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GEN 4.3 Letter disclosure

Disclosure in letters to retail clients4

GEN 4.3.1 R

A firm must take reasonable care to ensure that every letter (or electronic equivalent) which it or its employees send to a retail client4, with a view to or in connection with the firm carrying on a regulated activity, includes the disclosure in GEN 4 Annex 1 R (firms that are not PRA-authorised persons) or GEN 4 Annex 1AR (PRA-authorised persons) as applicable10.1

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GEN 4.3.1A G

4Where a letter covers both activities to which this section6applies and activities to which this section6does not apply, the firm should comply with the rules in this chapter in relation to the business to which it applies.

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GEN 4.3.1B G

10An example for GEN 4.3.1A G would be where a letter covers business for which the FCA is the competent authority under the Insurance Mediation Directive and under MiFID.

GEN 4.3.2 G

[deleted]10

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GEN 4.3.2A G

10For a UK domestic firm that is not a PRA-authorised person, the required disclosure in GEN 4 Annex 1 R is "Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority".

GEN 4.3.2B G

10For a UK domestic firm that is a PRA-authorised person, the required disclosure in GEN 4 Annex 1AR is "Authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the7 Prudential Regulation Authority".

GEN 4.3.3 G
  1. (1)

    GEN 4.3.1 R (Disclosure in letters to retail clients4) covers letters delivered by hand, sent by post and sent by fax and also electronic mail, but not text messages, account statements, business cards or compliment slips (used as such).

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  2. (2)

    GEN 4.3.1 R (Disclosure in letters to retail clients4) applies in relation to letters sent by any of the firm's employees, which includes its appointed representatives and their employees.

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  3. (3)

    Firms are likely to find it convenient to include the required disclosure in their letterhead.

Exception: insurers

GEN 4.3.4 R

GEN 4.3.1 R (Disclosure in letters to retail clients4) does not apply in relation to:

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  1. (1)

    general insurance business if:

    1. (a)

      the State of the risk is an EEA State other than the United Kingdom; or

    2. (b)

      the State of the risk is outside the EEA and the client is not in the United Kingdom when the contract of insurance is entered into; or

  2. (2)

    long-term insurance business if:

    1. (a)

      the client is habitually resident in an EEA State other than the United Kingdom; or

    2. (b)

      the client is habitually resident outside the EEA and is not present in the United Kingdom when the contract of insurance is entered into.

Exception: authorised professional firms

GEN 4.3.5 R

For an authorised professional firm, GEN 4.3.1 R (Disclosure in letters to retail clients4) does not apply with respect to its non-mainstream regulated activities.

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Exception: use of third party processors in2 home finance2 and insurance mediation activities

GEN 4.3.6 R
  1. (1)

    1Where a firm has outsourced activities to a third party processor other than advising on life policies3, GEN 4.3.1 R does not apply to that third party processor when acting as such, so long as the outsourcing firm ensures that the third party processor and its employees comply with that rule as if it was the firm and they were employees of the firm.

  2. (2)

    Where an appointed representative has outsourced insurance mediation activities other than advising on life policies3 or home finance mediation activities2to a third party processor, GEN 4.3.1 R does not apply to that third party processor when acting as such, so long as the appointed representative's principal ensures that the third party processor and its employees comply with that rule as if it was the appointed representative and they were the employees of the appointed representative.

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  3. (3)

    Where an appointed representative of a firm is carrying on:

    1. (a)

      insurance mediation activities other than advising on life policies3; or

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    2. (b)

      home finance mediation activities;2

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    which have been outsourced to it by the firm, GEN 4.3.1 R does not apply to the firm when the appointed representative is carrying on the outsourced activities, so long as the firm ensures that the appointed representative and its employees comply with that rule as if it was the firm and they were employees of the firm.

Exception: credit firms

GEN 4.3.7 R

8 GEN 4.3.1 R (Disclosure in letters to retail clients) does not apply to a credit firm (other than a firm with a limited permission) with respect to the activity of entering into a regulated credit agreement as lender to which the Consumer Credit Directive applies, to the extent it would be contrary to the United Kingdom's obligations under an EU instrument.

GEN 4.3.8 G

8A credit firm which carries on the activity of entering into a regulated credit agreement as lender , in respect of an agreement 9to which articles 5 and 6 of the Consumer Credit Directive apply is under an obligation to disclose pre-contract information in the form and to the extent required by the Consumer Credit (Disclosure of Information) Regulations 2010 (SI 2010/1013)9. Firms which carry on credit broking may take on the same obligation. A credit firm must also ensure specified information is included in credit agreements to which the Consumer Credit Directive applies 9in the form and to the extent required by the Consumer Credit (Agreements) Regulations 2010 (SI 2010/1014)9.

GEN 4.3.9 G

8The effect of GEN 4.3.7 R is that a credit firm in relation to a regulated credit agreement covered by the Consumer Credit Directive does not need to comply with GEN 4.3.1 R in relation to those letters (or electronic equivalents) that accompany the information required under the Regulations referred to in GEN 4.3.8 G.

GEN 4.3.10 G

8 Regulated activities covered by a limited permission (see the "relevant credit activities" set out in paragraph 2G of Schedule 6 to the Act) do not fall within the scope of articles 5 and 6 of the Consumer Credit Directive, therefore GEN 4.3.7 R and the guidance related to it are not relevant to those activities.