Terms and Conditions of Business

New Terms of Business from 1 January 2024

Our terms of business are changing with effect from 1 January 2024. Please read our new terms here:

Terms of Business effective from 1 January 2024

Existing Terms of Business until 31 December 2023

1. How we arrange investments. We arrange investment transactions on a non-advised basis (execution-only or direct offer). We don’t give financial advice, either before or after a transaction has been arranged. If you are unsure whether an investment is suitable for you, you should seek independent financial advice.

2. Residence. Our service is for investors resident in the UK, Channel Islands or the Isle of Man. You must provide a correspondence address with a valid Royal Mail postcode.

3. CommShare doesn’t handle client money. You never pay investment monies to us and we never hold investment monies for you. We never handle cash and only accept payments from you that relate to our fees, if applicable.

4. Registration. We will arrange for all of your investments to be registered in your name unless you instruct us otherwise in writing beforehand. We will forward documents of title to investments to you as soon as practicable after receiving them. Where there are multiple documents relating to a series of transactions, we will normally only forward them to you once the series is complete.

5. Conflict of interest. Occasions can arise where we or one of our other customers will have some form of interest in business that we arrange for you. If this happens, or we become aware our interests or those of one of our other customers conflict with your interests, we will inform you in writing and obtain your consent before carrying out your instructions.

6. Suitability. We cannot be held liable for the suitability of any product, service or advice you have previously received from another company.

7. Instructions. We usually require written instructions to avoid possible disputes. We will, however, accept spoken instructions if they are recorded or subsequently confirmed in writing.

8. Disclosure. You will be told the amount of commission or any other form of benefit we receive from the issuer of a security or from another intermediary.

9. Charge basis. Your investment accounts may be charged on a commission basis or a fee basis. Where an investment account is charged on a commission basis, we may be paid commission by the product provider. At our discretion we may charge any of your investment accounts on a fee basis, including those investment accounts in respect of which we receive ongoing commission. Ongoing commission received in respect of an investment account charged on a fee basis will be offset against our fees charged on that same investment account.

10. Fees. Where an investment account is charged on a fee basis, we will charge an ongoing service fee which is calculated as a percentage of the value of the investment account concerned. In some cases, where you have agreed that the product provider may do this, the product provider will pay us our fees on your behalf in accordance with clause 10.2 (facilitated service fees). Where the product provider does not pay us our fees on your behalf we will charge you in accordance with clause 10.3 (on account service fees).

10.1 Service fees. You will be charged our standard fees unless otherwise agreed in advance. The table shows our standard fees.

Annual Service FeeAmount (%)Amount (£)
Facilitated0.24% p.a.£24 p.a. for £10,000 invested
On Account0.24% p.a.£24 p.a. for £10,000 invested

10.2 Facilitated Service Fees. In most cases where we do not receive commission, our fees will be calculated and settled on your behalf by the provider of your investment accounts. The product provider pays us directly after deducting fees from your cash account with them or cancelling units from your investment accounts. This is our preferred method for administering fees but is usually only available when you invest through platforms or life companies.

10.3 On Account Service Fees. Where charges are not calculated and settled by the product provider of your investment accounts, we will calculate the fees payable. Ongoing on account service fees are charged monthly in advance, based on the value of your investment accounts. They are calculated based on 1/12th of our annual fee. The full monthly fee is payable even if you have only held an investment account for part of a month. You must settle on account service fees quarterly by variable direct debit.

11. Commission. We may continue to receive commission in respect of certain investment accounts or for some non-advised transactions. If we charge you facilitated service fees or on account service fees on any investment account on which we receive commission we will reduce our fees by the amount of commission received. The table shows the standard commission we receive from product providers (in bold), along with the maximum amounts (in brackets).

Commission TypeAmount (%)Amount (£)
Initial0% (3%)£0 (£300) for £10,000 invested
Ongoing (Often referred to as Renewal or Trail)0.5% p.a. (1% p.a.)£50 p.a. (£100 p.a.) for £10,000 invested

11.1 Initial Commission Rebates. We almost always give up all our initial commission to improve the terms when you invest. If we receive initial commission we reserve the right to retain up to 3%, agreed with you in advance.

12. Professional indemnity insurance. We maintain professional indemnity insurance.

13. Identity Verification. We are legally obliged to verify your identity for certain transactions. We will attempt to do so using a verification agency. Occasionally, we will require proof of identity and address. For example, original or certified copies of a Passport or Driving Licence and Utility bills. We will write to you if we need these. We cannot be held liable for any loss that might arise as a result of delay or failure to carry out an instruction where our identity verification requirements have not been satisfied.

14. Complaints Handling. You can complain by telephone on 0208 308 1308, or by writing to us at CommShare Ltd, 16 Hatherley Road, Sidcup, Kent, DA14 4BG. We aim to resolve complaints quickly and fairly. The Financial Ombudsman Service is available to sort out individual complaints that clients and financial services businesses aren’t able to resolve themselves. To contact the Financial Ombudsman service please visit www.financial-ombudsman.org.uk

15. Financial Services Compensation Scheme. We are covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS). The FSCS can pay compensation to customers if they are eligible and a regulated firm is unable to pay claims against it. You may be entitled to compensation from this scheme if we cannot meet our obligations. This depends on the type of business and the circumstances of the claim. For investments, most retail customers (which includes private individuals and some small businesses) are covered up to a maximum of £85,000. For further information on the conditions governing compensation and details on how to apply please refer to the FSCS at www.fscs.org.uk

16. Financial Conduct Authority. We are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority of 25 The North Colonnade, Canary Wharf, London, E14 5HS under registration number 187989. You can check our details on the Financial Services Register by visiting www.fca.org.uk/firms/financial-services-register or by contacting the FCA on 0800 111 6768.

17. Communicating with you. You can contact us by writing to us at the address set out in clause 15. When we write to you, we will always write to you in English.

18. Client Classification. We will treat you as a Retail Client unless agreed with you otherwise.

19. Termination. We may terminate this agreement by giving you at least 20 business days’ written notice. You may terminate this agreement at any time, without penalty. Notice of termination must be given in writing and will take effect from the date of receipt. Any transactions already initiated will be completed according to this agreement unless otherwise agreed in writing. You will be liable to pay for any services we have provided before cancellation and any outstanding fees, if applicable.

20. Standard Terms. These are our standard terms upon which we intend to rely. For your own benefit and protection you should read these terms carefully and keep a copy for future reference. If you do not understand any point please ask for further information.

21. Amendment to these Terms. We may amend these terms by giving you at least 30 days’ written notice. Circumstances in which we may amend these terms include (a) to comply with changes in law or regulation, (b) to correct inaccuracies, errors, omissions or ambiguities and (c) to reflect changes in the scope and nature of the services we provide, our administrative processes and procedures or market practice. If you object to a change which we propose to make, you may terminate our authority to act on your behalf in accordance with clause 20 before the change takes effect.

22. Effective Date. These Terms and Conditions of Business are effective from 1 August 2021 and remain in effect until amended in accordance with clause 21.