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Terms of Business

BHP Insurance > Terms of Business

Regulatory Status

BHP Insurances Ltd is authorised by the Central Bank of Ireland as an Investment Intermediary under the Investment Intermediaries Act 1995, and as an Insurance Intermediary under the European Communities (Insurance Mediation) Regulations, 2005. Copies of our authorisations are available on request.  Our authorisations can be verified by contacting the Central Bank of Ireland on 1890 77 77 77.  BHP Insurances Ltd is also regulated by the Competition and Consumer Protection Commission as a Credit Intermediary.  We are subject to the Central Bank’s Consumer Protection Code 2012, the Minimum Competency Code, and the Fitness & Probity Standards, which offer protection to consumers – these codes may be found on the Central Bank’s website www.centralbank.ie. This firm does not have a shareholding in any insurer and likewise no insurer has a shareholding in this firm.

BHP Insurances Ltd provides advice on a fair analysis basis, which means we review a wide range of products available in the market, and place business, in relation to all classes of insurance (life and non life), personal retirement savings accounts (PRSA’s), and tracker bonds with product producers with which we hold an agency. A list of these product producers is available on request. We have developed a number of schemes which are particular industry or voluntary sectors – in these cases we select a particular insurer and recommend that insurer until the scheme is reviewed on an annual basis.

 

Consumer Protection

This firm is a member of the investor compensation scheme established under the Investor Compensation Act 1998. This legislation provides for the establishment of a compensation scheme and to the payment, in certain circumstances, of compensation to clients of firms covered by the Act. However, you should be aware that a right to compensation will only arise where money or investment instruments held by this firm 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 that Act. In the event that a right to compensation is established, the amount payable is the lesser of 90 per cent of your loss which is recognisable as being eligible for compensation or €20,000.

In addition to the compensation available under the “Investor Compensation Act 1998” all clients of BHP Insurances Ltd are protected under the terms of the I.B.A. Compensation Fund, and the indemnity provided under Section 25 (g) of the Insurance Act 2000, whereby premiums paid to BHP Insurances Ltd. for renewals invited by insurers or accepted proposals, are deemed to be paid to the relevant insurer.

BHP Insurances will only recommend insurance companies authorised to transact business in Ireland.

All insurance companies authorised to transact business in the European Union must comply with solvency requirements in accordance with the provisions of the EU Directives. However, we cannot guarantee the solvency of any insurer or other firm with which we hold an agency.

 

Remuneration Policy

BHP Insurances Ltd is remunerated by a combination of commission and fees. We are generally remunerated by insurance undertakings and product producers on a commission basis (although many cases placed have no commission payable to us), the level of which is determined by the class of business being undertaken. Details of commissions receivable are available on request. We may receive additional commissions based on the volume of business placed or linked to a partnership arrangement with a product producer. We receive renewal commissions from product producers. All commissions received contribute to the overall cost of providing ongoing services to our clients and are not offset against fees which we may charge you.

In addition, BHP Insurances Ltd, in respect of personal lines general insurance business (e.g. household, private motor, health, personal accident, travel, etc) may charge a service fee per policy (at inception, renewal, and for mid-term alterations) of up to 30% of the annual premium for your policy.  Service fees in respect of commercial lines general insurance business vary and depend on the complexity; time expended, specialist skills required and urgency – the fee chargeable will be based on these variables and will be shown on your invoice.

With regard to life, pensions, and investments, summary details of commissions will be included, where appropriate, in a product information document, in relation to insurance products.

Some Product producers do not pay commission and in such cases, we charge fees which will be notified to you in advance of providing a service.

Where advice is provided without the placement of a contract, fees are charged per hour at €350 for Directors and €125 for Consultants. In determining the rate and any additional charges, factors such as specialist skill, complexity, value, risk and urgency are taken into account.

All fees are shown clearly on all invoices or correspondence issued to you and are non refundable in the event of policy cancellation.

 

Credit Card Transactions

For payments by credit card a fee of 2% will apply for each transaction.  There is no charge for direct debit card transactions.

 

Handling Clients Money

BHP Insurances Ltd will accept payments in cash and by cheque in respect of all classes of insurance in circumstances permitted under Section 25G of the Investment Intermediaries Act, 1995. We are not authorised to accept cash or negotiable instruments in any other circumstances.

 

Receipts

BHP Insurances Ltd shall issue a receipt for each non-negotiable or negotiable instrument or payment received, pursuant to Section 30 of the Investment Intermediaries Act 1995. These are issued with your protection in mind and should be stored safely.

 

De Minimis Amounts

Where, following the completion of a transaction on your behalf, a balance exists on your account which does not exceed €10, we may write this amount off in our accounts.

 

Conflicts of Interest

It is the policy of BHP Insurances Ltd to avoid any conflict of interest when providing business services to its clients.  However, where an unavoidable conflict may arise we will advise you of this in writing before proceeding to provide any business service.  If you have not been advised of any such conflict you are entitled to assume that none arises.

 

Legal Rights

BHP Insurances Ltd will, if necessary, exercise its legal rights to receive any payment due to it from clients for business services provided by it, and to be reimbursed for any value obtained by the firm on behalf of clients who subsequently default in any payment due to the firm.

Insurers or lender may withdraw benefits, cover, loan facilities, or impose penalties in the event of default of any payments due under any products arranged for your benefit.  Details of these provisions will be included in your product terms and conditions. If you cancel a policy which has been charged on a ‘Minimum and Deposit’ basis, you will not receive a pro-rata rebate of premium.

Non-Disclosure of Information

It is important to note that a failure to disclose material, correct, or complete information on a Proposal Form or Statement of Fact may result in an insurer rejecting a claim. Therefore, it is your responsibility to read and check that the information recorded on a Proposal Form or Statement of Fact is correct and if there are any errors you must notify us immediately. Otherwise, it will be taken that the information shown has been recorded correctly.

 

Complaints 

BHP Insurances Ltd as part of our service to clients operates a clearly defined complaint policy. Where we have not been able to resolve a complaint within 5 business days of receipt, we will acknowledge receipt of a complaint in writing within 5 business days.  We will keep you informed of progress on a regular basis while a complaint is being investigated, and will advised you in writing of the outcome within 5 business days of the completion of the investigation. Any complaints regarding the service you have received from any member of the staff should be addressed to me, Mark Phelan, in the first instance, and if satisfaction is not reached thereafter regarding the matter, contact can be made with the Financial Services Ombudsman or Pensions Ombudsman, as appropriate – contact details will be provided on request.  Alternatively, you can contact our professional body, The Irish Brokers Association.

 

Data Protection

BHP Insurances is a Data Controller as defined in the Data Protection Act 1988 and 2003. We collect your personal details in order to provide the highest standard of service to you, to fulfil these objectives we may share information with insurers and other affiliated professionals. This information may be used to advise you of products and services we may offer from time to time. If you do not wish to receive such marketing information please let us know. We may receive referrals from other firms with which we have a business relationship and may advise them of any transactions arranged for you. We may contact you by way of letter, email, phone, SMS text, or fax, based on the contact details which you provide to us, for the purposes outlined above. You have the right at any time to request a copy of any ‘personal data’ within the meaning in the 1988 Act (as amended or re-enacted) that our office holds for you and to have any inaccuracies in that information corrected.

 

Call Recording

BHP Insurances records all telephone calls for monitoring, verification, and quality purposes.

 

These Terms of Business are effective 1 July 2016.