From Independent Women
From 31st July, firms regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority must ensure that their products and services conform to a higher duty of care for retail clients. This is called the Consumer Duty.
The overarching principle is simple: to ensure good outcomes for clients, by acting in good faith, avoiding foreseeable harm, and enabling and supporting clients to pursue their financial objectives. It is a positive step, designed to ensure that clients have the right advice and care throughout the relationship with their advisor, and holds our profession to a higher standard, which is good for all.
For our clients, the new duty means you have greater comfort in the standard you can expect from us. If we fall short in any respect, we welcome your feedback at any time so that we may improve and ensure your experience is always positive.
Although this does not mean a significant change for our firm – high standards and providing an excellent experience for our clients have always been part of our core values – we acknowledge that self-reflection is always worthwhile in order that we may continually improve.
At IW and Mazars, our team has been busy reviewing our practices and preparing for the new duty when it comes into force at the end of the month. We have carried out a comprehensive review of our systems, processes and communications, and identified some areas for improvement, particularly taking into account feedback which our clients have provided to us over recent months.
Although these changes are largely behind the scenes and the difference on the outside may be subtle, we would like to highlight the spirit of the Duty, which is that you receive good outcomes. For us, this means that we guide you towards achieving your financial goals, whilst providing you with the information you need in a way that suits you, good service, and fair value. If you ever feel that we could do better, we gladly welcome your feedback and invite you always to let us know. We will formally ask you throughout the year for your thoughts via our insights survey, but please always feel free to send us any comments by emailing us at email@example.com. Your comments are confidential and you will receive a prompt response and action.