Terms of Business

Regulatory status

Phelan Caswell 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 Union (Insurance Distribution) Regulations, 2018. 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 or by reference to the Central Bank’s registers of Insurance Intermediaries and Investment Intermediaries available on its website.  Phelan Caswell 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. We do not have a holding, direct or indirect, representing 10 per cent or more of the voting rights or of the capital in any insurance undertaking and likewise no insurer has a such a holding in Phelan Caswell Insurances. We represent our customers when dealing with insurers.

Phelan Caswell Insurances Ltd provides advice on a fair and personal 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.

When providing services for life assurance, pension, and investment products, Phelan Caswell Insurances Ltd operates under the trading name of Phelan Caswell Insurances Wealth Management.

In relation to non-insurance based investment products, we provide advice on a limited analysis and non-independent basis, as we may receive remuneration from the product providers of such products. These products include structured products and tracker bonds. The product provider with which we currently hold an agency for such products are BCP Asset Management and Wealth Options.

 

PERIODIC ASSESSMENT OF INVESTMENT PRODUCTS

We do not conduct a periodic assessment of the suitability of insurance-based investment products or non-life financial instruments on an ongoing basis unless instigated at your request. However, 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 or investment 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.

 

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 Phelan Caswell Insurances Ltd are protected under the terms of the Brokers Ireland Compensation Fund, and the indemnity provided under the Insurance Distribution Regulations whereby premiums paid to Phelan Caswell Insurances Ltd. for renewals invited by insurers or accepted proposals, are deemed to be paid to the relevant insurer.

Phelan Caswell 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

Phelan Caswell 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, Phelan Caswell 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

There is no charge for credit/direct debit card transactions.

 

Handling Clients Money

Phelan Caswell Insurances Ltd will accept payments in cash and by cheque in respect of all classes of insurance in circumstances permitted under the Insurance Distribution Regulations. We are not authorised to accept cash or negotiable instruments in any other circumstances.

 

Receipts

Phelan Caswell Insurances Ltd shall issue a receipt for each non-negotiable or negotiable instrument or payment received, pursuant to Consumer Protection Code. 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 as an additional administration fee.

 

conflicts of interest

It is the policy of Phelan Caswell 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

Phelan Caswell 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 

Phelan Caswell Insurances Ltd as part of our service to clients operates a clearly defined Complaints Procedure. Our Complaints Procedure is in line with the requirements of the Consumer Protection Code. 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, Brokers Ireland.

 

DATA PROTECTION

We operate to the highest standards of client confidentiality and meet statutory requirements under the Data Protection Acts 1998 to 2018, and the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation effective from 25th May 2018.

 

Our staff and support service providers will use your personal information to offer advice on suitable products, service your business on an ongoing basis, monitor services for quality control purposes, or as otherwise required by law. For these purposes we may share your contact details and other relevant information with product providers and our support service providers, for the purposes of providing you with appropriate advice.

 

We would also like to offer you products and services which we think may be of interest to you. In order to do so, we would like your consent so that we may contact you by letter, email, SMS text, or telephone (mobile and landline). You have the right to ask us not to send marketing information to you at any time.

 

Full details of our Data Privacy Notice – Customer Summary is available on request or on our website www.pcinsurances.ie

 

CALL RECORDING

Phelan Caswell Insurances records all telephone calls for monitoring, verification, and quality purposes. In relation to non-insurance investment products we keep recordings of such conversations with the client and communications with the client, which will be available on request for a period of between five and seven years.

 

 

These Terms of Business are effective 14th May 2019.