background2

Terms of Business

North County Brokers Limited
3D Fingal Bay Business Park, Balbriggan, Co Dublin.
Company Registration Number: 299661
T: (01) 841 1632 
F: (01) 841 1976
E: info@northcountybrokers.ie
W: www.northcountybrokers.com

Terms of Business

Effective date of this Terms of Business document is 01 May 2022.

These terms of business set out the basis on which North County Brokers Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of Aston Lark Group Limited, will provide business services to you as a client of the firm. They also contain details of our regulatory and statutory obligations and the respective duties of both the firm and you in relation to such services. North County Brokers Ltd is regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland and is a member of Brokers Ireland.

 

Authorised Status
North County Brokers Ltd is authorised by the Central Bank of Ireland as an Insurance Intermediary under the European Union (Insurance Distribution) Regulations 2018. Copies of our authorisation are available on request.  The Central Bank of Ireland holds registers of regulated firms, and you may contact them on 1890 777 777 or alternatively visit their website at www.centralbank.ie to verify our credentials.

 

Statutory Codes
North County Brokers Ltd. is subject to and complies with the Consumer Protection Code, Minimum Competency Code and the Fitness and Probity Standards as laid down by the Central Bank of Ireland. These Codes offer protection to consumers and can be found on the Central Bank of Ireland website www.centralbank.ie.

 

Services Provided
We will offer advice on a fair and personal analysis basis in relation to all classes of insurance policies. This means we will research the marketplace and providers and recommend the best product to suit your own needs. We will identify and select a suitable product producer and on receipt of your instructions we will transmit orders on your behalf to one or more product producers (a list of which is available on request). This firm does not have a ‘tied’ relationship with any institution that would compromise our ability to offer you independent advice and choice.

 

Remuneration and Fees
We are usually remunerated by commission received from the product producers for the work involved in placing an order and finalising the product with them on your behalf. A summary of our commission arrangements with product producers is available on our website. Some product producers do not pay commissions so therefore we charge an appropriate fee to reflect this.

North County Brokers Ltd is remunerated by a professional fee for the initial work activity and time spent in seeking the best terms, advice, product, and product producer for your specific needs. An administration fee is also charged for the activity involved in the renewal of the policy and also any alterations that take place during and at termination of a policy. A scale of our fees is under noted. Calculations are based on premiums inclusive of levies and taxes.

A summary of the details of all arrangements for any fee, commission, other reward, or remuneration paid or provided to the intermediary which it has agreed with Insurers or product producers is available on our website.

 

Scale of Fees

 

  Initial fee

  Renewal

  Policy Alterations/Cancellation  

 Private Motor

Up to a max of €100

Up to a max of €100

Up to a max of €40

 House

Up to a max of €60

Up to a max of €60

Up to a max of €40

 Commercial      

Up to a max of 30% of premium

Up to a max of 30% of premium

Up to a max of 30% of premium

Please note that we may apply an hourly rate in addition to broker fees as specified for particularly complex accounts and/or where court attendance may be required, and our standard hourly rates are noted below.

Director/Senior Account Handler - €350 per hour
Support Staff - €95 per hour

We reserve the right to amend these fees should the complexity of the product require a higher fee. We will confirm and agree this fee with you prior to any increased charge being applied. A fee of €20 will be charged for all duplicate documentation

 

Insurance Premium Finance
We can earn up to 10% in relation to arranging insurance premium finance on your behalf.

 

Fees & Return Premiums
In the event of a cancellation or return premium we may charge a fee on the activity which results in the return premium provided. If the cover is motor insurance the premium cannot be refunded until the Certificate of Insurance and Windscreen Disc have been received by North County Brokers Ltd.

Where a premium rebate is due to a consumer & the value of the rebate is €10 or less, we must issue the premium rebate to the consumer within 5 business days of the rebate becoming due or alternatively we can offer the choice of:

a) Receiving the premium rebate or

b) Receiving a reduction from a renewal premium or other premium currently due or

c) Making a donation of the rebate amount to a registered charity

In respect of options (b) & (c) above we must seek the client’s consent on each occasion and must maintain a record of the client’s decision.

Where a premium rebate is due to a consumer and the value of the rebate is more than €10, we must issue the premium rebate to the consumer within 5 business days of the rebate becoming due.

 

Conflict of Interests
It is the policy of North County Brokers 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 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.

 

Premium Handling
North County Brokers Ltd will accept payments in cash, by cheque/draft and by finance in respect of all classes of insurance in the circumstances permitted under our regulatory authorisations. . North County Brokers Ltd is not authorised to accept cash or negotiable instruments in any other circumstances.

Premiums are due on / or before renewal/inception date. Under the Central Bank legislation very strict rules apply in the payment of premiums to Insurance companies. We will not be able to pay premiums to insurers which have not been received from clients. Therefore, to avoid policy cancellation, premiums must be paid strictly within the credit terms, if agreed, otherwise immediately prior to cover incepting.

 

Receipts
North County Brokers shall issue a receipt for each non – negotiable instrument or payment received. These are issued with your protection in mind and should be retained by you.

 

Cancellation / Cooling Off Period

A consumer is defined by the Distance Marketing Directive, as a natural person acting for purposes outside his/her trade, business or profession. Where you qualify as a consumer under this directive you have the right to withdraw from an insurance policy which was provided at a distance (i.e., via internet or via telephone, without any face to face contact with North County Brokers Ltd) within 14 days of the start date of the policy or the date You received the policy schedule, whichever is the later, without penalty and without giving any reason under S.I. No. 853/2004 European Communities (Distance Marketing of Consumer Financial Services) Regulations 2004 – this is known as the Cooling Off Period. This right to withdraw does not apply to any insurance policy under which insurance cover is provided for less than 1 month. The right of withdrawal must be exercised by notice in writing to North County Brokers Ltd, quoting your policy number. Should this right be exercised the Insurance Company may charge a pro rata premium for the period you are on cover. Any fee or charge paid by the consumer to North County Brokers Ltd for work carried out prior to cancellation shall not be refundable. If the cover is motor insurance the premium cannot be refunded and/or issued until the Certificate of Insurance and Windscreen Disc have been received by North County Brokers Ltd. The rights under this directive do not affect Your rights as a consumer under the Consumer Insurance Contracts Act 2019.

You, the customer can cancel your policy by notice in writing at any time. Provided that all reasonable charges pertaining to costs incurred by North County Brokers Ltd 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 unless the policy is on a minimum and deposit basis, and if this is the case, no return will be allowed on the policy and this will be noted on your policy schedule. If you cancel during the first year (outside of the Cooling Off period) short term rates apply, please see policy terms and conditions. In the case of cancellation of motor insurance you must return the Certificate of Insurance and Windscreen Disc to North County Brokers Ltd. Insurance companies normally reserve the right to cancel policies at any time by giving appropriate notice to your last known address. Please refer to your policy terms and conditions.

 

Failure to pay or default

We reserve the right to instigate cancellation proceeding in the event of the following:

  • Your non-payment of the premium due at inception, renewal or following a mid-term adjustment
  • Your bank returns your cheque due to insufficient funds or any other reason
  • Non-disclosure of relevant information
  • Insurer imposed cancellation. Your insurer may cancel your policy in certain circumstances. These conditions are clearly outlined on all policy documents.

We strongly advise the client to read policy documents. To ensure continuance of cover it is vital that premiums are paid in full when they are due.

When your policy ends or is cancelled, we will send you any documentation and information that you are entitled to on request. We reserve the right to offset account credits against an outstanding balance on your account. No transfer of agency will be allowed until an account is cleared in full.

 

Your Obligations
When instructing us to place or to renew insurances, your obligations will differ depending on whether you are classed as either a consumer or a commercial client.

 

Consumer – Duty not to make a misrepresentation
If you are a consumer as defined by the Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman Act you must answer all questions posed by us or the insurer honestly and with reasonable care so as not to make a misrepresentation to insurers. Failure to comply with this duty may mean that the policy is void and the insurer may not be liable to pay all or some of your claim(s). Specific questions will be asked. Where you do not provide additional information (after being requested to do so) it can be presumed that the information previously provided remains unchanged. Please see Appendix A for Consumer Insurance Contract Act 2019 information, which provides further information relevant to You the consumer, including Yours and insurers pre and post contractual obligations.

 

Commercial Client (Non-Consumer) –Duty to disclose material facts
When instructing Us to place or to renew insurances, You have a duty of disclosure, meaning it is Your responsibility to fully disclose, in a clear and accessible manner, all material facts regarding Your insurance policy or mortgage. A material fact is any information which may influence the acceptance or assessment of Your proposal or alter the judgment of an Insurer in assessing risk. All material facts should be disclosed and if You are unsure as to whether a fact is material, it should be disclosed. This duty continues throughout the term of Your insurance.

A material change is any information which may alter the judgement of insurers that has not previously been disclosed as a material fact. Any material change that occurs after the arrangement of any insurance must be disclosed to Insurers as this duty continues throughout the term of Your insurance.

As Your circumstances change, Your needs will also change. You must advise Us of any changes and request a review of the relevant policy so that We can ensure that You are provided with up-to-date advice and a product 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.

All answers or statements given verbally on a proposal form, claim form or other document relevant to Your insurances will be Your responsibility and You should always check the accuracy of the information You provide to Us and/ or insurers. Failure to comply with Your duty of disclosure may mean that the policy is void and the insurer may not be liable to pay all or some of Your claim(s).You should seek Our advice if You are in any doubt as to Your obligations.

 

Complaints Procedure
Any complaints should be addressed in writing to Mr. John Horan, Managing Director, North County Brokers Ltd for his personal attention and marked private & confidential.

Each complaint will be acknowledged by us within 5 working days of receipt, updates will be advised in intervals of not more than 20 working days, we will endeavour to resolve the complaint within 40 business days and findings will be furnished to you within 5 working days of completion of the investigation.

In the event that you are not entirely satisfied with the firms handling of and response to your complaint or if you have not received a final response within 40 working days of the complaint being made, you may be eligible to complain to the Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman (FSPO), Lincoln House, Lincoln Place, Dublin 2 Tel: (01) 567 7000 Web: www.fspo.ie. A full copy of our complaints procedure is available on request.



Investor Compensation- Investor Compensation Company Ltd (ICCL) Scheme

North County Brokers Ltd is a member of the Investor Compensation Company Ltd (ICCL) Scheme established under the Investor Compensation Act, 1998.

The legislation provided for the establishment of a compensation scheme and to the payment in certain circumstances, of compensation to certain clients of firms (known as eligible investors) covered by the Act.

However, you should be aware that a right to compensation would only arise where client money or investment instruments held by this company 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 an eligible investor as contained in the Act.

In the event that a right to compensation is established, the amount payable is the lesser of 90% of the client’s loss, which is recognised as being eligible for compensation, or €20,000.

 

Broker Ireland Compensation Fund
As a member of Brokers Ireland, North County Brokers Ltd is also a member of the Broker Ireland. Subject to the rules of the scheme the liabilities of its member firms up to a maximum of €100,000 per client (€250,000 in aggregate) may be discharged by the Fund on its behalf if the member firm is unable to do so, where the above detailed ICCL (established by law) has failed to adequately compensate any client of the member.

 

Data Protection
Definitions
“Data Protection Laws” means:
the Data Protection Act 2018;

the General Data Protection Regulation ((EU) 2016/679) and any national implementing laws, regulations and secondary legislation as amended or updated from time to time in the Ireland (“GDPR”);

the Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) Regulations 2003 and European Communities (Electronic Communications Networks and Services) (Privacy and Electronic Communications) Regulations 2011 (“Privacy Regulations”); and any legislation which supersedes, updates or amends the GDPR, Data Protection Act 2018 or Privacy Regulations;

The terms “Controller”, “Data Subject”, “Personal Data”, “Personal Data Breach”, and “Processing” have the meanings given in the GDPR;

We are committed to keeping Personal Data confidential and process all Personal Data in accordance with the Data Protection Laws. Our Privacy Notice, which explains how and why we process Personal Data, including what rights individuals have under the Data Protection Laws can be viewed on our website or a copy can be provided on request.

We shall, and if you are a commercial client, you shall comply with all applicable requirements of the Data Protection Laws. This clause 15 is in addition to, and does not relieve, remove or replace, a party’s obligations under the Data Protection Laws.

If you are a commercial client, both parties acknowledge their intention to process the Personal Data as independent Controllers.

If you are a commercial client, where you collect Personal Data which you subsequently transfer to us in order for us to provide you with any services under this Agreement, you will ensure that:

  • all fair processing notices have been given (and/or, as applicable, valid consents obtained that have not been withdrawn) and are sufficient in scope and kept up-to-date in order to meet the transparency requirements set out in the Data Protection Laws to enable us to Process such Personal Data in accordance with this Agreement and the Data Protection Laws. Each party acknowledges and agrees that you will have met such transparency requirements by making reference to us and including a link to our Privacy Notice in the information that you provide to Data Subjects about the Processing of Personal Data under this Agreement;
  • such Personal Data is adequate, relevant and limited to what is necessary in relation to the services being provided by us;
  • such Personal Data is accurate and, where necessary, up to date;
  • such Personal Data has been collected by you lawfully and, where appropriate, the necessary consents have been obtained from the Data Subject.

If you are a commercial client, each party will promptly notify the other on receipt of any requests, inquiries or complaints from Data Subjects and/or supervisory authorities (as defined in the Data Protection Laws) received by that party which are relevant to any Personal Data Processed under this Agreement and will provide the other party with reasonable assistance, upon request, in dealing with any such requests, inquiries or complaints.

If you are a commercial client, each party shall comply with its obligations to report a Personal Data Breach relating to any Personal Data Processed under this Agreement to the appropriate supervisory authority and Data Subject(s) (where applicable) under Articles 33 and 34 of the GDPR and shall inform the other party promptly of any Personal Data Breach which is notifiable to the supervisory authority under Data Protection Laws. Without undue delay, the parties agree to provide reasonable assistance as is necessary to each other to facilitate the handling of any Personal Data Breach in an expeditious and compliant manner.

 

Data Principles
We will abide by the following principles;

  • process Personal Data lawfully, fairly, and in a transparent manner;
  • collect Personal Data for specified, explicit, and legitimate purposes and not further process it in a manner that is incompatible with those purposes;
  • ensure that Personal Data is adequate, accurate, relevant and limited to what is necessary in relation to the purposes for which it is processed;
  • Personal Data will be kept in a form which permits identification of Data Subjects for no longer than is necessary;
  • Personal Data is processed in a manner that ensures appropriate security.

Our GDPR Owner can be contacted at Unit 3D Fingal Bay Business Park, Balbriggan, Co Dublin or info@northcountybrokers.ie.

 

Appendix A – Consumer Insurance Contracts Act 2019

This section, and the duties and rights under same, applies only to policies governed by Irish Law, where the policyholder is a consumer as per definition set out below – it does not apply to any other policyholder.

 

1. DEFINITION

The following definitions are set out in the Consumer Insurance Contracts Act, 2019:
“consumer”, in relation to a financial service, means—

(a) (i) a natural person, not acting in the course of business,

(ii) a sole trader, partnership, trust club or charity (not being a body corporate), with an annual turnover in its previous financial year (within the meaning of section 288 of the Act of 2014) of €3 million or less, or

(iii) an incorporated body that—

(I) had an annual turnover in its previous financial year (within the meaning of section 288 of the Act of 2014) of €3 million or less, and

(II) is not a body corporate that is a member of a group of companies (within the meaning of section 8 of the Act of 2014) with a combined annual turnover (in the previous financial year (within the meaning of section 288 of the Act of 2014) of the group of companies), of greater than €3 million,
that—
(A) is a customer of a financial service provider,

(B) is a person or body to whom a financial service provider has offered to provide a financial service, or

(C) has sought the provision of a financial service,


(b) a consumer who was, in relation to a credit agreement, a customer of the financial service provider in a case where a credit servicing firm undertakes credit servicing in respect of the credit agreement concerned,

(c) an actual or potential beneficiary of a financial service, or

(d) an employee or a former employee entitled to benefit from an income continuance plan;
“consumer”, in relation to a pension product, means an actual or potential beneficiary of an occupational pensions scheme, a trust RAC or a PRSA who believes they have suffered financial loss because of maladministration of the scheme, trust or PRSA, as the case may be;

 

2. NEW BUSINESS & RENEWAL
You may cancel a contract of insurance, by giving notice in writing to the insurer, within 14 working days after the date You were informed that the contract is concluded. This does not affect the notice periods already provided under European Union (Insurance and Reinsurance) Regulations 2015 ( S.I. No. 485 of 2015 ) or the European Communities (Distance Marketing of Consumer Financial Services) Regulations 2004 ( S.I. No. 853 of 2004 ) which is 30 days in respect of life policies, irrespective of whether the sale took place on a non-face to face basis, and 14 days in respect of general policies only on sales that took place on a non-face to face basis (distance sales). The giving of notice of cancellation by You will have the effect of releasing You from any further obligation arising from the contract of insurance. The insurer cannot impose any costs on You other than the cost of the premium for the period of cover. This right to cancel does not apply where, in respect of life assurance the contract is for a duration of six months or less, or in respect of general insurance, the duration of the contract is less than one month.

Insurers may also request an update on information You previously provided, which the insurer shall specifically describe and provide You with a written copy of the matter previously disclosed. You must respond honestly and with reasonable care to any such requests. Where the You continue to pay the premium, without response, it shall be presumed that the information previously provided has not altered. Renewal of the contract by insurers shall not be taken to remedy any previous breach of Your duty of disclosure arising under this Act.

 

3. PAYMENT OF PREMIUM
You are under a duty to pay Your premium within a reasonable time, or otherwise in accordance with the terms of the contract of insurance.

 

4. ALTERATION OF RISK
Any clause in a contract of insurance that refers to a “material change” will be interpreted as being a change that takes the risk outside what was in the reasonable contemplation of the contracting parties when the contract was concluded.

 

5. CLAIMS HANDLING
You must notify the insurer of a claim within a reasonable time, or otherwise in accordance with the terms of the contract of insurance. If You become aware after a claim is made of information that would either support or prejudice the claim, You are under a duty to disclose it. (The insurer is under the same duty). If, in respect of the insurance contract the insurer is not obliged to pay the full claim settlement amount until any repair, replacement or reinstatement work has been completed and specified documents for the work have been furnished to the insurer, the claim settlement deferment amount cannot exceed:

(a) 5% of the claim settlement amount where the claim settlement amount is less than €40,000, or

(b) 10% of the claim settlement amount where the claim settlement amount is more than €40,000.

An insurer may refuse a claim made by You under a contract of insurance where there is a change in the risk insured, including as described in an “Alteration of Risk” clause, and the circumstances have so changed that it has effectively changed the risk to one which the insurer has not agreed to cover. You must cooperate with the insurer in an investigation of insured events including responding to reasonable requests for information in an honest and reasonably careful manner and must notify the insurer of the occurrence of an insured event in a reasonable time. If You make a false or misleading claim in any material respect (and know it to be false or misleading or consciously disregards whether it is) the insurer is entitled to refuse to pay and to terminate the contract.

Where an insurer becomes aware that a consumer has made a fraudulent claim, they may notify the consumer advising that they are voiding the contract of insurance, and it will be treated as being terminated from the date of the submission of the fraudulent claim. The insurer may refuse all liability in respect of any claim made after the date of the fraudulent act, and the insurer is under no obligation to return any of the premiums paid under the contract. A court of competent jurisdiction can reduce the pay-out to You if You are in breach of Your duties under the Act, in proportion to the breach involved.


 

¹  I do not wish to be contacted or receive information on products & services available from North County Brokers Ltd.    ☐