TERMS OF BUSINESS

SMI Placings Ltd.

9 Regent Gate, 83 High Street

Waltham Cross, Hertfordshire

EN8 7AF

Telephone:+44 (0) 1992 787 333  Fax:+44 (0)1992787 733 Email:info@smiplacings.com

SMI Placings Ltd. is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Our Firm Reference Number (FRN) is 439828

You can check this on the Financial Services Register by visiting the FCA’s website www.fca.org.uk or by telephoning the FCA on 0800 111 6768.

 

Our Service

We are independent Insurance Brokers, arranging Insurance policies for Commercial and Business associated cliental, we act as intermediary and we will advise and make recommendations for you after we have assessed your demands & needs. We will arrange your Insurance cover with insurers and help you with any changes you need to make, answer promptly any queries raised and assist you with claims arising. We will advise you of all amounts payable including any VAT and/or IPT (Insurance Premium Tax) any service charges and any charges for any additional products. Unless otherwise agreed we will send your documentation confirming the basis of cover secured on your behalf, including the name of the insurance company with whom we have placed your business.

 

We may complete a Risk Assessments

Any risk assessment we complete in respect of your insurance requirements are only for the purpose of gathering information regarding your insurance requirement and is only used to obtain quotations giving the insurers an understanding of your business / trade.

The completion of a risk assessment does not confer compliance with insures requirements and should not be regarded as confirmation that you are compliant with the policy terms & its conditions.  

 

 The Markets We Obtain Terms From                                                    

We offer a wide range of Insurance products and have access to all the leading insurance companies and some policies will be placed with MGAs or Wholesale Brokers and Specialist Underwriting Agencies. We can also issue policies on behalf of certain insurance companies, and will provide you with the insurers’ details but not the MGAs, Wholesale Broker or Specialist Underwriting Agencies we used to obtain the terms. This can be requested if required.  

 

Your Duty to Disclose Information

It is your responsibility to provide complete and accurate information to insurers when you take out any insurance policy throughout the life of your policy and when you renew your insurance. If a form is completed on your behalf, you should check that the answers given to any of the questions are true and accurate before signing the document, as the information remains your responsibility. Failure to disclosure any material information to your insurers could invalidate your insurance cover, or affect your rights to claim under the policy. We will not accept any liability for any loss you may suffer in respect of any non-disclosure. You are reminded that it is important to provide your insurers with any material information regarding your business and personal details. Providing a false statement or withholding any relevant information at inception of the policy is a breach of your duty of disclosure.  You should take particular care to check the accuracy of all information you provide. If you are in any doubt as to whether information is material, you should disclose it.

 

Your Continuing obligation

To provide your insurers with any relevant changes during the period of insurance, changes of occupation trade or use and any other relevant alteration to the interest insured.  If you are unsure at anytime and would like to find out if changes could affect your cover then you must contact your broker to discuss this with them.

Quotations

Unless stated otherwise in our documentation, all quotations provided for new insurances are valid only for a period of 30 days from the date of issue.

You should be aware that quotations may change or be withdrawn if the information given to us or your insurers has changed since terms had been issued. After the 30 day period we will have to provide a new quotation which may change from the original terms provided any changes will be advised to you when we re-quote.

 

Receipt of Instructions

We require all instructions relating to the policy you have with us to be put in writing this can be sent to us by post, electronic mail or facsimile, if you don’t receive a reply by the close of business that day this could mean that your request has not been processed or that the insurers have not confirmed this to us. If your instructions are of an urgent nature we recommend you contact our office .We do not accept responsibility for instructions which do not reach us at all due to failures in the postal, electronic or telecommunications systems.

Changes to your Cover

We will normally deal with any requests to amend cover on the day your instructions are received, or the next working day if it is a weekend or public holiday. Please note that our office hours are from 9 AM to 6 PM Mon- Fri. Therefore, we advise that all notifications about any amendments to your cover are advised during working hours otherwise we cannot guarantee that these amendments will be processed and your insurers would have been advised. Sometimes changes cannot be processed without obtaining additional information. If additional information is required we will contact you as quickly as possible.

We will confirm changes to your policy, once agreed, in writing. We will also advise you of any extra premiums you must pay or premiums we must return to you.

 

Financial Crime

Please be aware that current UK money laundering regulations require us to obtain adequate ‘Know Your Client’ information about you. We are also required to cross check you against the HM Financial Sanctions List as part of the information gathering process.

We are obliged to report to the National Crime Agency any evidence or suspicion of financial crime at the first opportunity and we are prohibited from disclosing any such report.

We will not permit our employees or other persons engaged by them to be either influenced or influence others in respect of undue payments or privileges from or to insurers or clients.

 

Terms of Payment

We normally accept payments by guaranteed or credit card or the bankers automated clearing system (BACS) and/or Cheques. Full payment of the premium must be made promptly after cover is affected. Alternations to existing policies need immediate payment on or before the effective date of the changes. Failure to meet the payment date may lead to insurers cancelling your policy you may also be in breach of legally required insurance cover. You may be able to spread your payments through a credit scheme and we will give you full information about your payment options and details of the interest payable at the time we provide you with a quotation. In order to be able to offer you credit facilities we are registered under The Consumer Credit Act. We may withhold certain documents, such as your insurance policy documents or certificates while we are awaiting full payment of premiums (or evidence of no claims discount, unless the full premium is paid). In these circumstances we will ensure you receive full details of your insurance cover and any documents that you need to have by law. Any payments that default will be charged @ £10 for cheques and direct debits default charges are as below (under the heading Fees) excluding any bank charge and any other cost to SMI Placings Ltd.

You will be responsible for paying any time on risk charge and putting in place any alternative insurance and/or payment arrangements you need.

 

How we will handle your money

We act as agents of the insurers and have Risk Transfer Agreements in place with insurers for the business we carry out; we will remit such monies to your insurance company in line with our agreement with them. Any payment we receive from you will be held by SMI Placings Ltd., which pays insurers on your behalf, in a Non Statutory Trust Insurer Risk Transfer Account held with HSBC, meaning that all such monies shall not be subject to any charge, set off or lien. This is known as Risk Transfer. (The Non-Statutory Trust Insurer Risk Transfer Account is in accordance with, as a minimum standard, the requirements of the FCA Rules). In arranging your insurance we may employ the services of other intermediaries who are regulated by the FCA and your premium may be passed to these intermediaries for payment to insurers.

 

What is Risk Transfer Agreements                                                       

We have arrangements in place with most of our insurers in respect of Risk Transfer. Therefore any money we receive from you is deemed to have been received by the insurers. In the unlikely event that SMI should fail to meet its obligation to pass your premiums on to insurers, the risk transfer insurers will honour your policy. We will also advise you, should your insurer not grant us Risk Transfer and any payment due to the insurers will have to be made directly or via the finance company if applicable. 

 

Claims & Loss Recovery

As part of our extended service we will assist you with any claim that you need to make. It is important you notify us of any claim in accordance with the terms of policy. We will then inform your insurance company as soon as possible on your behalf. Our Loss Recovery Service will assist you in preparing your claim and help with any negotiations between you and the insurers until the claim is finalised. It is essential to notify us immediately of all incidents that may result in a claim against your insurance policy. You must do so whether you believe you are liable or not. Any letter or claim received by you must be passed to us immediately, without acknowledgement. If you provide prompt notification of incidents then your insurance company can take steps to protect your interests. Please contact us for guidance on claiming under your policy. You are also reminded that if you are paying your premium via Direct Debit and still have a balance outstanding than any payments you receive in settlements of your claim from insurers will be sent to the finance company directly to clear your balance with them and any remaining amounts will be forwarded on to you.

 

Claims notification

It is important you notify us of any claim in accordance with the terms of your policy. We will then inform your insurance company as soon as possible on your behalf. You are required to present your claims within reasonable time and in order that your insurers can arrange for a loss adjuster to be appointed a loss figure will be required within 48 hrs. This will avoid any unnecessary delays in processing your claim

If the claim involves damage to your property, please do not:-

  • Dispose of damaged items; and/or

  • Authorise repair work (except in an emergency or to prevent further damage)

Until we advise that you can.

If your claim involves damage to third party property or injury to persons please pass copies of all correspondence, including Solicitors’ letters, to us immediately. Any attempt to negotiate or respond to the incident, without prior reference to your insurers or us, may prejudice your cover.

You should be aware that a claim arising after renewal of the policy has been invited, may affect the assessment and acceptance of renewal by your insurers.

SMI Placings takes no responsibility for fraudulent claims submitted by you and any action taken by the insurer against you.

 

Cancellation

Your policy document will detail your rights to cancel your insurance once you have taken it out. Depending on the type of policy you have purchased, you may be entitled to cancel within 14 or 30 days of either conclusion of the contract or receiving your policy documentation, whichever occurs later. This is often referred to as a cooling off period. When you cancel a policy before renewal you will be responsible for paying a charge to meet the cost of cover provided and administration expenses. Please see the Refunds section. To enable your insurer to process the cancellation, you will need to return certificates and any official documents to our office within 30 days of your notice to cancel.

 

Important information on Cost and Our Remuneration

Our remuneration will be commission paid to us by your insurance company unless otherwise agreed, and/ or our fee which will be shown on our invoice; we usually make a charge for arranging, amending or cancelling any policy of insurance. In addition to the premiums charged by insurers a policy administration charge will also generally be made in respect of new policies and subsequent renewals. The amount of any charges will be identified and the actual amount will always be disclosed to you before you commit to purchasing the products. We may also receive remuneration from insurers that are not directly related to the services provided to you. This may be in form of a management or administration fee or revenue based on volume or profitability of insurance business placed with an insurer over a given period. Some insurance providers may provide us with net terms, where this occurs we will add our commission to the net premium based on industry standards for the type of risk up to a maximum of 30% this will be included within the overall premium declared. We may also receive commission on any separated credit facilities arranged for you.

 

We may make the following minimum service charges in addition to any policy chargers levered by insurers. These fees are non refundable.

Arranging new policies minimum of -                                          £50.00

New policy including Risk Assessments minimum of         £100.00

Mid-term adjustments minimum of -                                         £20.00

Renewals minimum of -                                                                     £50.00

Replacement/duplicate certificates or cover notes-         £20.00

 

The specific amount of any fee and service charges will always be advised to you in advanced. We earn the entirety of our commission and/or fees when your risk is successfully placed and take our commission and/or fees immediately upon receipt of payment unless agreed otherwise with your insurer. You are entitled, at any time, to request information regarding any commission which we may have received as a result of placing or renewing your insurance cover.

 

Fees Relating to Direct Debits

For loans below £4999.99

 

Broker Fees

Fees

An administration fee may be charged for additional activity on an account up to

£15.00

 

Client Fees

Fees

An administration fee may be charged for additional activity on an account up to     £15.00

Fee in the event o a default in the minimum monthly payment                                          £30.00

Fee in the event of default leading to cancellation of our account                                      £15.00

Fee in the event of a positive Mid Term Adjustment                                                                £ 0.00

 

For loans over £4999.99

 

Fees

Facility fee may be applied:

  1. For loans up to £4,999.99

  2. For loans between £5000.00 and £14,999.99

  3. For loans above £15,000.00

 

£0.00

£0.00

£0.00

The minimum administration fee for additional activity on an account

£25.00

Fee in the event of a default in the minimum monthly payment

£50.00

Fee in the event of a cancellation of account due to default

£125.00

Fee in the event of an early settlement of account

£0.00

 

Customer Classification

Retail customers – a private individual who is insuring their personal risk such as private motor or household and is subject to greater protection under FCA rules, but not when the individuals is acting in a commercial capacity for the purposes of trade, business or profession; or

Commercial customers- any individuals or person insuring their business risks that is not a Retail customer, subject to a lighter touch to protection under FCA rules where larger commercial risk is involved.

 

Refunds

Where a policy is cancelled before renewal, insurers charge to cover their costs, with the balance refunded to you, subject to no claim having been made. Full details will be available in your policy. In the event of an adjustment giving the rise to a return of premium the amount may be refunded or held to credit.

Your attention is specifically drawn to the following:- Where you cancel your policy after the expiry of the cooling off period or where you request a mid-term adjustment which results in a refund of premium, we reserve the right to charge you for our time and costs. This will usually result in us reducing the amount refunded to you by the FULL amount of the commission and fees we would have received had you not cancelled. The reason for this is that the majority of our costs are incurred either in initially finding and setting up your policy or in the annual renewal process when we might check the ongoing suitability of the cover the policy offers. These costs are recovered through the commission we earn. If you cancel, this does not give us an opportunity to recover the costs we incurred and would often result in us making a loss. However, any charge made will not exceed the cost of the commission and fees we would have earned. For certain commercial insurance policies, insurers will only provide cover where the premium is due in full on inception of the policy. This means that no refund will be paid if the policy is cancelled before renewal. We will advise you if this affects you. In view of the cost involved in making changes to your policy, we will not issue refunds of less than £50. Please note that there are some insurers that will not give return premiums on liability section of the policy.

 

Renewal of your policies

We will send you our Material Facts Declaration / Renewal update & Amendments forms (if applicable to your policy) before your policy is due to be renewed. You are required to complete sign and return the forms prior to renewal advising us of any changes or material facts that have not been disclosed. Otherwise your policy will be renewed on the existing terms. It is your duty to comply and confirm that all the information we hold about you and your insurance requirements are true and accurate.    

SMI Placing will not be held responsible for your failure to advise your insurers of any material facts or Amendments & updates in connection with the insurance policies we have arranged on your behalf.

 

Complaints

It is our intention to provide you with the highest possible level of customer service at all times. However we recognise that things can go wrong occasionally and if this occurs we are committed to resolving matters promptly and fairly.

Should you wish to complain you may do so:

• In writing to the Complaints Manager Mr. Steve Mahmut at SMI Placings Ltd.

• By telephone on +44 (0)1992 787 333

• By Fax on +44 (0) 1992 787 733

• By e-mail at steve@smiplacings.com

• In person by visiting our office:

 

9 Regent Gate, 83 High Street

Waltham Cross, Hertfordshire

EN8 7AF  

 

Should you not be satisfied with our final response, you may be entitled to refer the matter to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS). More information is available on request or on their website. www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk

Further details will be supplied at the time of responding to your complaint.

 

Solvency of Insurers

We will only place insurance with insurers who have been subject to a satisfactory review by us. Whilst the information held by us relies on sources considered to be reliable and we use all reasonable endeavours to review accurately that information in order to protect the interests of our clients, we cannot guarantee the solvency of any insurer with which we place business. We neither accept responsibility for the insurer’s financial standing and financial performance nor do we accept responsibility, in any circumstances and for whatever reason, should the insurer fail to fulfil its obligations to any party. This means that you may still be liable for any premium due and not be able to recover the premium paid, whether in full or in part, should an insurer become insolvent.

 

Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS)

We are covered by the Financial Service Compensation Scheme and you may be entitled to compensation from the scheme if we cannot meet our obligations. Further information about compensation scheme arrangements is available from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme at www.fscs.org.uk

 

Language

Unless otherwise agreed with you in writing all evidence of cover and other documentation provided to you and any discussion with you will be in English. Unless we have agreed otherwise with you, please ensure that any documentation and/or instructions that you provide to us are always in English.

 

Confidentiality and Data Protection

We are registered under the Data Protection Act 1998 and we undertake to comply with the Act in all our dealings with your personal data. All information about you of a sensitive or personal nature will be treated as private and confidential.  We will however use and disclose the information we have about you in the course of arranging, placing and administering your insurance. This may involve passing information about you to the Financial Conduct Authority, insurers, other intermediaries, risk management assessors, uninsured loss recovery agencies and other third parties involved (directly or indirectly) in your insurance. To make sure you get our best deal and to ascertain the most appropriate payment options for you and to protect you from fraud, we and the Insurance Company may use public and personal data from a variety of sources, including credit reference agencies and other organisations. Our search will appear on your credit report and will be visible to other credit providers whether or not your application proceeds. If you do not proceed it will be clear the search was for quotation purposes. By agreeing to the terms and conditions you agree to these uses of your information. We may also pass information about you to credit reference agencies and premium finance providers in connection with the assessment of your financial standing generally and, in particular, where you have requested a premium instalment plan – this may include details of your payment record with us. We may also pass information about you to other companies with which we are associated.  We or they may also use the information we hold about you to provide you with information on other products and services we or they can offer and which we or they feel may be of interest to you.  Please notify us promptly in writing if you do not wish your details to be used for any of these purposes otherwise we shall treat the issue of these Terms as evidence of your informed consent.

 

Communications/Documentation

We will issue all documentation to you in a timely manner. Documentation relating to your insurance will confirm the basis of the cover and provide details of the relevant insurers. It is therefore important that the documentation is kept in a safe place, as you may need to refer to it or need it to make a claim. A new policy/policy booklet is not necessarily provided each year, although a duplicate can be provided at any time upon request. Specimen policy documentation is available on request. You should always check the documentation to ensure all the details are correct and if this is not the case you should contact us immediately.

 

Insurance Act 2015

The Insurance Act 2015 comes into force on the 12th of August 2016. The purpose of the Act is to update the current law to reflect the way in which the insurance market has evolved in modern times with the aim being to achieve a fair and balanced regime between insurers and insureds.

Under the Act, insurance contracts will be based on good faith and you will have a duty to make a fair presentation of the risk to insurers which will include disclosure of:1) every material circumstance which as an insured you are expected to know or ought to know about the risk for which you are seeking insurance;or 2) sufficient information to put a prudent insurer on notice that it needs to make further enquires to reveal those material circumstances. As your insurance broker you can rest assured that we are on hand to help you understand your obligations under the Act and to guide you through the process of gathering the information required to make a fair presentation. We will undertake to present this information to insurers on your behalf in a way which is clear and accessible. In the meantime if you would like to discuss the insurance act or any other related insurance matters please contact us.

 

General

If any provision of these Terms is found to be invalid or unenforceable in whole or in part, the validity of the other provisions of these Terms and the remainder of the provision in question will not be affected. These Terms shall be governed by the laws of England and the parties agree herewith that any dispute arising out of it shall be subject to the exclusive jurisdiction of the relevant court. These Terms supersede all proposals, prior discussions and representations (whether oral or written) between us relating to our appointment as your agent in connection with the arranging and administration of your insurance.  These Terms constitute an offer by us to act on your behalf in the arranging and administration of your insurance.  In the absence of any specific acceptance communicated to us by you (whether verbal or written) you are deemed to accept our offer to act for you on the basis of these Terms, by conduct, upon your instructing us to arrange, renew or otherwise act for you in connection with insurance matters.