Dover’s Client Protection Policy

Introduction

Dover’s Client Protection Policy sets out a number of important client protections designed to ensure every Dover client get the best possible advice and the maximum protection available under the law. You should read each section of Dover’s Client Protection Policy carefully and make sure you understand it and agree with it before you decide to accept our advice and instruct us to implement the advice.

Dover’s Client Protection Policy sets out my obligations to you as my client and your obligations to me, and includes a clear and prominent warning on the limit of my authority from Dover. 

These mutual obligations form part of our contract, and part of my duty of care to you as your adviser. 

Please refer any questions or concerns regarding Dover’s Client Protection Policy to Dover’s Responsible Manager, Terry McMaster, at terry@dover.com.au

  • This is a clear and prominent warning from Dover on the limits of your adviser’s authority.

    You should consider these limits before deciding to acquire financial services through your adviser and you should not acquire these services unless you understand and accept these limits. This warning is part of Dover’s commitment to the highest possible compliance standards. These standards include making sure you know the limits of your adviser’s authority before you decide to acquire a financial service.

    Under the Corporations Act Dover is not responsible for anything done by your adviser which is not within the authority provided by Dover in these circumstances.

    Your adviser is only authorised to provide advice that complies with the Corporations Act and the related regulations and regulatory guidelines. Your Adviser cannot provide advice or do anything else which breaches a law or an ASIC regulation, is outside of Dover’s AFSL or which is not in your best interests or appropriate to your circumstances.

    Your adviser’s authority does not include:

    • failing to disclose a commission or other amount payable by any person other than you;
    • failing to disclose a conflict of interest;
    • theft or any other fraudulent activity;
    • churning an insurance policy, ie an inappropriate recommendation for a new insurance policy for the purpose of generating a commission or a similar fee;
    • failing to adequately research a recommended financial product;
    • failing to consider your circumstances when recommending a financial or service;
    • failing to provide personal advice in the form required under the Corporations Act;
    • transferring money to or from an account without your written consent for that specific transfer;
    • acquiring or disposing of a financial product without your specific written consent;
    • recommending a financial service that a reasonable financial planner would not recommend;
    • failing to advise you of a tax liability, stamp duty or similar cost of a recommended action;
    • failing to advise you of a negative consequence of a recommended action;
    • any act that breaches a law of Australia or a state of Australia including the law of negligence, the criminal law and the corporations law or any ASIC regulation or regulatory guideline; or
    • advising on “off the plan” or similar property purchases.

    Your adviser must observe these limits on his or her authority as part of the contract with you.

    Dover’s license can be read here: Dover’s License. We ask that you read Dover’s license and understand the limits on your adviser’s authority before you decide to accept our advice.

  • The Corporations Act in effect says you must be able to understand the concepts, words, phrases and sentences used in your SOA. You should read and understand the attached materials from ASIC that sets out the guidance on SOA: IR 04-61 ASIC provides guidance on Statement of Advice and RG 90 Example Statement of Advice: Scaled advice for a new client

    If your SOA is not able to be understood you may be able to claim compensation through the Credit and Investments Ombudsman (“CIO”) for any loss suffered as a consequence.

    You should not act on any aspect of this SOA unless you understand that:

    • every financial investment product has risk and can fall in value and
    • every risk insurance product is complex and may not cover you against every risk.

    If you do not understand a concept, word, phrase or sentence used in this SOA you should ask me for a further explanation so that you do understand it. You should not act on any advice in this SOA unless you understand every word, phrase or sentence used in it, as well as its general intent and import.

    You agree that if you act on our advice you will not subsequently claim to have not understood the general intent of this SOA or any word, phrase or sentence used in it.

  • The Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) publishes guidelines setting out certain matters that must be included in your SOA.

    Referral arrangements and fees

    Dover does not have any referral arrangements which could influence this statement of advice and we have not paid any person for referring you to us other than as disclosed elsewhere in this SOA.

    Conflicts of interest

    We do not have any relationships that may create a conflict of interest that would influence our advice to you, other than as disclosed elsewhere in this SOA.

    Salaries to staff and other services to you

    The payment of staff salaries does not influence our advice in any way. The provision of accounting services and other business services to you for a fee does not influence our advice in any way.

    Incomplete or inaccurate advice

    Our advice is only as good as the information you provide to us. We are required to warn you that the advice may be based on incomplete or inaccurate information relating to your relevant personal circumstances. Hence, before acting on the advice, you should consider the appropriateness of the advice, having regard to your objectives, financial situation and needs.

    You should not rely on our advice and you should contact us immediately to provide complete and accurate advice if the information you have provided to us is incomplete or inaccurate. We will then prepare a further statement of advice for you.

    Research of financial products

    We have researched any financial products recommended in this SOA and believe they are appropriate to your personal circumstances and in your best interests under the Corporations Act.

    Approved product list (APL)

    The recommended financial products are limited to those on our APL and do not include all available financial products. A copy of the APL can be provided to you upon request.

    Risk disclosure and no guarantee of performance

    All investments, including products presented as “capital stable” or “conservative” contain some risk. So do investments that are not financial products, such as businesses and properties.

    “Risk” means there is a possibility that you will lose capital value and/or the income from the financial product or other investment will be less than expected or performance will otherwise fall below expectations. This risk derives from the general economic environment as well as the specific circumstances of the product provider.

    Accordingly we do not guarantee the performance of any investment in any way and we are not responsible if you lose capital value or the income from the investment is less than expected.

    Financial service guide (“FSG”)

    You have received a copy of our FSG and you may request a further copy of our FSG at any time. Our FSG sets out certain information required under the Corporations Act and your responsibilities as a client and the provisions of the FSG are terms and conditions of our contract.

    Our FSG may change from time to time and where it does the provisions of the new FSG are automatically included as terms and conditions of our contract.

    Cooling off period

    There may be a cooling off period of 14 days on any financial products including insurance products we may recommend and you may change your mind without penalty during this period if you acquire such a product.

    Protection of personal information

    Your personal information is protected by the privacy laws. This information will not be provided to anyone or used for any other purpose unless this is necessary to comply with the law. The Corporations Law requires your personal information to be retained by Dover Financial Advisers Pty Ltd for seven years.

    Scope of advice

    Your SOA only relates to the specific matters contained in it and does not aim to cover all aspects of your financial profile. We are not responsible for any matter not covered by this statement of advice or any other matter potentially impacting your financial profile.

    Time limits and responsibility for implementing our advice

    You should not act on any recommendation after thirty days of the date of the statement of advice without our written confirmation that our recommendations are still suited to you.

    No responsibility will be taken for any advice acted on after thirty days without our separate written confirmation that the advice is still suited to you.

    We will not be responsible for any losses connected to our advice if it is not implemented by us, if you do not engage us as your adviser or if you cease to engage us as your adviser.

    Your goals and objectives

    Your SOA will help you achieve your goals and objectives, however, we do not guarantee your goals and objectives will be met. This will depend on the general economy, the regulatory environment, numerous decisions you make, and the performance of the financial products.

    These matters are not within our control and therefore no promise is made regarding whether our recommendations will help you meet your goals and objectives.

    Risk insurance advice

    ASIC has expressed concerns about churning risk insurance policies, i.e. the process of cancelling an existing policy and applying for a new policy without any real benefit to the client. Dover shares these concerns and does not allow churning. By accepting our risk insurance recommendations you acknowledge they do not comprise churning, are in your best interests, are appropriate to you and are not motivated by any other criteria.

  • The adviser-client relationship is an enduring relationship that carries on over the years.

    The adviser-client relationship creates mutual obligations between us, as your adviser, and you, as our client. Each of us is required to actively engage in the advice process. This includes spending time becoming familiar with the advice and any financial products that we have recommended, making appropriate enquiries before deciding to accept our advice and ensuring that the advice remains appropriate to you over time as your preferences change and as the investment environment changes.

    Our promises to you as your adviser

    We will use our best efforts to ensure our advice is in your best interests and appropriate to you.

    We will notify you of any significant change in the law or investment world which may affect our advice to you provided you have a statement of advice from us that is not more than six months old and are an active client who is engaging with us on an on-going basis.

    Our statements of advice and other services will be provided to you in accordance with Dover’s Client Protection Policy.

    Ours statements of advice and other services will be provided to you in accordance with the Corporations Act and the various regulatory guidelines and similar publications issued by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission.

    We will observe all directions and instructions from Dover Financial Advisers Pty Ltd and adhere to its standards regarding the formulation and presentation of advices.

    We will use our best efforts to ensure you receive exemplary service and the highest quality advice at all times in accordance with Dover’s Client Protection Policy.

    We agree that we are responsible to you for any losses caused by any breach by us of Dover’s Client Protection Policy.

    Your promises to us as our client

    You promise to take an active interest in the preparation and implementation of our advice and to ensure it remains appropriate to you and an effective strategy for improving your financial profile.

    You must contact us every six months to request that we review our advice to you and up-date our advice for identified changes in your circumstances and the investment environment. You agree that six monthly reviews are an essential aspect of our relationship.

    You are responsible for ensuring your bank account and investment account details including account numbers, passwords, PINs and similar information are kept confidential and that passwords and PINs are changed at least once a month.

    You agree that Dover is not responsible for any losses incurred by you:

    1. for any reason after six months from the date of our most recent statement of advice;
    2. for any reason connected to the misuse of your bank account and investment account details by any person and any failure by any person to keep your account details, passwords, PINs and similar information confidential or any other cyber-security issues including the hacking of your computer records;
    3. if you do not instruct us to implement our advice to you;
    4. if you cease to engage us as your adviser or if you engage another financial planner; or
    5. as a result of the insolvency or other financial failure of any life insurance office or other financial institution.

    Protection of personal information

    Your personal information is protected by the privacy laws. Your personal information will not be provided to anyone or used for any other purpose unless this is necessary to comply with the law. The Corporations Law requires your personal information to be retained by Dover Financial Advisers Pty Ltd for seven years.

    We confirm we have met the requirements of the Australian anti-money laundering laws and anti-terrorism laws and have retained proof of your identity on our files. No suspicious matters have been identified.

    Acting on advice and delays in implementing advice

    You are responsible for ensuring our advice to you is implemented on a timely basis notwithstanding you may have engaged us to implement it for you. You indemnify and release us from any claim for costs or losses connected to any delays in implementing the advice no matter what caused the delay or who is responsible for the delay. This includes an indemnity and release from any claim connected to an insured event occurring before an insurer has accepted liability under an application for insurance and any claim connected to asset prices moving before a sale or buy instruction is implemented.

  • Non-monetary matters impacting our advice to you

    The best insurances are rarely the cheapest insurances.

    We have considered matters other than just premiums when selecting the insurer whose products are in your best interests and most appropriate to you.

    These non-monetary matters include the scope of the insurance cover and the insurer’s:

    1. policy definitions for critical insured events (eg its definition of a heart attack)
    2. reputation and corporate culture
    3. philosophy on claims management and
    4. general dealing with clients and their bereaved families.

    We want to be as confident as possible that your claims will be paid in full and on time.

    Your duty of utmost good faith

    You acknowledge that any risk insurance contracts are contracts of utmost good faith and this requires you to disclose to the insurer all information that may be relevant to a decision to accept your insurance application including your medical history. You undertake to disclose in writing to the insurer all such information. You indemnify and release each of the adviser and Dover from any responsibility for any loss caused to you or any related person as a result of any failure to disclose this information to an insurer.

    New risk insurance contracts

    Sub-section 29(3) of the Insurance Contracts Act 1984 allows a claim to be denied by the insurer within three years of any new insurance policy being set up if the insured (ie you) failed to disclose all relevant facts. The three-year period starts afresh once a new insurance policy starts.

    You should not cancel any old insurance contracts until the new insurance contracts are in place, otherwise you may not have a continuity of cover and may be uninsured.

    The underinsurance problem

    The recommended sums insured are less than the amounts that would be recommended by many other financial planners, and some would say you are under-insured. You are aware of this, and have compromised on the sums insured due to competing claims on your budget.

    The recommended sums insured are sensible compromises and, in summary, we believe they are appropriate to you having regard to your overall financial profile. Let me know if you are concerned with your under-insurance position and wish to increase the sums insured.

    You agree to not complain or seek any form of compensation for any loss suffered as a result of being under-insured should an insured event occur.

    Client must maintain all new risk insurance policies for at least two years

    You agree to maintain all new risk insurance policies for at least two years and you agree to compensate the adviser for commissions or other income that have to be re-paid to an insurer or other person if you fail to do this.

    Indemnity and release regarding insured event occurring during the application period

    You indemnify and release the adviser against any responsibility for any losses suffered by you as a consequence of the insured event occurring  from the time the application is lodged with an insurer until the time it is accepted by the insurer, or is not accepted by the insurer, and you accept that you may not have any insurance cover during the application period.

    Your obligation to cancel any old insurance policy and not pay premiums on any old insurance policy

    If we recommend you replace an old insurance policy with a new insurance policy it is your responsibility to cancel the old insurance policy once the new insurance policy is in place. This is so notwithstanding any other statement in this statement of advice.

    Further, you should not pay any premiums on any old insurance policy and we are not required to compensate you if for any reason you do pay a premium on the old policy once the new policy is in force.

    Minimum balances and other conditions on old super funds for the retention of insurance benefits

     If we recommend you retain a minimal balance in your old super fund to retain insurance benefits you must make sure you continue to comply with any of your old super fund’s rules for the payment of insurance including time limits, minimum balances and minimum contributions.

    It is your obligation to monitor the old super fund’s rules to ensure the insurances remain in place.

    We are not required to monitor the old super fund’s rules to ensure the insurances remain in place and are not liable if for any reason you are not able to claim a benefit under the old super fund’s insurance arrangements.

  • ASIC has published two information sheets dealing with disclosure of information to clients about SMSFs. These are information sheet INFO 205 “Advice on self-managed superannuation funds: disclosure of risks” and information sheet INFO 206 “Advice on self-managed superannuation funds: disclosure of costs”.

    If you are setting up or retaining a SMSF we ask you to read each information sheet and afterwards refer to them as needed to remain aware of the risks and costs connected to running a SMSF.

    If you set up or retain a SMSF you are deemed to have read these information sheets and understood and agreed to the risks connected to SMSFs identified by ASIC in these information sheets.

  • You undertake to get separate written advice from a registered tax agent or solicitor regarding the income tax implications of any proposed transaction before implementing your SOA. You indemnify and release Dover from any responsibility for any loss caused to you or any related person as a result of any failure to get this advice.

  • All investments recommended in your SOA should be held for a minimum holding period of at least ten years. This is notwithstanding any statement made by the product issuer or any other person in a product disclosure statement or similar document or else where in this statement of advice.

    You agree that the performance of the investment will not be known and will not be able to be measured until the end of the minimum holding period and that no claim or complaint will be made regarding investment performance until the end of the minimum holding period.

  • The Corporations Act and the Australian Investments and Securities Commission (ASIC) requires us to provide you with general information about the class of financial products we recommend to you.

    We satisfy this requirement by referring to relevant materials provided by ASIC and incorporating these materials into our advice to you, so that you can better understand our advice before you decide whether to accept it.

    Incorporating the ASIC materials into our advice to you helps you understand our advice, how our advice is appropriate to you and in your best interest and our financial planning process generally and builds a better long-term client-adviser relationship.

    You should read the following materials, including the linked materials, because they form an important part of our advice to you.

    ASIC’s Money Smart website

    The best source of information about financial products is ASIC’s Money Smart website.  You can access this website here: www.moneysmart.gov.au.

    The following table directs you to the particular information on the Money Smart website relevant to each of the financial products we recommend you consider as part of this statement of advice.

    This information forms part of our statement of advice to you.

    Financial Product Additional materials forming part of this statement of advice
    Risk insurances generally Additional information on risk insurances generally
    Life insurance Additional information on life insurance
    Total and permanent disability
    insurance (TPD)
    Additional information on TPD insurance
    Trauma insurance Additional information on trauma insurance
    Income protection/continuance insurance Additional information on income protection insurance
    Superannuation and retirement Additional information on superannuation and retirement
    Self managed super funds Additional information on self-managed superannuation funds
    Risk insurances inside super Additional information on risk insurances in super funds
    Managed funds Additional information on managed funds
    Shares Additional information investing in shares
    Property Additional information on investing in property
    International investments Additional information on international investments
  • The following information is not required under the law but we believe it is good practice to provide it to you and that doing so enhances our long-term adviser-client relationship.

    ASIC’s Financial Advice and You

    ASIC has published a booklet called “Financial Advice and You” to help you identify when you need to get financial advice and how to get the most out of your relationship with me as your financial planner. You can access this booklet here: ASIC’s booklet “Financial advice and you”.

    Other information provided by ASIC relevant to this advice

    ASIC’s Money Smart website provides excellent information on how to get the most out of our client-adviser relationship. This includes:

    1. Identifying your financial advice needs. Work out whether you need financial advice.
    2. Types of financial advice. The type of advice you need depends on your life stage, the amount of money you have to invest and the complexity of your affairs. Find out about your options.
    3. Choosing a financial adviser. How to choose the right adviser.
    4. Financial advisers register. Find out where a financial adviser has worked and what products they can advise on.
    5. Financial advice costs. Learn about the cost of advice and understand what you’re paying for.
    6. Meeting with a financial adviser. Make the most of our meetings
    7. What to look for in financial advice. Learn about the things you should consider before you act on my recommendations.
    8. Working with a financial adviser. How to make the most of ongoing advice and what to do if you want to end our relationship.
    9. Problems with a financial adviser. What to do when things go wrong.
  • Risk insurance premiums can be paid out of your super fund or out of your non-super resources. Paying premiums out of your super fund has the advantage of making your premiums more affordable and not reducing the cash available for day-to-day living.

    But it has the disadvantage of reducing your super benefits on retirement by an amount equal to the premiums, plus lost earnings, compounded over time.

    If we recommend you pay risk insurance premiums out of super this should be reviewed at least every three years. This is to make sure you are comfortable with the on-going trade off between immediate affordability and your long-term retirement plans.

    It is your responsibility to complete this review.

    We recommend you do not pay risk insurance premiums out of super for more than three years unless you are paying extra contributions to ensure your long-term retirement plans are achievable.

    ASIC provides additional information on the advantages and disadvantages of paying risk insurance premiums out of super funds and you can read this information here: ASIC information on paying insurance premiums through superannuation.

    We ask that you read this ASIC information before you accept any advice to pay a risk insurance premium through super.

  • Risk insurance premiums have risen significantly in recent years. This has created an affordability issue for many clients.

    We are mindful of affordability issues, and ask that you contact us immediately if you have any concerns about affordability.  You should not accept our advice on risk insurances policies unless you are sure you can afford the premium over the life of the policy.

    Paying an insurance premium has an opportunity cost, being whatever else you would do with the monies used to pay the insurance premium.

    We consider affordability when preparing our advice. This involves potential trade-offs between the scope of insurance cover and the cost of the cover.

    Common examples of these potential trade-offs are tabulated here:

    Recommended strategy Advantage Disadvantage
    Stepped premiums over level premiums Lower premiums in the short term Higher premiums over the expected life of the policy.
    Indemnity value rather than agreed value Lower premiums You may not be paid the full sum insured on the insured event occurring. Payment of your claim is more likely to be disputed by the insurer.
    90 day waiting period Lower premiums Lower cover. More particularly no benefit payments between days 31 and 90 after insured event occurs
    Lower sum insured Lower premiums Lower benefits paid if the insured event occurs: you are under-insured
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