 in compliance with the Insurance Mediation Directive.
Default on payments by clients
Our Company will exercise its legal rights to receive payments due to it from clients (fees and insurance premiums) for services provided. In particular, without limitation of the generality of the foregoing, the Company will seek reimbursement for all payments made to insurers on behalf of clients where the Company has acted in good faith in renewing a policy of insurance for the client.
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 you to policy documents or product terms for the details of such provisions.
Mortgage lenders may seek early repayment of a loan and interest if you default on your repayments. Your home is at risk if you do not maintain your agreed repayments.
Client’s Money: Life, Pension and Investment Business
The Company does not accept cash for the payment of insurance premiums. All business transacted will be on the basis of payment by direct debit/ cheque with funds being paid directly to the insurance company.
Client’s Money: Home Insurance Business
In the case where Household Insurance is transacted with Kennco, Cover Centre, Wrightway, Zurich and Eversure the company will operate a client premium account. This account is segregated from company funds and is reconciled on a monthly basis. For further details on our Home Insurance products please see the dedicated page on our home insurance webpage. This includes a schedule of charges.
Client’s Money: General Insurance Business – Other
In the case of general insurance transacted by the client via to Blue Insurances (Wedding and Travel Insurance) the funds are sent directly to the insurer and no fund pass via the company.
Premium Rebates: Home Insurance Business
We will refund any rebate due to you within 5 business days of receiving notification from the product provider. Please note that any charges due to us as outlined in the schedule of charges section (provided with the policy documents) and any outstanding balance on any other account you hold with us, will be deducted from any rebate due to you prior to being issued to you.
SmartQuotes.ie (a trading name of PFP Financial Services Limited) holds agencies with the main Life Insurance companies in Ireland a list of agencies held is available on request. All wedding insurance and travel insurance is placed via our agency with Blue Insurance, a firm regulated by Central Bank of Ireland. All Household Insurance is placed via our agencies with Cover Centre Insurance Limited, Kennco Underwriting Limited, Wrightway Underwriting Limited, Zurich Insurance and Eversure, firms that are regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland.
All claims are handled by the relevant insurer. In the event of a claim please contact us (see below) and we will provide you with the relevant contact details of the insurer.
All information received by us will be treated in the strictest confidence. We will only disclose information obtained in the following circumstances:
1. Where we are obliged to do so by our regulator or
2. Where we are required to do so by law or
3. On your written instruction
The Company complies with the Data Protection Acts 1988 and 2003. The data which you provide to us will be held on a computer database and paper files for the purpose of arranging transactions on your behalf.
All calls, both inbound and outbound, may be recorded.
Irish law will govern the provision of the services covered by the Company, and the Irish Courts will have exclusive jurisdiction over any dispute.
Important legal information
Online Calculators – Terms & Conditions of use
A. Usage Agreement
You agree that the results produced from any of the online calculator applications is not a quotation for service and that you understand that related results produced represent an indicative or “ball-park” set of costs. It should be noted that accurate calculation results and quotations can only be received directly from a company representative after full details have been received on an application form. All applications are subject to underwriting from the relevant insurer.
B. Limited License
We grant you a non-exclusive, revocable right to use the calculator applications solely for the purpose of receiving an indicative cost of theoretical circumstances. We may revoke your license at any time without notice.
We make no express or implied warranties or representations with respect to the calculator applications (including, without limitation, warranties of fitness, merchantability, non-infringement, or any implied warranties arising out of a course of performance or trade usage). In addition, we make no representation that the operation of the applications will be uninterrupted or error-free, and we will not be liable for the consequences of any interruptions or errors.
Anti-Money Laundering Requirements
As with other professional services companies, we are under stringent requirements to identify our clients for the purposes of anti-money laundering legislation. We are required to request from you, and retain, some information and documentation for these purposes. If satisfactory evidence is not provided within a reasonable time, there may be circumstances in which we may not be able to proceed with your business transaction.
The provision of investment services is regulated under the Criminal Justice (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing) Act 2010 and, as such, directors and staff in Investment and Mortgage Intermediary companies are required to report all knowledge or suspicion or reasonable grounds to know or suspect that a criminal offence giving rise to any direct or indirect benefit from criminal conduct has been committed, regardless of whether that offence had been committed by a client or a third party. If, as part of our normal work, we have knowledge or suspicion, or have reasonable grounds to know or suspect that such offences have been committed we are required by law to make a report to An Garda Siochana and Revenue Commissioners. In such circumstances we are prohibited from discussing such reports with you of same, such prohibition arising from restrictions imposed by the “tipping off” provisions of the anti-money laundering legislation.
Information submitted on application forms
It is the responsibility of the client to ensure that all information submitted is complete and accurate. It should be noted that clients/(s) have a duty to disclose any material facts, which come to light between the date, the proposal form is signed and the date the policy is issued. Failure to do so may result in any subsequent claim being refused. When you are applying for Life Insurance, Mortgage Life Insurance, Income Protection or Specified Illness Cover you are under a legal obligation to disclose all relevant details about your health or any other relevant item as requested on the application form. If it subsequently transpires that you did not disclose on your application something which was relevant and which you knew about, then the insurance company may cancel the cover under the policy and no claim will be paid. The insurance company will rely on what you have told them in your application. When in doubt about a specific item it should be disclosed and the relevant Insurance Company will decide on its relevance. Where you do not wish to disclose this information to the intermediary the Insurer can be contacted directly.
Accuracy of Quotations
While every effort is made to ensure that quotations provided are accurate it is possible that from time to time the premium quoted may change between the time of the initial quotation and the policy issue. This premium advised by the insurer will be communicated to you once the policy has been submitted on receipt of a fully completed application. It is possible that the premium could be changed by the insurer between the time of submission of the application and the policy issuing due to various factors such as birthdays occurring, insurance company rates increasing etc. We will however keep you advised on any alterations at the earliest possible time. Any special terms relating to medical and other changes to standard criteria will be communicated to you in advance of policy issue and you will be required to confirm your acceptance of these in writing in advance. After policy issue clients can use the provisions in the policy in relation to the “Cooling off Period” if they do not wish to proceed. The information relating to the “Cooling off Period” will be included in the policy information from the relevant insurer.
We can arrange for you to purchase certain products but cannot provide specific advice on your circumstances, product type or provider. This is known as Execution Only. For Execution Only transactions no advice is provided and the product and provider is selected by the client. By signing the execution only letter the client is acknowledging they have neither requested nor been given any advice in relation to this product/ provider. Furthermore, by undertaking the transaction on an Execution Only basis that the client acknowledges that they are aware of the financial consequences of replacing an existing policy with a new policy and that if a new policy is taken out in complete or partial replacement of an existing policy that the client is satisfied that this new policy meets their needs. Where a transaction is being undertaken on an Execution Only basis this will be advised to you at the time of receiving the quotation.
Clients should note that no cover is confirmed as being in place unless the original policy documents have been received or confirmation has been received in writing from the insurer that cover is in place.
From time to time we may communicate with users of the site to advise them of current products. If you do not wish to receive these emails, please unsubscribe on receipt of the email or email email@example.com with the subject line “unsubscribe”. The Company may correspond with you by phone, email, fax and SMS. By requesting a quotation on a website you are consenting to be contacted by a member of our sales team.
I confirm having read the paragraphs in relation to Data Protection in the Terms of Business, give my consent to the company making contact with me by letter, phone, email, or SMS text in relation to the range of services provided by the company or its associated or partnership companies and to the sharing of relevant information as indicated.
If you do not wish to avail of these services, please tick here
and return the envelope to the following address quoting your name and address:
PFP Financial Services (trading as SmartQuotes), Freepost, Licence F4739, Dublin 6
The value of your investment can fall as well as rise. Past performance is not a guide to future performance. The Euro value of non-euro denominated assets can rise and fall as a result of exchange rate fluctuations.
Where references are made to tax relief or taxation these figures are for illustrative purposes only. Where clarification is required a Registered Tax Adviser should be contacted. A full list is available at http://www.taxireland.ie
PFP Financial Services Limited trading as SmartQuotes
Registered office and Place of Business
29 Terenure Road East, Rathgar
Telephone No + 353 1 4980005
The Terms of Business above are effective from June 2016 until further notice.