Terms of Business

Last revised May 2022

The purpose of this schedule is to set out the standard terms of business that apply to all engagements accepted by Langdowns DFK. All work carried out is subject to these terms except where changes are expressly agreed in writing.

These standard terms of business are applicable to all types of entities (e.g. companies, LLPs, charities, friendly societies, academies, pension schemes, etc.). Any reference therefore to ‘director’ or ‘company’ should be interpreted as appropriate for the entity type (e.g. partner, trustee, governor, charity, LLP, etc.)

1             Professional obligations

1.1          We will observe and act in accordance with the bye-laws and regulations of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales together with their code of ethics, which can be found at icaew.com/regulation. We accept instructions to act for you on this basis. In particular you give us authority to correct errors made by HM Revenue and Customs where we become aware of them. We will not be liable for any loss, damage or cost arising from our compliance with statutory or regulatory obligations.

1.2          We confirm that we are statutory auditors eligible to conduct audits under the Companies Act 2006. When conducting audit work, we are required to comply with the Ethical and Auditing Standards issued by the FRC, which can be accessed online at www.frc.org.uk/Our-Work/Codes-Standards/Audit-and-assurance/Standards-and-guidance/Standards-and-guidance-for-auditors.aspx. We are also required to comply with the Audit Regulations and Guidance which can be accessed at icaew.com/en/technical/audit-and-assurance/working-in-the-regulated-area-of-audit.

2             The Provision of Services Regulations 2009

2.1          We are registered to carry on audit work in the UK and Ireland by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. Details about our audit registration can be viewed at www.auditregister.org.uk under reference number C001490618.

2.2          The professional rules applicable to audit work are the ‘Audit Regulations and Guidance’ which can be found at www.icaew.com/auditnews and ‘International Standards on Auditing (UK and Ireland)’ which can be found at www.frc.org.uk.

2.3          In accordance with the disclosure requirements of the Provision of Services Regulations 2009, our professional indemnity insurer’s details are displayed publically in our reception in our Eastleigh office being situated at Fleming Court, Leigh Road, Eastleigh, Hampshire, SO50 9PD.

3             Investment services

3.1          Since we are not authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority then we may have to refer you to someone who is authorised if you need advice on investments. However, as we are licensed by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, we may be able to provide certain investment services that are complementary to, or arise out of, the professional services we are providing to you.

3.2          Such advice may include:

  • advise you on investments generally, but not recommend a particular investment or type of investment;
  • refer you to a Permitted Third Party (PTP) (an independent firm authorised by the FCA), assist you and the PTP during the course of any advice given by that party and comment on, or explain, the advice received (but not make alternative recommendations). The PTP will issue you with his own terms and conditions letter, will be remunerated separately for his services and will take full responsibility for compliance with the requirements of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000;
  • advise you in connection with the disposal of an investment, other than your rights in a pension policy or scheme;
  • advise and assist you in transactions concerning shares or other securities not quoted on a recognised exchange;
  • assist you in making arrangements for transactions in investments in certain circumstances; and
  • manage investments or act as trustee (or donee of a power of attorney) where decisions to invest are taken on the advice of an authorised person.

3.3          For corporate clients we may also, on the understanding that the shares or other securities of the company are not publicly traded:

  • advise the company, existing or prospective shareholders in relation to exercising rights, taking benefits or share options, valuations and methods of such valuations;
  • arrange any agreements in connection with the issue, sale or transfer of the company’s shares or other securities;
  • arrange for the issue of new shares; and
  • act as the addressee to receive confirmation of acceptance of offer documents etc.

3.4          In the unlikely event that we cannot meet our liabilities to you, you may be able to claim compensation under the Chartered Accountants’ Compensation Scheme in respect of exempt regulated activities undertaken.

3.5          In relation to the conduct of insurance distribution activities, we are an ancillary insurance intermediary and we are not authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority. However, we are included on the Register maintained by the Financial Conduct Authority so that we can carry on insurance mediation activity, which is broadly the advising on, selling, and administration of insurance contracts. This part of our business, including arrangements for complaints or redress if something goes wrong, is regulated by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. The register can be accessed via the Financial Conduct Authority website at www.fca.org.uk/register

Financial Promotions

3.6          To enable us to provide you with a proper service, there may be occasions when we will need to contact you without your express permission concerning investment business matters. For example, it may be in your interests to sell a particular investment and we would wish to inform you of this. We may therefore contact you in such circumstances, but would only do so in our normal office hours of 08.45 to 17.15 Monday to Thursday and 08.45 to 16.00 Friday. We shall of course comply with any restrictions you may wish to impose which you notify to us in writing.

4             Commissions or other benefits

4.1          In some circumstances, commissions or other benefits may become payable to us or to one of our associates in respect of transactions we or such associates arrange for you, in which case you will be notified in writing of the amount and terms of payment. Where the firm or its associates earn commission in respect of transactions we arrange for you, our fees otherwise payable by you will not be abated by such amounts.  If we reduce the fees that we would otherwise charge by the amount of commission retained, we will apply the HMRC concession which allows VAT to be calculated on the net fee after deduction of the commission. You consent to such commission or other benefits being retained by us or, as the case may be, by our associates, without our, or their, being liable to account to you for any such amounts.

5             Client monies

5.1          We may, from time to time, hold money on your behalf. Such money will be held in trust in a client bank account, which is segregated from the firm’s funds. The account will be operated, and all funds dealt with, in accordance with the Clients’ Money Regulations of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales

5.2          In order to avoid an excessive amount of administration, interest will only be paid to you where the amount of interest that would be earned on the balances held on your behalf in any calendar year exceeds £25. Any such interest would be calculated using the prevailing rate applied by Barclays Bank for small deposits subject to the minimum period of notice for withdrawals. Subject to any tax legislation, interest will be paid gross.

5.3          If the total sum of money held on your behalf is enough to give rise to a significant amount of interest or is likely to do so, then the money will be placed in a separate interest-bearing client bank account designated to you. All interest earned on such money will be paid to you. Subject to any tax legislation, interest will be paid gross.

5.4          We will return monies held on your behalf promptly as soon as there is no longer any reason to retain those funds. In the unlikely event of us holding any unclaimed monies we reserve the right to pay such monies to a registered charity in line with the guidelines set out in the Clients’ Money Regulations referred to above. We will not do this unless we have been unable to contact you for at least five years and we have taken reasonable steps to trace you and return the monies.

6             Fees

6.1          Our fees are normally computed on the basis of time spent on your affairs by the principals and our staff, including sub-contractors or consultants where necessary, and on the levels of skill and responsibility involved. Disbursements represent travel, accommodation and other expenses incurred in dealing with your affairs.

6.2          If it is necessary to carry out work outside the responsibilities agreed with you for each service, we will advise you in advance. Any additional work will involve additional fees. Accordingly we would like to point out that it is in your interests to ensure that your records etc. are completed to the agreed stage.

6.3          Invoices are payable in full (including disbursements) in accordance with the terms set out on the invoice.  If you do not accept that an invoiced fee is fair and reasonable you must notify us within 21 days of receipt, failing which you will be deemed to have accepted that payment is due.

6.4          It is our normal practice to request that clients make arrangements to pay a proportion of their fee on a monthly direct debit or standing order. These direct debits and standing orders will be applied to fees arising from work agreed in our letter of engagement for the current and ensuing years. Once we have been able to assess the amount of work and time involved we would be grateful if you would agree to pay an amount to us on a regular basis.

6.5          We reserve the right to charge interest on overdue accounts at the current rate under the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998. We also reserve the right to terminate our engagement and cease acting if payment of any fees billed is unduly delayed. We accept settlement of fees by certain credit cards.

6.6          In cases where we receive instructions from individuals on behalf of limited companies, a Letter of Engagement signed by a director or directors of the company will confirm agreement that the director(s) personally guarantees that if the company cannot pay our fees for whatever reason then the director(s) will settle our fees personally on the same terms as those applicable to the company.

6.7          If a client company, trust or other entity is unable or unwilling to settle our fees, we reserve the right to seek payment from the individual (or parent company) giving us instructions on behalf of the client, and we shall be entitled to enforce any sums due against the group company or individual nominated to act for you.

6.8          Insofar as we are permitted to so by law or by professional guidelines, we reserve the right to exercise a lien over all funds, documents and records in our possession relating to all engagements for you until all outstanding fees and disbursements are paid in full.

6.9          In the event that this firm ceases to act in relation to your company’s affairs you agree to meet all reasonable costs of providing information to the company’s new advisers. In particular you agree to meet these costs where we are required by law to provide information to a successor firm.

7             Retention of papers

7.1          You have a legal responsibility to retain documents and records relevant to your financial affairs. During the course of our work we may collect information from you and others relevant to your tax and financial affairs. We will return any original documents to you if requested. Documents and records relevant to your tax affairs are required by law to be retained as follows:

Individuals, trustees and partnerships:

  • with trading or rental income: five years and 10 months after the end of the tax year;
  • otherwise: 22 months after the end of the tax year.

Companies, Limited Liability Partnerships, and other corporate entities:

  • six years from the end of the accounting period.

7.2          Although certain documents may legally belong to you, we may destroy correspondence and other papers that we store electronically or otherwise that are more than seven years old, except documents we think may be of continuing significance. You must tell us in writing if you wish us to keep any document for any longer period.

8             Conflicts of interest and independence

8.1          We reserve the right during our engagement with you to deliver services to other clients whose interests might compete with yours or are or may be adverse to yours, subject to clause 9 below. We confirm that we will notify you immediately should we become aware of any conflict of interest involving us and affecting you unless we are unable to do so because of our confidentiality obligations. We have safeguards that can be implemented to protect the interests of different clients if a conflict arises. Where conflicts are identified which cannot be managed in a way that protects your interests then we regret that we will be unable to provide further services.

8.2        If there is a conflict of interest that is capable of being addressed successfully by the adoption of suitable safeguards to protect your interests, we will adopt those safeguards. In resolving the conflict, we would be guided by ICAEW’s Code of Ethics, which can be viewed at icaew.com/en/membership/regulations-standards-and-guidance/ethics . During and after our engagement, you agree that we reserve the right to act for other clients whose interests are or may compete with or be adverse to yours, subject, of course, to our obligations of confidentiality and the safeguards set out in the paragraph on confidentiality above.

9             Confidentiality

9.1          We confirm that where you give us confidential information, we shall at all times keep it confidential, except as required by law or as provided for in regulatory, ethical or other professional statements relevant to our engagement.

9.2          You agree that, if we act for other clients who are or who become your competitors, to comply with our duty of confidentiality it will be sufficient for us to take such steps as we think appropriate to preserve the confidentiality of information given to us by you, both during and after this engagement. These may include taking the same or similar steps as we take in respect of the confidentiality of our own information.

9.3          In addition, if we act for other clients whose interests are or may be adverse to yours, we will manage the conflict by implementing additional safeguards to preserve confidentiality. Safeguards may include measures such as separate teams, physical separation of teams, and separate arrangements for storage of, and access to, information.

9.4          You agree that the effective implementation of such steps or safeguards as described above will provide adequate measures to avoid any real risk of confidentiality being impaired.

9.5          We may, on occasions, subcontract work on your affairs to other tax or accounting professionals. The subcontractors will be bound by our client confidentiality terms.

9.6          We will inform you of the proposed use of a subcontractor before they commence work, except where your data will not be transferred out of our systems and the subcontractor is bound by the confidentiality terms equivalent to an employee.

9.7          If we use external or cloud based systems, we will ensure confidentiality of your information is maintained.

9.8          We reserve the right, for the purpose of promotional activity, training or other business purposes, to mention that you are a client.  As stated above, we will not disclose any confidential information.

9.9          This clause applies in addition to our obligations as to data protection below.

10           Quality control

10.1        As part of our ongoing commitment to providing a quality service, our files are periodically subject to an independent regulatory or quality review. Our reviewers are highly experienced and professional people and are, of course, bound by the same requirements of confidentiality as our principals and staff.

               Dealing with HM Revenue & Customs

10.2        When dealing with HMRC on your behalf we are required to be honest and to take reasonable care to ensure that your returns are correct. To enable us to do this, you are required to be honest with us and to provide us with all necessary information in a timely manner. For more information about ‘Your Charter’ for your dealings with HMRC, see www.hmrc.gov.uk/charter/index.htm. To the best of our abilities, we will ensure that HMRC meet their side of the Charter in their dealings with you.

11           Help us to give you the right service

11.1        We are committed to providing you with a high quality service that is both efficient and effective. If at any time you would like to discuss with us how our service to you could be improved, or if you are dissatisfied with the service you are receiving, please let us know, by contacting Graeme Lovell on 02380 613000.

11.2        We undertake to look into any complaint carefully and promptly and do all we can to explain the position to you. If we do not answer your complaint to your satisfaction you may of course take up the matter with our professional body, The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.

11.3        In order for us to provide you with a high quality service on an ongoing basis it is essential that you provide us with relevant records and information when requested, reply to correspondence in a timely manner and otherwise follow the terms of the agreement between us set out in this Standard Terms of Business and associated Engagement letters and schedules of services. We therefore reserve the right to cancel the engagement between us with immediate effect in the event of:

  • your insolvency, bankruptcy or other arrangement being reached with creditors;
  • failure to pay our fees by the due dates;
  • either party being in breach of their obligations where this is not corrected within 30 days of being asked to do so.

12           Applicable law

12.1        Our engagement letter, the schedules of services and our standard terms and conditions of business are governed by, and should be construed in accordance with English law. The Courts of England will have exclusive jurisdiction in relation to any claim, dispute or difference concerning our engagement letter and schedules of services and any matter arising from it. Each party irrevocably waives any right it may have to object to any action being brought in those courts, to claim that the action has been brought in an inappropriate forum, or to claim that those courts do not have jurisdiction.

12.2        If any provision in this Standard Terms of Business or any associated engagement letter and schedules of services, or its application, are found to be invalid, illegal or otherwise unenforceable in any respect, the validity, legality or enforceability of any other provisions shall not in any way be affected or impaired.

13           Changes in the law, in practice or in public policy

13.1        We will not accept responsibility if you act on advice previously given by us without first confirming with us that the advice is still valid in light of any change in the law, public policy or your circumstances.

13.2        We will accept no liability for losses arising from changes in the law or the interpretation thereof, practice, or public policy that are first published after the date on which the advice is given to the fullest extent permitted by applicable law.

14           Internet communication

14.1        Unless you instruct us otherwise we may, where appropriate, communicate with you and with third parties via email or by other electronic means. However, internet communications are capable of data corruption and therefore we do not accept any responsibility for changes made to such communications after their despatch.  It may therefore be inappropriate to rely on advice contained in an e-mail without obtaining written confirmation of it. We do not accept responsibility for any errors or problems that may arise through the use of internet communication and all risks connected with sending commercially sensitive information relating to your business are borne by you. If you do not agree to accept this risk, you should notify us in writing that e-mail is not an acceptable means of communication. We will never change our bank details without confirming this to you by posted letter. Any emailed or telephoned communications appearing to be from us which are not confirmed by post are fake and we accept no liability for any loss caused to you through accepting such communications as genuine. Similarly, always give us by hand or by post (as well as by email) details of your bank account.

14.2        It is the responsibility of the recipient to carry out a virus check on any attachments received.

15           Data Protection

15.1        To enable us to discharge the services agreed under our engagement, and for other related purposes including updating and enhancing client records, analysis for management purposes and statutory returns, crime prevention and legal and regulatory compliance, we may obtain, use, process and disclose personal data about you/your business/company/partnership/ its officers and employees and shareholders (‘personal data’).

15.2        Information on how Langdowns DFK look after your personal data is detailed in the Privacy Statement and Cookie Policy and can be viewed at http://www.langdownsdfk.com/privacy-statement-cookie-policy .

15.3        Depending upon the nature of the services being delivered under this agreement we may be acting as an independent data controller or as a data processor or both. The relevant obligations in each circumstance are described in the following clauses.

Where we are a Data controller

15.4        Where we are each considered an independent data controller in relation to personal data we will each comply with the relevant provisions of applicable data protection legislation.

15.5        You will also ensure that any disclosure of personal data to us complies with such legislation. If you supply us with any personal data or confidential information you shall ensure you have a lawful basis to pass it to us and will fully indemnify and hold us harmless if you do not have such a basis and that causes us loss. If you are supplying us with personal data on the basis of a power of attorney for anyone, you must produce to us an original or certified copy of the power of attorney on demand. You must ensure you have provided the necessary information to the relevant data subjects regarding its use. You may refer to our privacy notice at http://www.langdownsdfk.com/privacy-statement-and-cookie-policy.

15.6        As a separate data controller, we may receive subject access requests from data subjects where they request copies of their personal data. We will co-operate with the request as per our own internal procedures. Should an objection or request for data erasure happen, we will assess each request on a case by case basis to establish the validity of the request.

15.7        In the course of providing services to you, we may disclose personal data to other firms in our network, a regulatory body or a third party or a buyer of our business. As part of our operational service, personal data supplied to us may be transferred between us and EEA/UK/USA where necessary. We will ensure that where any such data transfer takes place, it is covered by an appropriate safeguard such as an adequacy decision. Where an adequacy decision is not applicable another safeguard mechanism will be implemented, such as a standard contractual clause (SCC) to ensure that the transfer remains legal. Where cloud-based services are used the relevant cloud services terms and conditions will apply. In some instances, the location of data stored in the cloud may reside outside of the EEA/UK.

On 28 June 2021, the European Commission approved the UK for adequacy. This means that the continuation of data flows between the UK and the EU will remain unaffected and we can rely on this mechanism for the terms under this agreement over the next four years until its review in June 2025.

15.8        We confirm we have adequate security measures in place to protect personal data provided to us, including administrative, physical and technical safeguards.

15.9        We will answer your reasonable enquiries to enable you to monitor compliance with this clause. If you need to contact us about any data protection issue, please contact the person

Where we are a Data processor

15.10      Applicable data protection legislation places express obligations on you as a data controller where we as a data processor undertake the processing of personal data on your behalf. An example would be where we operate a payroll service for you. We therefore confirm that we will at all times use our reasonable endeavours to comply with the requirements of applicable EU/EEA/UK data protection legislation when processing data on your behalf. In particular we confirm that we will aim to comply with any obligations equivalent to those placed on you as a data controller in the EU/EEA/UK. You will also comply with applicable data protection legislation, including but not restricted to, ensuring that you have all appropriate consents and notices or another lawful basis in place to enable the lawful transfer of personal data to us. You will fully indemnify and hold us harmless if you do not have a lawful basis and that causes us loss.

15.11      Schedule A forms part of the engagement letter and sets out the subject matter and duration of the processing, the nature and purpose of the processing, the type of personal data and the categories of data subjects.

15.12      As the data processor we shall;

  • process personal data only on written instruction from you;
  • Restrict data access to authorised personnel only, and who are bound by confidentiality;
  • Disclose the personal data to courts, government agencies and other third parties as and to the extent required by law;
  • Maintain a written record of all categories of personal data processing carried out on your behalf, including details of transfers of personal data outside of the EU/EEA/UK and a general description of the technical and organisational security measures in place in relation to personal data; and
  • Delete or return all personal data to you at the completion of our engagement requiring personal data processing, subject to legal requirements to retain data.

15.13      In the course of providing services to you and processing personal data, we may disclose personal data to other firms in our network, a regulatory body or a third party. We may use a sub-processor and/or export personal data you supply to us outside the EU/EEA/UK where necessary. We will obtain consent before engaging sub-processors. We will ensure all such data disclosure/export is compliant with relevant data protection legislation and will use our reasonable endeavours to ensure that any agreement entered into with sub-processors includes similar terms to those set out in this clause 14. Where cloud-based services are to be used you may be subject to our cloud services terms and conditions.

On 28 June 2021, the European Commission approved the UK for adequacy. This means that the continuation of data flows between the UK and the EU will remain unaffected and we can rely on this mechanism for the terms under this agreement over the next four years until its review in June 2025.

15.14      We confirm we have adequate security measures in place to protect personal data provided to us, including administrative, physical and technical safeguards.

15.15      We will notify you within 10 working days if an individual asks for copies of their personal data, makes a complaint about the processing of personal data or serves a notice from a relevant data protection authority where it relates to you. You and we will consult and cooperate with each other when responding to any such request, complaint or notice. If an individual whose data you have supplied to us or which we are processing on your behalf asks us to remove or cease processing that data, we shall be entitled to do so where required by law.

15.16      We will answer your reasonable enquiries to enable you to monitor compliance with this clause. We will also allow for, and contribute to, audits or inspections conducted by the ICO or their auditor to demonstrate compliance with this clause.

16           Secure client portal (part of the Cloud)

16.1        We provide a voluntary client portal service to allow the secure exchange of documents between you and the firm.

16.2        You should use this service for file transport only, you cannot rely on this service as a permanent means of file storage or backup. We purge all data from the portal on a regular basis.

16.3        Other than where there is a lawful basis for transferring personal data to us, you agree that you will have secured consent to transfer personal data to us prior to doing so.

16.4        You undertake to use the system for acceptable use, which includes:

  • not to transmit any viruses, Trojans, keyloggers or other harmful code;
  • not to transmit any unlawful information or content;
  • not to allow access to the service to any third party; and
  • not to use the software to provide services to other parties.

16.5        You are responsible for:

  • ensuring that your network and systems meet any necessary performance requirements;
  • maintaining your network and telecommunication links; and
  • compliance with any applicable terms as shown on the site itself which may be updated from time to time.

16.6        You are obliged to keep all passwords and login details secure and not to share with others. We will keep all passwords and login details secure, and only disclose to staff that require access.

16.7        If one of your staff who has access to the portal leaves, you are responsible for asking the firm to reset the password for your account.

16.8        The firm cannot be held liable for any failures to deliver services due to transmission errors or unavailability of telecoms networks, or due to the failure or unavailability of any infrastructure. We are also not liable for any loss of or corruption to your data or if the service is interrupted due to your breach of our terms.

16.9        If you determine to cease using the services of the firm, you will inform the firm immediately. On receiving such notification we will immediately cancel all user access to your portal and discuss with you the way ahead.

16.10      The firm reserves the right to modify these terms and conditions under which the portal is offered, and will provide you with due notice before implementation.

17           Limitation of third party rights

17.1        Persons who are not party to this agreement shall have no rights under the Contracts (Rights of Third Parties) Act 1999 to enforce any term of this agreement. This clause does not affect any right or remedy of any person which exists or is available otherwise than pursuant to that Act.

17.2        The advice we give you is for your sole use and is confidential to you and will not constitute advice for any third party to whom you may communicate it, unless we have expressly agreed in writing that a specified third party may rely on our work. We will accept no responsibility to third parties, including any group company to whom the engagement letter is not addressed,  your spouse nor any family member of yours or your employer, for any aspect of our professional services or work that is made available to them.

18           Employment of our staff

18.1        We reserve the right to make a charge in the event of one of the firm’s employees ceasing employment with us in order to work for you.  The additional charge, which is intended to defray replacement recruitment costs, would be 30% of the usual annualised rate of pay of the employee on termination of employment with us.

19           Client identification

19.1        In common with other professional services firms, we are required by the Proceeds to Crime Act 2002 and the Money Laundering, Terrorist Financing and Transfer for Funds (Information on the Payer) Regulations 2017 (MLR 2017) to:

  • maintain identification procedures for clients, beneficial owners of clients, and persons purporting to act on behalf of clients;
  • Maintain records of identification evidence and the work undertaken for the client; and
  • Report, in accordance with the relevant legislation and regulations.

We have a statutory obligation under the above legislation to report to the National Crime Agency (NCA) any reasonable knowledge or suspicion of money laundering. Any such report must be made in the strictest confidence. In fulfilment of our legal obligations, neither the firm’s principals nor may staff enter into any correspondence or discussions with you regarding such matters.

19.2        You agree that we may use personal information provided by you in order to conduct appropriate identity and anti-fraud checks and authorise us to supply this information to a third party Anti Money Laundering compliance specialist to conduct such checks. Personal information that you provide may be disclosed to a credit reference or fraud prevention agency that will check details against any particulars on any database (public or otherwise) to which they have access. Personal information may be retained by the credit reference or fraud prevention agency for the purpose of future identity and anti-fraud checks. A record of the search will be retained. This information provided by you is used by us only to confirm your identity and no credit check is being performed by us. Accordingly, your credit rating will not be affected.

19.3        In addition, we may also request similar information in order to conduct appropriate identity and anti-fraud checks on management and beneficial owners as we consider necessary. You agree to inform such persons of these checks as described in clause 19.1 and 19.2 above.

19.4        The results of the identification and anti-money laundering checks undertaken will be retained securely for the period of our engagement and for the period of five years thereafter and will then be destroyed in accordance with the provisions of the Data Protection Act.

19.5        If we are not able to obtain satisfactory evidence of your identity and where applicable that of the beneficial owners, we will not be able to proceed with the engagement.

19.6        If you undertake business that requires you to be supervised by an appropriate supervisory authority to follow anti-money laundering regulations, including if you accept or make high value cash payments of €10,000 or more (or equivalent in any currency) in exchange for goods, you should inform us.

19.7        Any personal data received from you to comply with our obligations under the MLR 2017 will be processed only for the purposes of preventing money laundering or terrorist financing.  No other use will be made of this personal data unless use of the data is permitted by or under enactment other than the MLR 2017, or we have obtained the consent of the data subject to the proposed use of the data.

20           Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) and Common Reporting Standards

20.1        Unless agreed specifically in a separate engagement letter, we are not responsible for your compliance with the International Tax Compliance (United States of America) Regulations 2013, produced as a result of FATCA.  In particular, we are not responsible for the categorisation of any UK entity into either a Financial Institution (FI) or an active or passive  Non-Financial Foreign Entity (NFFE) nor, if a Financial Institution, for its registration with the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and subsequent submission of the required annual returns to HM Revenue & Customs.

20.2        However, if requested to do so we can provide advice on the completion of the forms supplied by Financial Institutions under these Regulations, or under Common Reporting Standards, and used by them to determine the status of an entity. We can also provide advice on setting up the appropriate systems to identify and report on your clients or beneficiaries who are foreign citizens affected by FATCA or Common Reporting Standards.

21           General Limitation of liability

21.1        We will provide our services with reasonable care and skill. Our liability to you is limited to losses, damages, costs and expenses caused by our negligence or wilful default. However, to the fullest extent permitted by law, we will not be responsible for any losses, penalties, surcharges, interest or additional tax liabilities where you or others supply incorrect or incomplete information, or fail to supply any appropriate information or where you fail to act on our advice or respond promptly to communications from us or the tax authorities.  Further, we will not be liable to you for any delay or failure to perform our obligations if the delay or failure is caused by circumstances outside our reasonable control. Subject to clause 21.5 below, our liability to you shall be limited as set out in our engagement or other client letter.

21.2        You will not hold us, our principals, directors, shareholders and staff, responsible, to the fullest extent permitted by law, for any loss suffered by you arising from any misrepresentation (intentional or unintentional) supplied to us orally or in writing.  This applies equally to fraudulent acts, misrepresentation or wilful default on the part of any party to the transaction and their directors, officers, employees, agents or advisers.  However, this exclusion shall not apply where such misrepresentation, withholding or concealment is or should (in carrying out the procedures which we have agreed to perform with reasonable care and skill) have been evident to us without further enquiry.

21.3        You have agreed that you will not bring any claim in connection with services we provide to you against any of our shareholders, directors or employees personally.

21.4        Our work is not, unless there is a legal or regulatory requirement, to be made available to third parties without our written permission and we will accept no responsibility to third parties for any aspect of our professional services or work that is made available to them. You agree to indemnify us and our agents in respect of any claim (including any claim for negligence) arising out of any unauthorised disclosure by you or by any person for whom you are responsible of our advice and opinions, whether in writing or otherwise. This indemnity will extend to the cost of defending any such claim, including payment at our usual rates for the time that we spend in defending it and our legal fees on an indemnity basis.

21.5        Nothing in this agreement shall exclude or limit our liability for death or personal injury caused by negligence nor for fraudulent misrepresentation or other fraud which may not as a matter of applicable law be excluded or limited.

22           Intellectual property rights and use of our name

22.1        We will retain all intellectual property rights in any document prepared by us during the course of carrying out the engagement except where the law specifically states otherwise. You may only use such rights to the extent we agreed when engaged to provide services to you and may not resell or sublicense such rights without our further prior consent.

22.2        You are not permitted to use our name in any statement or document that you may issue unless our prior written consent has been obtained. The only exception to this restriction would be statements or documents that in accordance with applicable law are to be made public.

23           Draft/interim work or oral advice

23.1        In the course of our providing services to you we may provide advice or reports or other work products in draft or interim form, or orally. However, final written work products will always prevail over any draft, interim or oral statements. Where you request it, we will provide you with written confirmation of matters stated orally. Advice is valid as at the date it was given.

24           Interpretation

24.1        If any provision of our engagement letter or terms of business is held to be void for whatever reason, then that provision will be deemed not to form part of this contract, and no other provisions will be affected or impaired in any way. In the event of any conflict between these terms of business and the engagement letter or appendices, the relevant provision in the engagement letter or schedules will take precedence.

25           Internal disputes within a client

25.1        If we become aware of a dispute between the parties who own the business, or who are in some way involved in its ownership and management, it should be noted that our client is the business (unless we have agreed otherwise) and we would not provide information or services to one party without the express knowledge and permission of all parties. Unless otherwise agreed by all parties, we will continue to supply information to the registered office/normal place of business for the attention of the directors/proprietors/partners/trustees. If conflicting advice, information or instructions are received from different directors/principals in the business, we will refer the matter back to the board of directors/the partnership and take no further action until the board/partnership has agreed the action to be taken. In certain cases we reserve the right to cease acting for the business/client entirely.

26           Advice on long-term care

26.1        No advice is being provided in this regard, and therefore this is expressly excluded from our agreed services.

27           Probate-type services

27.1        As Langdowns DFK is not licensed or authorised for the reserved legal activity of non-contentious probate, any work Langdowns DFK does for you on closely aligned activities, such as estate administration or inheritance tax advice, will not be covered by the ICAEW Probate Compensation Scheme and you will not have access to the Legal Ombudsman, nor is Langdowns DFK’s advice covered by legal professional privilege. Langdowns DFK owns a subsidiary business (Langdowns Ltd), which is licenced and authorised for the reserved legal activity of non-contentious probate, and work on closely aligned activities, such as estate administration or inheritance tax advice. Any instruction for Langdowns Ltd to undertake such activities would be subject to a separate letter of engagement.