What is Informed Consent?
Informed Consent means a Client's voluntary decision to accept a Financial Planning Service from a Member that is given with the knowledge and understanding of the costs, benefits and risks involved including the potential consequences of any proposed transaction and without coercion or inappropriate pressure by the Member. Informed Consent requires the Member to fully inform the Client by providing all relevant information that bears upon the decision, including the monetary and non-monetary benefits to the Member and any third party provider. It requires the Member to carefully explain the information in a manner that is understandable to the Client bearing in mind the likely imbalance of knowledge between the Member and the Client. Informed Consent also requires the Client to be given sufficient time to form an opinion about the information and any proposed transaction. (Australian Professional Ethical Standards 230)
Why is it important to our clients?
Informed consent is important for our clients as it is recognition that they have been disclosed with, and have a full appreciation and understanding of the relevant facts in relation to the charging for services, as well as the implications of what they are agreeing to.
Why is it important to us?
By providing mortgage broking services to our clients our remuneration (via loan commission trails) is conflicted, i.e. it could reasonably be expected to influence the choice of financial product that we recommend.
Informed Consent, when applied in conjunction with other safeguards, is seen as a way of reducing to an Acceptable Level the threats posed by conflicted remuneration.
Elements of valid informed consent
For an individual to give valid informed consent, three components must be present:
Disclosure requires us to supply the client with the information necessary to make an autonomous decision. We must ensure that subjects have adequate comprehension of the information provided.
Capacity pertains to the ability of the client to both understand the information provided and form a reasonable judgment based on the potential consequences of their decision. In common law jurisdictions, adults are presumed competent to consent.
Voluntariness refers to the client's right to freely exercise their decision making without being subjected to external pressure such as coercion, manipulation, or undue influence.
To obtain a copy of our Informed Consent checklist please click here.
We require your written informed consent prior to completing a loan application.
If you have any queries regarding informed consent please contact our office.