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Advocate Advisory Pty Ltd

Privacy Policy

May 2020


The collection of personal information about individuals by organisations is governed by the Australian Privacy Principles as contained in the Privacy Act 2009, amended by the Privacy Amendment (Enhancing Protection) Act 2012. These principles contain a national scheme for the collection, use, correction, disclosure and transfer of personal information by organisations within Australia.

As financial advisers, representatives of Advocate Advisory are bound by privacy and confidentiality provisions under the Financial Planners and Advisers’ Code of Ethics (“Code of Ethics”).

As registered tax (financial) advisers, Advocate Advisory and its representatives are also bound by privacy and confidentiality obligations under the Tax Practitioners Board (“TPB”) Code of Professional Conduct.

As a mechanism to ensure our compliance with the Australian Privacy Principles, and the above relevant Code provisions, we have established and implemented a Privacy Policy (‘the Policy’).

1.1 Purpose

The Policy explains our policies and practices with respect to the collection and management of personal information we collect from you. This policy details our policies and practices for complying with the Australian Privacy Principles, and the privacy and confidentiality Standard within the TPB Code of Professional Conduct and the Code of Ethics.

1.2 Scope

The Policy applies to Advocate Advisory and all of its representatives (including corporate authorised representatives and individual authorised representatives).

2 Collection

2.1 What information do we collect and hold?

As a provider of planning services we are subject to certain legislative and regulatory requirements which necessitate us obtaining and holding detailed information which personally identifies you and/or contains information or an opinion about you.

Our ability to provide you with comprehensive financial planning services and advice is dependent on us obtaining certain personal and sensitive information about you, which may include:

  • employment details and employment history;

  • details of your financial needs and objectives;

  • details of your current financial circumstances, including your assets and liabilities (both actual and potential),

  • income, expenditure, insurance cover and superannuation;

  • details of your investment preferences and aversion or tolerance to risk;

  • information about your employment history, employment circumstances, family commitments and social security eligibility;

  • Tax file number; and health information (for some types of insurance)

We will only collect information about you that we require for providing you with the above services. Where we collect sensitive information about you such as your health (e.g. for insurance policies), we will only do so if required for the purposes of providing financial services to you and will seek your specific consent to do so.

Failure to provide the personal and sensitive information referred to above may expose you to higher risks in respect of the recommendationsmade to you and may affect the adequacy or appropriateness of advice or financial service we give to you.

We are also required to ask for certain information by law. Wherever there is a legal requirement for us to ask for information about you, we will inform you of the obligation and the consequences of not giving us the requested information.

For example, in addition to obtaining personal information from you, whenever you acquire a new product or service via us, we will need to obtain certain documentary evidence from you as to your identity to ensure compliance with AML/CTF laws. Such evidence may include for example a certified copy of your driver’s licence, passport or birth certificate.

2.2 How do we collect information?

Generally collection of your personal information will be effected directly with you, in either face to face interviews, over the telephone or by way of an online client engagement form.

From time to time additional and/or updated personal information may be collected through one or more of those methods.

We may also need to collect information from third parties. For example, we may need to collect information from your financial adviser, product issuer and employer. Alternatively, we may need to collect information from a person whom you authorise to do so. Where we are required to do so, we will obtain specific consent from you.

We will not collect any personal information about you except when you have knowingly provided that information to us or authorised a third party to provide that information to us. If we receive any information about you that is unsolicited and is not required to be collected for the purposes outlined in this section, we will, if it is lawful and reasonable to do so, destroy the information or ensure the information is de-identified.

2.3 How do we hold your personal information?

As financial advisers, we are required to maintain your records in a form that is both complete and accurate.

We will store your personal information in hard copy files within our offices or places of work. We may also maintain electronic records of your personal information on financial planning software or on our designated server.

We will at all times ensure that any information that we held is protected and secure. Refer to Section 7 of this policy for more information about our security measures.

Where we hold information that we longer require for any purpose and it is not required to be maintained by Australian law, we will take reasonable steps to destroy the information or ensure that the information is de-identified.

3 Use of information

How do we use the information that we collect from you?

We use personal information about an individual for the purposes for which it has been obtained, and as relevant for the provision of financial planning services to you (inclusive of tax (financial) advice services. We collect personal information so that we are able to complete one or more of the following:

  • the preparation of your financial plan;

  • the provision of financial planning advice and services to you;

  • the provision of tax (financial) planning services to you;

  • making insurance and investment recommendations; • implementing recommendations made to you;

  • reviewing your financial plan;

  • reviewing insurance, and investment recommendations;

We may also, from time to time, use your personal information (excluding sensitive information) for the purposes of direct marketing to you. Generally, we will only provide you with direct marketing if you have consented for us to do so, and you are able to opt out of receiving direct marketing from us at any time by contacting your financial adviser.

Personal information will only be used for the purpose of providing financial planning services unless you have provided consent to do so, or where it is required or authorised under law, and in circumstances relating to public health and safety or in connection with certain operations by or on behalf of an enforcement body.

4 Disclosure

Who do we give information to?

  • In providing you with financial planning services (inclusive of tax (financial) advice services), we may disclose your personal information to third parties, including:

  • superannuation fund trustees, insurance providers, Wrap account service providers, stockbrokers and product issuers

  • your employer (relates only to employer sponsored superannuation arrangements)

  • any fund (administrator or trustee) to which your benefit is to be transferred or rolled over

  • medical practitioners and other relevant professionals, where you have applied for insurance cover or made a claim for disablement benefit

  • your personal representative, or any other person who may be entitled to receive your death benefit, or any person contacted to assist us to process that benefit

  • any financial institution who holds an account for you

  • any professional advisers appointed by us or businesses that may have referred you to us.

  • Advocate Advisory (as your adviser’s licensee) and its related entities, for example for undertaking paraplanning or auditing services.

  • entities that maintain offsite data storage systems (including ‘cloud storage).

At the time of collection of your personal information, we will seek your consent to disclose your information to third parties such as these for the purposes of providing you with financial services.

There may also be situations where we are required to disclose your personal information. For example:

  • if required by law we may disclose to regulatory bodies such as the Australian Taxation Office (relating to taxation matters), AUSTRAC (to meet reporting obligations under the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act 2006) or to ASIC (as related to the Corporations Act 2001)or the TPB (as required under Tax Agent Services Act 2009).

  • If authorised by law (such as where we are obliged to disclose information in the public interest or to protect our interests)

  • if required to assist in law enforcement (such as to a police force, or a court or tribunal under a direction or order). If we are required to disclose information in relation to enforcement related activities, we will maintain a written note of the disclosure of the information for this purpose.

We do not disclose personal information to any overseas recipients. We will not disclose your information to a third party unless we have:

  • obtained your permission, or

  • have a legal duty to do so.

5 Access and correction of information

5.1 Can I access my information

You may request access to the personal information we hold about you. We will respond to your request within a reasonable period after the request is made. We will endeavour to provide you with access to the information in the manner requested by you. We may charge a reasonable fee to cover our costs.

There may be circumstances where we are unable to give you access to the information that you have requested. If this is the case we will inform you and explain the reasons why, unless, having regard to the grounds for the refusal, it would be unreasonable to do so. We will also advise you of the mechanisms available to complain about the refusal.

If you wish to access your personal information, you should contact us via our offices or by writing to the Privacy Officer. Details of how to contact the privacy officer are set out in section 8 below.

5.2 What if my information is not correct?

We will take reasonable steps to ensure that the personal information we collect, use or disclose is accurate, complete and up to date.

You have a right to ask us to correct any information we hold about you if you believe it is not accurate, complete or up to date. We will respond to your request within a reasonable period after the request is made. Any corrections made will be done so free of charge.

We will also, if you request for us to do so, notify any other third party of the correction unless it is impractical or unlawful to do so.

If we do not agree with the corrections you have supplied we may refuse to correct the personal information. If we do so, we will provide you with a written notice that sets out:

  • The reasons for the refusal except to the extent that it would be unreasonable to do so; and

  • The mechanisms available to complain about the refusal.

If your request to correct personal information is denied, you may request that we associate with that information, a statement that the information is inaccurate, out of date, incomplete, irrelevant or misleading. We will take reasonable steps to ensure that this statement is associated with the information in a way that it is apparent to users of the information.

6 Complaints

If you have a concern about the privacy of your information, or if you believe that we have breached the Australian Privacy Principles, you may lodge a complaint with us by writing to the Privacy Officer. Refer to section 8 for contact details for our Privacy Officer. We will seek to resolve your complaint, and will respond to your complaint, in writing, within 30 days.

If our privacy officer is unable to resolve your complaint, you may lodge a complaint with the Privacy Commissioner. You can contact the Privacy Commissioner by:

  • calling the hotline on 1300 363 992 or

  • visiting the web site and lodging a Privacy Complaint Form.

7 Protection of personal and sensitive information

How do we protect the security of your information?

We have security systems, practices and procedures in place to safeguard your privacy and protect your information from misuse, interference and loss, as well as from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.

Security measures include:

  • lockable offices or premises

  • IT Disaster recovery program

  • password protected computers

  • anti-virus software

  • back up of all electronic data.

  • Secure servers

The people who handle your personal information for us have the training, knowledge, skills and commitment to protect it from unauthorised access or misuse.

8 How do I contact the Privacy Officer?

You may contact the Privacy Officer in writing via the following address:

Privacy Officer Advocate Advisory Pty Ltd
Unit 260, 88 Kavanagh St, Southbank
Vic 3006

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