Complaints Handling Policy
The information below shall be provided to clients or potential clients, on request, or when acknowledging a complaint (DISP 1.1A.10UK).
1. Complaints Officer Contact Details
The Compliance Officer, Fundamental Asset Management, Cardinal Point, Park Road, Rickmansworth, Hertfordshire WD3 1RE.
2. Complaints Policy
The Firm’s policy regarding customer complaints is that it will handle such complaints fairly in accordance with the FCA’s requirements.
3. Complaint Handling Procedures
Clients and potential clients can submit a complaint free of charge (DISP 1.1A.16UK).
(1) A “MiFID complaint” is defined in the FCA rulebook glossary as “any oral or written expression of dissatisfaction, whether justified or not, from, or on behalf of, a person about the provision of, or failure to provide, a financial service or a “redress determination” (see FCA rulebook glossary for definition) which alleges that the complainant has suffered (or may suffer) financial loss, material distress or material inconvenience, and to which article 26 of the MiFID Org Regulation applies.
(2) These complaint handling procedures apply to complaints from “MiFID complaints” of MiFID investment firms which include complaints from retail clients, professional, and (in relation to “eligible counterparty business”) eligible counterparties (DISP 1.1A.5G).
(3) The Firm will handle the complaint effectively and in an independent manner (DISP 1.1A.19G).
(4) On receipt of a MiFID complaint, the Firm will:-
(a) send the complainant a prompt written acknowledgement providing early reassurance that it has received the MiFID complaint and is dealing with it; and
(b) ensure the complainant is kept informed thereafter of the progress of the measures being taken for the MiFID complaint resolution. DISP 1.1A.28R
(5) The Firm will:-
(a) when handling a complaint, investment firms shall communicate with clients or potential clients clearly, in plain language that is easy to understand and shall reply to the complaint without undue delay DISP 1.1A.29UK.
(b) investigate the complaint competently, diligently and impartially, obtaining additional information as necessary;
(c) assess fairly, consistently and promptly:-
- the subject matter of the complaint;
- whether the complaint should be upheld;
- what remedial action or redress (or both) may be appropriate; and
- if appropriate, whether it has reasonable grounds to be satisfied that another respondent may be solely or jointly responsible for the matter alleged in the complaint; and
(d) comply promptly with any offer of remedial action or redress accepted by the complainant.
(e) factors that may be relevant in the assessment of a MiFID complaint include the following (DISP 1.1A.20R & 1.1A21G):-
(i) all the evidence available and the particular circumstances of the complaint;
(ii) similarities with other complaints received;
(iii) relevant guidance published by the FCA or the Financial Ombudsman Service; and
(iv) appropriate analysis of decisions by the Financial Ombudsman Service concerning similar complaints received by the Firm.
(6) Where the Firm resolves a MiFID complaint by close of business on the third business day following the day on which it is received, it will refer to DISP 1.1A.24UK to DISP 1.1A.27G. In summary, this means that the Firm will (DISP 1.1A.23R):-
(a) communicate and refer to the fact that the complainant has made a MiFID Complaint and inform the complainant that the Firm now considers the MiFID Complaint to have been resolved;
(b) inform the complainant that if, still dissatisfied with the resolution of the MiFID Complaint, the complainant can find more information and may be able to refer it to the Financial Ombudsman Service and provide the website address of the Financial Ombudsman Service.
(7) Where the Firm does not resolve a MiFID complaint by close of business on the third business day following the day on which it is received, then it should ensure that the complainant is kept informed thereafter of the progress of the measures being taken for the MiFID complaint’s resolution (DISP1.1A.28R). Per DISP 1.1A.34G the Financial Services Ombudsman can consider a complaint where eight weeks have elapsed since its receipt by the Firm. Per DISP1.6.7G it is expected that within eight weeks of their receipt, almost all complaints to a respondent will have been substantively addressed by it through a final response or response as described in DISP 1.6.4R.
(8) Where the Firm does not resolves a MiFID complaint by close of business on the third business day following the day on which it is received, then once the Firm has assessed the MiFID complaint it will provide a final response to the complainant which:-
(a) communicates the Firm’s position on the complaint to clients or potential clients and inform the clients or potential clients about their options, including that they may be able to refer the complaint to an alternative dispute resolution entity, as defined in regulation 4 of the ADR Regulations or that the client may be able to take civil action (DISP 1.1A.30UK);
(b) In making a final response the Firm will tell the complainant about the six-month time limit that the complainant has to refer a complaint to FOS (DISP 2.8.3R)
(c) And, under DISP 1.1A.31R
(i) encloses a copy of the FOS standard explanatory leaflet.
(ii) provide the website address of the Financial Ombudsman Service;
(iii) inform the complainant that if, still dissatisfied with the respondent’s response, the complaint may now be referred to the Financial Ombudsman Service (DISP1.1A.31R); and
(iv) indicate whether or not the respondent consents to waiving the relevant time limits in DISP 2.8.2R or DISP 2.8.7R (Was the complaint referred to the Financial Ombudsman Service in time?) by including the appropriate wording set out in DISP1 Annex 3R.
4. Complaints Forwarding
(a) Where the Firm has reasonable grounds to be satisfied that another party/firm may be solely or jointly responsible for the matter alleged in a complaint it may forward the complaint, or the relevant part of it, in writing to that other party/firm, provided it does so promptly and informs the complainant promptly in a final response of why the complaint has been forwarded by it to the other party/firm, and their contact details.
(b) Where the Firm is jointly responsible for the fault alleged in the complaint, the Firm will comply with its own obligations in respect of that part of the complaint which has not been forwarded (DISP 7.1).
19 June 2023