Frequently asked questions

Who is responsible for the network?

Abana Lda

What is the minimum fee per month?

£490 by direct debit from your account.

What are the other fees apart from the monthly membership fee?

No Training fee.
No Visits fee.
No File Check fee.
No Professional indemnity cost.
No Joining fee.
No ICS Levy.
No Software fee.
No FSA annual fee.

Is there a discount for several Appointed Reps under one umbrella IFA company?

No. The fee is as low as possible for each appointed representative. The fee covers supervision, PII and administration cost.

What is the minimum annual commission per registered individual?

Nothing. The less you do the better: no file checks, no pressure on you.

Is there a capital adequacy requirement imposed on me by the network?

No. However, your firm needs to be financially sound to adhere to fit and proper rules.

How long does it take to become a member of the network?

Often just 3 weeks. The time delay beyond the first week is only in obtaining references.

Can I talk to existing members before I join?

You will find a list of appointed representatives on our website that have agreed to comment on our service.

How many times a year do you come and see me?

Once.

Who gets the initial and renewal commission from business written before joining the network?

It all goes to the IFA via a letter of acceptance signed by us which normally directs it to your own bank account (which can be a private account).

Is there a panel of members I have to stick to?

No. You are an experienced adviser and should source and justify your own recommendations.

Does the advice I give require pre-approval and how does it take?

No. You are an experienced adviser and should source and justify your own recommendations.

Is there any backup for unusual products?

Yes. There is a highly experienced compliance and research team with the knowledge to help you through more unusual cases.

Does the network provide Technical Support and services?

We can provide pension transfer and other specialist services if required. You will retain the client and "own" the advice the client and the commission.

Does the network provide all the commission tracking conciliation and credit control facilities?

No. In most cases commissions are paid direct to the member IFA so they control the process themselves.

Can the IFA still use own local reps and contacts with providers?

Yes. Very much encouraged.

Does PI insurance cover have to be paid by the member?

No. The network covers the PI insurance requirement.

Is the PII excess charged to the member?

We have a risk based approach where you will be asked to pay an excess (£5,000) on any upheld claim. Following an upheld complaint, an individual adviser’s excess will be increased to £10,000. If after 3 years, there have been no further upheld complaints, the excess will be returned back to £5,000.

How are client complaints handled?

We are enrolled into the Financial ombudsman scheme and we have a procedure similar to the FSA guidelines.

Who is your PI policy with?

Chartis Europa S.A. for 1,680,300 euro

Can a member design and use their own stationery?

Yes, subject to a compliance check before use.

Does the network help with marketing and leads?

Yes, SEO experts can assist you with any online marketing.

Do you provide a website with the members branding?

Yes, webhosting is included

Does the network handle all regulatory requirements of registration, reporting and T&C?

Yes.

Does the network have special terms with the providers?

Yes. Normal network special terms have been negotiated.

How often do I have to attend a network meeting?

Not compulsory. You control your own CPD and T&C regime.

Can the member do their own local advertising?

Yes, subject to a compliance check.

Do all proposals have to go via the network?

No, You can deal direct with your existing provider systems.

Does the network require any specific software or hardware?

No. Excel and Word are almost essential however there are free downloadable alternatives such as ZOHO that can be used. Ask us if you need any help.

Does the network provide a locum for me at no cost?

No. Locums are not required for network members but you can appoint one if you wish.

General insurance and Mortgages? How do you do the compliance and business submission in these cases?

In exactly the same way as with investment business.

How often do you pay commission?

We don't. The providers pay you direct. If we are paid by a provider for some specific reason it is paid to you immediately.

What period of notice is required to terminate membership?

6 months.

What costs are involved in leaving the network?

Just the 6 months fixed fees during the notice period.

Who is responsible for run off PII costs?

The network is responsible for business written while you are or were a member of the network and we do not ask members to take out their own separate run off cover after they have left. However, as leavers are no longer paying networks fees used to cover the cost of PII cover, we do ask them to make a contribution towards protecting the business they have written. This is optional but if they choose not to take up this opportunity, any redress over and above the normal excess level with not be covered under the policy and will fall on the member to pay.

If I leave can I take my clients with me?

Yes.