Terms of Business

Oaktree Financial Services Limited trading as Oaktree Financial Services, Oaktree Mortgage Services, Oaktree Insurance, Oaktree Mortgages with Registered Office at 20 Kent Street, Fermoy, Co Cork, registered in Ireland under number 485462. Phone: 025 30588 or 1890 876 077. Fax: 1890 876 078. Email: info@oaktreefinancial.ie

Oaktree Financial Services Limited trading as Oaktree Financial Services, Oaktree Mortgage Services, Oaktree Insurance, Oaktree Mortgages

These Terms of Business set out the general terms under which our firm will provide business services to you and the respective duties and responsibilities of both the firm and you in relation to such services. Please ensure that you read these terms thoroughly and if you have any queries we will be happy to clarify them. If any material changes are made to these terms we will notify you.

Authorisation with the Central Bank of Ireland

Oaktree Financial Services Limited trading as Oaktree Financial Services, Oaktree Mortgage Services, Oaktree Insurance, Oaktree Mortgages is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland as an insurance intermediary registered under the European Communities (Insurance Mediation) Regulations, 2005; as an Investment Intermediary authorised under the Investment Intermediaries Act, 1995 and as a Mortgage Intermediary authorised under the Consumer Credit Act, 1995, and as a Mortgage Credit Intermediary under  the European Union (Consumer Mortgage Credit Agreements) Regulations 2016.

Copies of our regulatory authorisations are available on request. The Central Bank of Ireland holds registers of regulated firms. You may contact the Central Bank of Ireland on 1890 777 777 or alternatively visit their website at www.centralbank.ie to verify our credentials.

Codes of Conduct

Oaktree Financial Services Limited is subject to the Consumer Protection Code, Minimum Competency Code and Fitness & Probity Standards which offer protection to consumers. These Codes can be found on the Central Bank’s website www.centralbank.ie.

Our Services

Oaktree Financial Services Limited is a member of the Professional Insurance Brokers Association (PIBA). As a member of PIBA we must be in a position to place insurance with at least five insurers of the relevant form (life/non-life) and therefore can generally give consumers greater choice than agents and tied agents.

Our principal business is to provide advice and arrange transactions on behalf of clients in relation to life & pensions/mortgages/general insurance products. A full list of insurers, product producers and lending agencies with which we deal is available on request.

Oaktree Financial Services Limited acts as an Independent Broker which means that:

  1. a) The principal regulated activities of the firm are provided on the basis of a fair analysis of the market; and
  2. b) You have the option to pay in full for our services by means of a fee.

 

Fair Analysis

The concept of fair analysis is derived from the Insurance Mediation Directive.  It describes the extent of the choice of products and providers offered by an intermediary within a particular category of life assurance, general insurance, mortgages, and/ or a specialist area.  The number of contracts and providers considered must be sufficiently large to enable an intermediary to recommend a product that would be adequate to meet a client’s needs.

The number of providers that constitutes ‘sufficiently large’ will vary depending on the number of providers operating in the market for a particular product or service and their relative importance in and share of that market.  The extent of fair analysis must be such that could be reasonably expected of a professional conducting business, taking into account the accessibility of information and product placement to intermediaries and the cost of the search.

In order to ensure that the number of contracts and providers is sufficiently large to constitute a fair analysis of the market, we will consider the following criteria:

  • the needs of the customer,
  • the size of the customer order,
  • the number of providers in the market that deal with brokers,
  • the market share of each of those providers,
  • the number of relevant products available from each provider,
  • the availability of information about the products,
  • the quality of the product and service provided by the provider,
  • cost, and
  • any other relevant consideration.

 

Life & Pensions

Oaktree Financial Services Limited provides life assurance and pensions 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 the your needs.

We will provide assistance to you for any queries you may have in relation to the policies or in the event of a claim during the life of the policies and we will explain to you the various restrictions, conditions and exclusions attached to your policy. However, 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 PHI and serious illness policies.

Specifically on the subject of permanent health insurance policies it is our policy to explain to you a) the meaning of disability as defined in the policy; b) the benefits available under the policy; c) the general exclusions that apply to the policy; and d) the reductions applied to the benefit where there are disability payments from other sources.

For a serious illness policy, we will explain clearly to you the restrictions, conditions and general exclusions that attach to that policy.
We provide advice on the following product providers:

  • New Ireland Assurance 
  • Royal London
  • Aviva Life & Pensions
  • Zurich Life
  • Irish Life
  • Friends First
  • Pulse Insurance

 

Non-Life

Oaktree Financial Services Limited can provide advice on and arrange products from the following range: household, commercial motor, health, travel, gadget, pet, car hire excess, wedding and motor breakdown insurance. Oaktree Financial Services Limited provides general insurance on a limited analysis basis (providing services on the basis of a limited number of contracts and product producers available on the market).

We provide advice on the following product providers:

  • Aviva General Insurance
  • Irish Life Health Insurance
  • Blue Insurances Limited
  • Frost Insurances Ltd
  • April (Insurety) Ireland Ltd
  • Cover Centre Insurance Ltd
  • Motorist Insurance Services Ltd
  • Alan B. Kidd & Co Ltd
  • Wealth Options Ltd
  • NewCourt Retirement Fund Managers Ltd
  • BCP Asset Management
  • Blackbee Investments Ltd
  • Cantor Fitzgerald Ltd
  • Merrion Stockbrokers Ltd

 We will also offer assistance to you in relation to processing claims on policies taken out with us and in seeking renewal terms on your cover.

To ensure continuity of cover where you have an existing policy which is due to expire and where we have been unable to contact you, we may put continuing cover in force whilst awaiting your instruction. You will be liable for any premiums payable to the relevant insurer for the period of time between renewal and when we receive your instruction. You have the right not to avail of this service.

Deposits

Oaktree Financial Services Limited can provide advice on and arrange on Bank Deposits. Oaktree Financial Services Limited on a limited analysis basis providing services on the basis of a limited number of contracts and product producers available on the market. We provide advice on the following product providers:

  • Permanent TSB Bank.
  • EBS

 

Health

Oaktree Financial Services Limited can provide advice on and arrange on Health Insurance. Oaktree Financial Services Limited provides Health Insurance on a limited analysis basis providing services on the basis of a limited number of contracts and product producers available on the market.

We provide advice on the following product providers:

  • Irish Life Health Insurance

 

Mortgages

Through the lenders or other undertakings with which we hold an agency, Oaktree Financial Services Limited can provide advice on and arrange mortgage products from the following range: fixed-rate loans, variable rate mortgages, capital & interest mortgages, interest only mortgages and residential investment property.

Oaktree Financial Services Limited can provide advice on and arrange mortgages. Oaktree Financial Services Limited provides mortgages on a limited analysis basis providing services on the basis of a limited number of contracts and product producers available on the market. We provide advice on the following product providers:

  • Haven Mortgages
  • ICS Building Society
  • KBC Bank Ireland
  • Permanent TSB
  • Ulster Bank
  • Pepper Home Loans

 

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 our request.

Money Laundering

Oaktree Financial Services Limited reserves the right to request any facts about a client which it reasonably believes it needs to know in order to comply with the Anti-Money Laundering Provisions of the Criminal Justice Act, 1994 (as amended) and the Financing of Terrorism Act 2005.

Disclosure of Information

Any failure to disclose material information may invalidate your claim and render your policy void.

Oaktree Financial Services Limited is remunerated by commission and other payments from product producers or lenders on the completion of business. You may choose to pay in full for our services by means of a fee. Where we receive recurring commission, this forms part of the remuneration for initial advice provided. We reserve the right to charge additional fees if the number of hours relating to on-going advice/assistance exceeds 2 hours.

In certain circumstances, it will be necessary to charge a fee for services provided. These are listed below for life, non-life business and Standard PRSAs. In other circumstances where fees are chargeable or where you choose to pay in full for our service by fee, we will notify you in writing in advance and agree the scale of fees to be charged if different from fees outlined below.

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 firm unless an arrangement to the contrary is made.

Life Fees

You may elect to deal with us on a fee basis.

Hourly Rate:

Principles / Directors            €150

Senior Advisers                       €125

Associates                                €80

Support staff                            €50

Additional fees may be payable for complex cases or to reflect value, specialist skills or urgency. We will notify you in advance and agree the scale of fees to be charged.

Personal Retirement Savings Accounts (PRSAs) – Fees

Where advice is requested for PRSAs, the following hourly fees will apply:

Advisor fees:            €125 – €150 per hour.

Support staff:          €50 – €80 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.

Non-Life Remuneration

Oaktree Financial Services Limited is remunerated by commission from insurers on completion of business. Details of this remuneration are available on request.

Non-Life Insurance Motor Household Other
*New Business

Renewal Set up Charge

Up to €100

Up to €100

Up to €100

Up to €100

Up to €1,000

Up to €1,000

Policy Amendment

Cancellation Charge

Duplicate documentation

Up to €30

Up to €30

Up to €30

Up to €30

€25

Up to €100

Up to €100

€25


*Please note the New Business and Renewal standard set up charge is non-refundable.

Premium Rebates

We will charge a fee of up to 25% of the rebate allowed by the Product Producer on Motor Business and 25% on Non Motor Business in the event of Policy alterations or cancellation. The minimum charge will be €25, subject to your written agreement at the time of the transaction.

Mortgages

We may receive up to 1.5% (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.

We may charge a fee of up to €1,000 for advising on a mortgage application, this fee is non-refundable.  This is not in any way an indication of mortgage/loan approval.  This fee will be advised to you.

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 will charge you an arrangement fee of between €250 and €1,000 for our services depending on the complexity of the case.

If a mortgage is redeemed in part or in full within the commission claw back period, a fee will apply. This fee will be notified to you in writing. This fee covers expenses and loss of commission. After the commission claw back period is covered, no fee will apply if the mortgage is redeemed for any reason whatsoever.

Premium Handling And Receipts

When receiving and transmitting orders in relation to insurance policies Oaktree Financial Services Limited may accept payment from clients payable to itself where an insurance undertaking has invited renewal of a policy of insurance, or the proposal for insurance has been accepted by an insurance undertaking. A Section 30 receipt is issued for all monies received. Oaktree Financial Services Limited shall issue a receipt for each non-negotiable or negotiable instrument or payment received. This is required pursuant to Section 30 of the "Investment Intermediaries Act, 1995" These are issued with your protection in mind and should be stored safely.

Regular Reviews

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 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.

Conflicts of interest

It is the policy of our firm to avoid conflicts of interest in providing services to you. However where an unavoidable conflict of interest arises we will advise you of this in writing before providing you with any service.

Default on payments by clients

Our firm 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 firm will seek reimbursement for all payments made to insurers on behalf of clients where the firm 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.

Consequences Of Defaulting

Under current legislation, very strict rules apply to the payment to insurance companies. Oaktree Financial Services Limited will not be able to pay premiums to insurers which have not been received from clients, with the result that cancellation instructions will be given to insurers in the absence of payment of the premium in full. Insurance premiums not received within 10 business days of the start date of a policy will result in the policy been cancelled.

Complaints

We ask that you make any complaint against our firm, relating to services provided by us, in writing. We will acknowledge your complaint within 5 business days and we will fully investigate it. On completion of our investigation, we will provide you with a written report of the outcome. In the event that you are still dissatisfied with our handling of or response to your complaint, you are entitled to refer the matter to the Financial Services Ombudsman or the Pensions Ombudsman. A full copy of our complaints procedure is available on request.

Insurer Security

We do not and cannot guarantee the financial security of any Insurer. This is a matter for the Regulator in the insurers home country. If you have any concerns about the security offered, please contact us immediately. A current list of all Insurers with whom we hold an agency appointment is available on request and displayed in our offices.

Duty Of Disclosure To Insurers And Duty Of “Utmost Good Faith”

The law in the Republic of Ireland deems insurance to be a special class of contract which imposes onerous duties upon prospective insured’s (clients) and their agents (us), who are obliged to act with “utmost good faith” towards Insurers at all times. You are obliged to disclose to Insurers, before the contract is concluded, all material information. If you are unsure as to what constitutes material information or whether you should disclose something, please disclose anyway. The obligation of disclosure is not limited to material information of which you are aware. It extends to those matters of which you ought to be aware in the ordinary course of your business. If there is any breach of the duty to act with “utmost good faith” or failure to disclose any material information to Insurers, the Insurers will be entitled to void the policy of insurance from inception. In effect this means that Insurers would be entitled to act as if the policy had never existed, decline to pay any claims, and to seek recovery of all claims already paid under the policy, although the Insurers would be obliged to repay the premium in most circumstances.

Your Responsibilities

The duties of utmost good faith and disclosure apply when you take out your insurance policy, throughout the life of that policy, when you renew your policy, to any claim you may submit and throughout the claims process, and to any situations in which you are required, under the terms of the policy or otherwise, to provide information to Insurers. Failure to disclose any material information may result in the policy cover being void from inception and in claims not being paid.

Insurers now share all claims information on the InsuranceLink database. This reports on all claims and will be used by Insurers to verify correct disclosure of claims information. If you fail to disclose any claims information, it may result in the Insurer voiding policy cover from inception and your claim not being paid.In completing a proposal or claim form, or providing other information, by whatever means, relating to an insurance policy, the accuracy of all answers, statements and/or information will be your sole responsibility. Failure to disclose any material information may result in the policy cover being void from inception and in claims not being paid. Where you are in any doubt, you should seek our advice.It is essential that we are notified immediately of any new claims, or circumstances, which could give rise to a claim. When you notify us, you must include all material facts concerning the claim. The policy wordings will describe in detail the procedures and conditions in connection with making a claim. Failure to give notification of any incident or claim may result in claims not being paid. Again where you are in any doubt, you should seek our advice.

Cancellation

We reserve the right to cancel your policy in certain circumstances, for example the non-payment of premiums, direct debit default, or misrepresentation/non-disclosure of material facts and relevant information.

You, the client, can cancel your policy by notice in writing at any time. Provided that all reasonable Fees & Charges due to Oaktree Financial Services have been paid and provided that no incident giving rise to a claim has occurred in the current period of insurance, you will be entitled to a proportionate return of the premium for the un-expired period of insurance. The exceptions to this general principle are as follows: (1) if the policy is on a minimum and deposit basis, no return will be allowed on the policy and this will be noted on your policy schedule; (2) if you cancel a property insurance policy during the first year of insurance, no return premium will be allowed by your Insurer and (3) if you cancel any other form of policy during the first year, short term rates will apply; please see your policy terms & conditions for details. Please note that your Insurer may require you to return your policy documents prior to cancellation. In the case of cancellation of motor insurance you must return the Certificate of Insurance and Windscreen Disc to Oaktree Financial Services before the policy can be cancelled.

Data Protection

Oaktree Financial Services Limited t/a Oaktree Financial Services/Oaktree Mortgage Services complies with the requirements of 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. The data will be processed only in ways compatible with the purposes for which it was given. We would also like to keep you informed of mortgage, insurance, investment and any other services provided by us or associated companies with which we have a formal business arrangement; which we think may be of interest to you. We would like to contact you by way of letter, email or telephone call. If you do not wish to receive such marketing information please tick the box in the Terms of Business acknowledgement letter.

We may receive referrals from such firms and may advise them of any transactions arranged for you.

Compensation Scheme

We are members of the Investor Compensation Scheme operated by the Investor Compensation Company Ltd. See below for details.

Investor Compensation Scheme

The Investor Compensation Act, 1998 provides for the establishment of a compensation scheme and the payment, in certain circumstances, of compensation to certain clients (known as eligible investors) of authorised investment firms, as defined in that Act.

The Investor Compensation Company Ltd. (ICCL) was established under the 1998 Act to operate such a compensation scheme and our firm is a member of this scheme.

Compensation may be payable where money or investment instruments owed or belonging to clients and held, administered or managed by the firm cannot be returned to those clients for the time being and where there is no reasonably foreseeable opportunity of the firm being able to do so.

A right to compensation will arise only:

- If the client is an eligible investor as defined in the Act; and

- If it transpires that the firm is not in a position to return client money or investment instruments owned or belonging to the clients of the firm; and

- To the extent that the client’s loss is recognised for the purposes of the Act.

 

Where an entitlement to compensation is established, the compensation payable will be the lesser of:

- 90% of the amount of the client’s loss which is recognised for the purposes of the Investor Compensation Act, 1998; or

- Compensation of up to €20,000.

 

For further information, contact the Investor Compensation Company Ltd. at (01) 224 4955