Questions to Ask Your Financial Adviser

The commencement of the Federal Government’s Royal Commission into Banking has resulted in startling revelations about how financial services are delivered to Australians. The likes of the Banks, AMP and even some larger financial planning groups have found the scrutiny of their practices uncomfortable, to say the least.

We provide below some answers to possible questions relating to the Holzworth Partners group which may arise as points of interest to you. We have not had these asked of us, however we desire to be open and transparent to give you peace of mind.

Please contact us on telephone 1 300 009 888 should you wish to discuss this further.

1. Who provides your Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL) to operate?

The Holzworth Partners group includes Zenith Representatives Pty Ltd, a wholly owned company which holds an AFSL directly issued from the Australian Government. The government agency called the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) licenses approved professional organisations like Zenith Representatives.

2. How is your business owned?

Perhaps the more important question at the present is “Do any Banks, Insurance Companies or other Institutions have any ownership interests in the Holzworth Partners group, which may influence its service delivery to me?”

No! The Holzworth Partners group is independently and privately owned.

3. Does anybody else ever pay you to advise me and, if so, do you earn more to recommend certain products or services?

It is generally considered to be conflicted remuneration should we receive payment from a third-party. This isn’t a problem where we have disclosed it to you.

An example is where we will recommend an insurance policy to provide for your personal protection. In this case, the insurer may pay us a brokerage to cover our costs in providing the service, so you don’t directly pay. In this event, we will always inform you of the amount.

It is important to note that the payment to us will always be the same regardless of which provider we use on your behalf. Thus, we can be objective in providing our advice to you and not be swayed by apparent other incentives.

4. Will you itemise all your fees and expenses in writing?

Yes.

5. Are you always a fiduciary?

Australia’s financial planners are required, by law, to act in the best interests of clients. We view this as being akin to acting as fiduciaries.  Also, being a firm providing Public Accounting, Taxation and Legal Services we have codes-of-conduct we are required to abide by.

6. Do you focus solely on investment management, or do you also advise on taxes, estates and retirement, budgeting and debt management, and insurance?

As a diversified financial services group, we provide a wide array of services with no single service the sole fee base of our firm. In addition to the above areas of practice expertise, we also provide Legal advice and services.

7. Do you earn fees for referring clients to specialists like estate attorneys or insurance agents?

No. These services are all provided in-house by our related group companies.

8. Which professional credentials do you have, and what are their requirements?

First and foremost, the Holzworth Partners group is comprehensively licensed by Federal and State agencies to advise in all areas of service it offers. This includes as Financial Advisers and Investment Managers, Accountants and Tax Agents, Legal practitioners, etc.

Accordingly, our team comprises qualified Accountants, Financial Advisers, Lawyers, etc. We are required to undertake constant education to ensure we remain fully informed of matters pertaining to our respective areas of expertise. Apart from formal external learnings and studies, this includes internal professional development days and strategy sessions.

 

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