TERMS OF BUSINESS
Our Terms of Business document outlines the services we will provide. It is an important document, so please ensure that you take time to read it carefully.
If there is anything in this document that you are unsure about, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.
WHO WE ARE
Roots Insurance Brokers Limited. Roots Contractor Insurance and Roots IR35 Status Services are trading styles of Roots Insurance Brokers Limited.
Roots Insurance Brokers Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Our registered number is: 930814.
Roots Insurance Brokers Limited is an approved Lloyds Coverholder. This means we are an intermediary and not an insurer.
Roots does not have 10% or more of the voting rights in any insurer.
In the absence of an agreement to the contrary this document sets out the terms of our relationship with you (our ‘client’) for our services set out herein.
From time to time we may need to update our Terms of Business Agreement (TOBA) to reflect changes in the legal and regulatory environment in which we operate and to ensure that any pertinent information contained therein remains current. Current versions of this document are available on our website (www.rootsinsurance.co.uk) and/or upon request.
WHO REGULATES US
Roots Insurance Brokers Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).
- Roots Insurance Brokers Limited, Jason Works, Clarence Street, Loughborough, Leicestershire, LE11 1DX.
The FCA regulates financial services.
- Roots Insurance Brokers Limited’s FCA registration number is 930814, and its permitted business is advising on and arranging general insurance.
Roots Insurance Brokers Limited is authorised and regulated by the FCA in respect of consumer credit activities. You can check this on the FCA’s Register by visiting register.fca.org.uk or by contacting them on 0845 606 1234.
WHO REGULATES US
We offer a range of non-investment general insurance products and we are not tied to any one insurer. Where we offer policies as part of specific schemes we act as an agent of the insurer. We follow the rules and principles established by the FCA for our general business activities. Please contact us for a full and current list of the insurers we use or used at a specific time.
We do not source the market to find an insurance product that is suitable to your needs and provide a personal recommendation, nor do we offer products from multiple insurers. All products are provided on a non-advised basis and are available on a take it or leave it basis from a single insurer. We can advise if the products we offer are suitable for your requirements.
FEES & COSTS – INSURANCES
We arrange the policy with the insurer on your behalf. You do not pay us a fee for doing this. We receive commission from the insurer which is a percentage of the total annual premium.
We may also receive commission for any finance agreement entered into by you for the payment of your premium.
You have the right to request details of all insurance commissions earned by us. If appropriate, and with your consent, we may receive a fee and commission.
We provide services to insurers that are not directly related to the services provided to you and we receive usual and customary remuneration in recognition of those services. This remuneration may be revenue based upon the volume or profitability of insurance business placed with a given insurer over a specified period. These payments recognise the services we provide to the insurer over that given period. It may be appropriate and for your benefit for us to use another Intermediary to assist us in fulfilling your insurance requirements. These companies may receive usual and customary remuneration for the services they provide.
CANCELLATION RIGHTS & REFUNDS
If you decide that for any reason a policy does not meet your needs then please inform us within the fourteen (14) day cooling off period which commences on the date of inception or renewal. On the condition that no claims have been made or are pending we will refund your premium in full.
If you wish to cancel a policy after the fourteen (14) day cooling off period, you can do so at any time by giving us notice to cancel. You will receive a pro-rata refund of premium providing no claims have been made or are pending, minus the deduction of a cancellation fee. Notice of cancellation is deemed to be served as soon as it is post ed or sent to us, in the case of email on the day it is sent, or the date of the telephone or live chat conversation.
A cancellation fee of £15.00 per policy will be applied to each and every cancellation outside of the fourteen (14) day cooling off period. We will refund you the pro rata amount for each full month of the policy that remains, minus the deduction of the cancellation fee. We will confirm in writing the breakdown of the pro rata refund you are to receive, how you will receive this, and the timescale for this.
We will always contact you via email, or if email is not possible in writing or by telephone, to inform you that your policy is up for renewal by email at least thirty (30) days and then fourteen (14) days before your renewal date. This correspondence will include details of the policies that you hold as well as the renewal premium for the forthcoming year. If you do not wish to renew your policy, you must inform us prior to the renewal date.
All automatic renewals are based upon the details we already hold on file, including turnover, occupation and number of employees, and will maintain the levels of cover held for the previous year. If any details have changed or you require any changes to the levels of cover you hold, it is your responsibility to contact us and inform us of these details.
For annual policies paid up front in one lump sum: You give your consent to the contract being automatically renewed, without further reference to you, up to seven (7) days prior to the renewal date. We will do this by using the valid payment details provided previously. If we are not able to take payment automatically for any reason (i.e. if your card declines, your payment details have changed, or if your bank has issued a new card to you in the past year and the payment details we hold are no longer valid), we will notify you immediately. If you did not pay for your policy using a debit card or credit card (i.e. you paid by BACs transfer or cheque), then this automatic process will not apply and we will contact you by telephone.
OUR RESPONSIBILITIESPreparing/Gathering Information
We will act as your agent and provide a quote based on your business needs/requirements as stated by you. Roots Insurance Brokers policies are purchased on a non-advised basis meaning it is up to you to decide if the policy is suitable for your business. However, we will answer any questions you may have on the proposed cover, its benefits, restrictions, exclusions and conditions.Placing Insurance
We will confirm cover arranged on your behalf in writing and identify the insurer(s). If we are unable to fulfil your instructions, for any reason, we will bring this to your immediate attention.Market Security
We will assess the financial soundness of the proposed insurers in conjunction with your quote using public information including that provided by recognised rating agencies. However, we will not in any circumstances guarantee or otherwise warrant the solvency of any insurer or market. As a consequence, the decision regarding the suitability of any insurer rests with you. If you have any concerns regarding any insurers chosen for your insurance requirements you must advise us as soon as possible and we will discuss them with you. All our products we place are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).Documentation
Unless otherwise agreed we will send you documentation confirming the basis of cover secured on your behalf, including details of the insurers, with confirmation of receipt of payment, where applicable, showing separately all amounts payable. We will send you any policy documents and, if applicable, any amendments or endorsements to your policy, as soon as reasonably practicable.Claims
Roots Insurance Brokers do not handle claims. All claims are dealt with by you with insurers directly. We will provide guidance and support as requested. All policy documents clearly highlight the contact details to make a claim.Electronic Communications
We may communicate with each other by electronic mail, sometimes attaching further electronic data, where we have each expressed a wish for that to happen. By consenting to this method of communication, you and we accept the inherent risks (including the security risks of interception of or unauthorised access to such communications, the risks of corruption of such communications and the risks of viruses or other harmful devices). Notwithstanding that we and you have reasonable virus checking procedures on our systems, you will be responsible for virus checking all electronic communications sent to you. You will also be responsible for checking that messages received are complete. In the event of a dispute neither of us will challenge the legal evidential standing of an electronic document and our system shall be deemed the definitive record of electronic communications and documentation.
YOUR RESPONSIBILITIESQuote Information
You will be required to answer questions relating to your business in order for us to generate a quote for your cover. We will provide guidance but we are not able to answer any questions about your business on your behalf. We provide a non-advised insurance sale which means that it is up to you to decide if the policy is suitable and meets your requirements.Fair Presentation of the Risk
As a result of the Insurance Act 2015, significant changes have been made to the disclosure requirements that affects every business policy placed, renewed or amended from the 12th August 2016. Quite simply, this modernises insurance law and aims to make recovery from an insurer fairer and simpler in the e vent of a claim.
The Act imposes an obligation on all policyholders to ‘make a fair presentation of the risk’ to the insurer. A fair presentation is one that discloses, in a manner that is reasonably clear and accessible, every material circumstance which is known, or ought to be known, by the policyholder’s senior management, or those responsible for arranging insurance, following a reasonable search.
A material circumstance means anything which would influence the judgement of a prudent insurer in determining whether to take the risk and, if so, on what terms. There is no specific limitation on what constitutes a material circumstance, but it would typically include any factors relating to the risk to be insured including prior claims, your financial history, convictions of key personnel and your business activities.
This requirement does not stop once insurance cover is in place as you are under a continuing obligation to notify any material circumstance and alterations to risk as described above. The duty arises again if you wish to make changes to the policy so that the insurer takes additional risk, when there is an extension of the policy period and when a policy condition requires you to advise your insurer of a specific increase or alteration in risk. The duty then arises again during the renewal process.If You Fail to Make a Fair Presentation of the Risk
If we establish that you deliberately or recklessly failed to present the risk to us fairly, we may treat this policy as if it never existed and refuse to make any payment under it. You must reimburse all payments already made by us and we will be entitled to retain all premiums paid.
If we establish that you failed to present the risk to us fairly but that your failure was not deliberate or reckless, the remedy we will have available to us will depend upon what we would have done had you made a fair presentation of the risk, as follows:
- If we would not have provided this policy, we may treat it as if it never existed and refuse to make any payment under it. You must reimburse all payments already made by us. We will refund any premiums you have paid
- If we would have provided this policy on different terms (other than as to premium), we will treat it as if it had been provided on such different terms from the start of the period of insurance. This may result in us making no payment for a particular claim or loss. You must reimburse any payments made by us that we would not have paid if such terms had been in effect
- If we would have provided this policy but charged a higher premium, we may reduce the amount we pay for any claim or loss in the proportion that the premium you have paid bears to the premium we would have charged if you had fairly presented the risk to us. This remedy may apply in addition to the above.
You are responsible for reviewing the evidence of insurance cover to confirm that it accurately reflects the cover, conditions, limits and other terms that you require. Particular attention should be paid to any policy conditions and warranties, as failure to comply may invalidate your cover, and the claims notification provisions. If there are any discrepancies, you should consult us immediately. Claims may be made against a policy long after its expiry date. It is important therefore, that you keep your policy documents in a secure place.Claims
You are responsible for notifying claims or potential circumstances that may give rise to a claim. To ensure full protection under your policy you should familiarise yourself with cover conditions or other procedures immediately relating to claims and the notification of those claims. Failure to adhere to the notification requirements particularly the timing of notification, as set out in the policy document, may entitle insurers to deny your claim. In presenting a claim it is your responsibility to disclose all facts, which are material to the claim.Changes in Circumstances
You will advise us as soon as reasonably practicable of any changes in your circumstances that may affect the services to be provided by us or the cover provided under your insurance policy.UK Anti Money Laundering Regulations
We are subject to the provisions of the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) and the Terrorism Act. We may request evidence of a clients identity at the start of a business relationship. We are obliged to report to the Serious Organised Crimes Agency (SOCA) any situation giving rise to knowledge or suspicion of money laundering and we are prohibited from disclosing any such report.
OTHER IMPORTANT INFORMATION
PROVISION OF INFORMATION
All activities undertaken by us as outlined in this document are provided by us for your exclusive use and all data, recommendations, proposals and other information provided by us in connection with our services are for your sole use. This does not apply in relation to the provision of a confirmation of cover letter or other such document.
PAYMENT OF PREMIUM
You accept that the settlement of all monies due in accordance with the provision of this policy is at the point of purchase. Failure to meet the payment terms may lead to insurers cancelling your policy. In the event of nonpayment we are under no obligation to pay a premium by the payment date to insurers on your behalf.
To make sure you get the best offer from insurers or third parties involved in your insurance, i.e. finance providers, now or at any renewal or at any time and to protect their customers from fraud and to verify your identity, they may use publicly available data which they obtain from a variety of sources, including a credit reference agency and other external organisations. Their search will appear on your credit report whether or not your applications proceed.
As well as these searches they or we may use a credit check to ascertain the most appropriate payment options for you. This credit check will also appear on your credit report whether or not your applications proceed. Unless you contact us to confirm you do not wish us to carry out these searches we will assume your consent has been given and proceed as above.
We will hold client monies in line with a strict agency agreement known as a ‘Risk Transfer’, which is when an insurance intermediary such as us acts as agent for an insurer to receive and handle premiums and premium refunds. The insurer bears the risk for any losses that may arise from the failure of an intermediary to make a transfer of premiums, claims money or premium refunds. Such failure could occur, for example, because it is lost through either party’s insolvency. Any interest we earn on client money and any investment returns will be retained by us for our own use.
In some cases your premium may be paid to someone other than your insurer - for instance we may pay your premium to another broker who has arranged the policy. If this is the case we will use appropriate skill, care and judgment in our selection of third parties in order to ensure adequate protection of client money.
We will treat any information in our possession, which relates to your business as confidential and, where relevant, in accordance with data protection legislation. It will be necessary, however, for us to disclose information that you consider confidential to insurers or other parties, when acting on your behalf, where we reasonably consider such information to be material to the risks being covered. Likewise, we may disclose to third parties certain industry wide statistics or other information, which may include information relating to you. Any sensitive information will be handled appropriately and personal information will not be used or disclosed unless we have consent or we have another lawful basis to use or disclose it under data protection legislation. In the course of arranging payment schemes with payment providers we will pass relevant information to them. Payment providers may pass information about your payment record to credit reference and sanction search agencies.
PERSONAL DATA COMPLAINT
If your complaint is related to how your personal data has been processed and you are not satisfied with the response from us, you have the right to complain to the Information Commissioners Office (ICO) who is the regulator for data protection in the United Kingdom.
ADDRESSING FINANCIAL CRIME
The FCA, as part of our responsibility to ensure the integrity of the UK Financial Services Market requires us to have adequate systems and controls in place to prevent the furtherance of Financial Crime. All transactions relating to our services provided are covered by, and adhere to, the Money Laundering regulations and Proceeds of Crime Act. Our responsibilities include, but are not limited to, verifying the identity and address of our customers. Identity verification checks may include electronic searches through the Electronic Identification Verification Service, electoral roll and use of credit reference agencies.
PROFESSIONAL INDEMNITY INSURANCE
We maintain Professional Indemnity Insurance, as required by the Regulator governing our business practices and our liability is limited to liability for direct losses arising in contract except where death or personal injury arises from our negligence or as otherwise preserved under statute.
CONFLICTS OF INTEREST
We are committed to the identification and fair management of any conflict(s) of interest which may arise in the provision of our services. We will endeavour to identify and manage conflicts of interest fairly, both between us and our clients and any other parties, and between any clients. Our conflicts of interest policy is available upon request.
THIRD PARTY RIGHTS
Unless otherwise agreed between us in writing no terms of this Agreement is enforceable under the Contracts (Rights of Third parties) Act 1999.
THE LAW THAT WE OPERATE UNDER
All of our agreements provided are governed and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales, in relation to any dispute. For your protection you agree to submit to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the English courts.
FINANCIAL SERVICES COMPENSATION SCHEME (FSCS)
If you make a valid claim against us in respect of the insurance we arrange for you and we are unable to meet our liabilities in full, you may be entitled to redress from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). This depends on the type of business and the circumstances of the claim. Insurance arranging and advising is covered for 90% of the amount without any upper limit. For compulsory classes of insurance, insurance advising and arranging is covered for 100% of the claim without any upper limit. Further information about compensation arrangements is available from the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) and the Financial Services Authority.
All clients who purchase FCA regulated insurance for themselves as a private individual (“Consumers”) and “Commercial” clients where the business for which they are purchasing insurance has a turnover of less than £1M per year, are usually eligible to use these two facilities. “Commercial” clients purchasing insurance who have a turnover greater than about £1M per year are not eligible to use these services. Please refer to the Financial Ombudsman Service and Financial Services Compensation scheme websites for full details. Further information about compensation scheme arrangements is available from the FSCS.
IF YOU ARE NOT HAPPY WITH OUR SERVICE
Our number one priority is to provide customers with the highest level of service. However, we know that sometimes things don’t go as planned.
Customer feedback helps us understand where things have gone wrong and gives us the opportunity to put them right. It also helps us to understand where we need to improve our products and services.
If you have a complaint about us please contact us:
If you cannot settle your complaint with us, you may be entitled to refer it to the Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS).
Further information on the services provided by the FOS can be found on their website financial-ombudsman.org.uk or alternatively:
- In writing: The Financial Ombudsman Service, Exchange Tower, London. E14 9SR
- By phone: 0800 023 4567 or 0300 123 9123
- Email: [email protected]