Caasta Limited Compliance Manual

Cassta Limited is part of the Green Bison Group. Green Bison Limited T/A Caasta Limited (“the firm”) is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (“FCA”) for:

Firms that are authorised and regulated by the FCA must comply with the FCA’s 11 Principles for Businesses and the FCA’s rules and are required to have written procedures to ensure that they do so. This Compliance Manual explains the procedures that the firm, its employees and agents must follow to ensure compliance with FCA rules.

Failure to follow these procedures is a serious matter and may result in disciplinary action being taken. All employees and agents are required to familiarise themselves with the contents of this Compliance Manual. SCOPE OF REGULATION The FCA regulates the sale of “regulated consumer hire agreements”. “Regulated consumer hire agreements” are agreements between a funder and an individual, a sole trader or small partnership of up to 3 partners for the hiring or leasing of vehicles where the agreement is capable of lasting for more than 3 months.

FCA does not regulate agreements arranged for limited companies or partnerships with more than 3 partners. FCA’s PRINCIPLES FOR BUSINESSES The following are the FCA’s 11 principles for businesses with which all regulated firms must comply:

  1. A firm must conduct its business with integrity.
  2. A firm must conduct its business with due skill, care and diligence.
  3. A firm must take reasonable care to organise and control its affairs responsibly and effectively, with adequate risk management systems.
  4. A firm must maintain adequate financial resources.
  5. A firm must observe proper standards of market conduct.
  6. A firm must pay due regard to the interests of its customers and treat them fairly
  7. A firm must pay due regard to the information needs of its clients and communicate information to them in a way which is clear, fair and not misleading.
  8. A firm must manage conflicts of interest fairly, both between itself and its customers and between a customer and another client.
  9. A firm must take reasonable care to ensure the suitability of its advice and discretionary decisions for any customer who is entitled to rely upon its judgment.
  10. A firm must arrange adequate protection for clients' assets when it is responsible for them.
  11. A firm must deal with its regulators in an open and cooperative way and must disclose to the appropriate regulator appropriately anything relating to the firm of which that regulator would reasonably expect notice.

BVRLA CODE In addition to being authorised and regulated by FCA the firm is also a member of the BVRLA and, as a member, is bound by the BVRLA Leasing Broker Code of Conduct. As such the firm agrees to comply with the following principles:

  1. To provide clear pricing for all products and services sold via any sales channel, printed or digital, which promotes a member’s products.
  2. Not to misrepresent information about any of their products or services
  3. To behave always with integrity and ensure that any agents working on their behalf also follow the standards set out in this Code of Conduct.
  4. To understand and comply with all rules and regulations relating to the service or product provided.
  5. To provide customers with the information they need to make an informed decision about the product/service offered.
  6. To operate from an established place of business that is maintained to a professional standard.
  7. Not to use any advertising material containing misleading or inaccurate statements and to comply with the codes and standards set by the regulators.
  8. To resolve customer complaints according to the standards set out in this Code of Conduct.
  9. To ensure that employees, where appropriate, are adequately trained to a standard that enables them to adhere to this Code of Conduct.
  10. To display the BVRLA logo.

Treating Customer Fairly

FCA Principle 6 requires authorised firms to pay due regard to the interests of their customers and to treat them fairly. FCA has specified six treating customers fairly (“TCF”) outcomes that firms should seek to achieve for their customers:

If any employee considers that one or more customers may not have been treated fairly this should be reported immediately to either Keir Jones or Lavinia Marshall who will review the matter and determine what, if any, action is required.

Approved Persons

As an FCA authorised firm, certain persons who perform roles specified as “controlled functions” by FCA must be formally vetted and approved by FCA before they can take on those roles.

As Green Bison is authorised by FCA with limited permission this only affects the person responsible for apportioning roles within the business and for the general oversight of the business. This is the Chief Executive, Keir Jones.

Before the firm can put forward a person to FCA for approval, the firm must satisfy itself that the person is “fit and proper” by checking their background, skills and experience. In order to satisfy this requirement Caasta Limited will:

Keir Jones will review the information to determine whether it is appropriate for the firm to support the application to FCA for approval and, if so, will countersign the Form A and submit it to FCA.

The person will not be allowed to commence their role until approval has been received from FCA.

Before taking on a role as an FCA Approved Person, an individual will be required to familiarise themselves with the Statements of Principle and Code of Practice for Approved Persons in the APER section of the FCA Handbook. Additional training on the role and responsibilities of an approved person will be provided if required.

Green Bison Limited is required to notify FCA of any changes to the personal details of approved persons and any material change to their personal circumstances that affects the information provided to FCA on their Form A.

Approved persons must notify Keir Jones immediately if there is any change to the information provided to FCA on their Form A.

Recruitment and Training

Green Bison Limited is required to ensure that employees have the right skills and experience to perform their roles. Before appointing new employees or agents the firm will obtain references from the individual’s previous employer. All employees engaged in FCA regulated activities will receive periodic training and testing from partners on:

Lavinia Marshall maintains a register of all training given to employees.

Financial Promotions

All financial promotions issued by Green Bison Limited must comply with FCA rules. FCA defines a financial promotion as an invitation or inducement to engage in an FCA regulated activity. This will cover any form of advertising or marketing issued by the firm in respect of FCA regulated vehicle hire agreements. This includes:

Records of approved financial promotions will be kept for at least 6 years from the date that the financial promotion was last issued. SALES PROCESS FCA regulated firms are required to pay due regard to the information needs of their clients and communicate information to them clearly, fair and not misleading.

There are detailed rules regarding information that must be provided to customers before, during and after the sale.

When speaking to customers, employees must be aware of customers’ information needs and communicate with them in a way which is clear, fair and not misleading, taking care to ensure that customers understand all the key features of the finance agreement, including:

Following the initial discussion, the customer will be sent or given:

The customer will complete the membership application, sign the form electronically. Green Bison Limited will either give or send to the customer by email the information required in the FCA rules and other relevant regulations, including where appropriate:

Cancellations

Customers have a 14-day cooling off period during which they can cancel their membership and receive a full refund of their annual membership. If the customer cancels their membership outside the 14-day cooling off period, the annual membership will not be refunded.

Complaints

FCA define a complaint as “any oral or written expression of dissatisfaction, whether justified or not.” Complaints can be made by a customer or by someone acting on their behalf. If Caasta Limited receives a complaint about an FCA regulated activity, then it must be handled in accordance with FCA and BVRLA rules.

All complaints must be passed immediately to Lavinia Marshall for investigation and response. Lavinia Marshall will handle complaints in accordance with the following procedures:

The response will include a copy of the leaflet “Your complaint and the Ombudsman”. The final response will either: Accept the complaint and, where appropriate, offer redress; or Offer redress on an ex gratia basis without accepting the complaint; or Reject the complaint; or Advise the customer of why Green Bison Limited has been unable to complete its investigations and indicate when we expect to do so.

If the customer chooses to refer their complaint to the Financial Ombudsman, Lavinia Marshall will ensure that all information requested by the Financial Ombudsman is provided promptly and will cooperate with the Ombudsman in the investigation and resolution of the complaint.

Where it is determined that, in order to resolve a complaint, an offer of redress is appropriate this must be approved by Keir Jones. Green Bison Limited maintains a register of all complaints about FCA regulated activities.

This register includes the following information:

Financial Crime

As a lease broker Green Bison Limited is not covered by the detailed Money Laundering Regulations however the firm is still required to put in place systems and procedures to counter the risk that the firm might be used to further financial crime.

In order to fulfil this requirement, the firm provides training to employees and agents on identifying and reporting suspicious activity. Caasta Limited also meets any requirements imposed by funders including, where required, procedures for the verification of identity of potential customers.

If potential money laundering or financial crime is suspected, it must be reported immediately to Keir Jones or Lavinia Marshall. They will then determine what further action is required. Keir Jones and Lavinia Marshall will keep a log of all suspicious activity reports and the action taken.

Conflict of Interest

As an FCA regulated firm, Green Bison is required to manage any conflicts of interest that arise in the course of business. Conflicts of interest are circumstances where the interests of the firm or its employees and agents might conflict with those of the customer and so there is a risk of a poor outcome for the customer.

An example might be where the firm or its employees or agents have a relationship with a supplier that might result in the firm or its employees favouring that supplier to the detriment of the customer.

Employees are required to report any potential conflicts of interest to Lavinia Marshall who will keep a register of them and will ensure that appropriate controls are put in place to prevent any potential conflicts acting to the detriment of customers.

Whistleblowing

Under the Public Interest Disclosure Act if employees or agents have genuine concerns regarding unlawful conduct or financial malpractice at Caasta Limited can raise those concerns in confidence.

Provided the employee or agent acts in good faith they will not be at risk of losing their job or any other penalty even if it turns out that their concerns were mistaken.

If employees or agents have genuine concerns, they should report them to Keir Jones either verbally or in writing at the earliest possible stage. Keir Jones will then assess the concern to determine what action should be taken. If you request it, you will be provided with a written summary of your concern and the proposed course of action.

If your concern relates to a material breach of the FCA rules and you feel that you may be penalised if you raise the matter internally, you can report the matter directly to the FCA by calling 0207 066 9200 or emailing whistle@fca.org.uk.

You can also write to The Intelligence Department (PIDA), Financial Conduct Authority, 25 North Colonnade, London E14 5HS. DISCLOSURE OF INFORMATION ON WEBSITE Green Bison Limited deals with customers both at a distance and face to face.

The firm will make the following information available to its customers on its website:

Data Protection

Green Bison Limited has certain obligations under the Data Protection Act in relation to personal data it holds and processes about living individuals. This includes data about customers, employees and agents.

Data covers not only information held electronically but also information held in paper files. The firm must comply with 8 Data Protection Principles, as follows:

  1. Personal data shall be processed fairly and lawfully.
  2. Personal data shall be obtained only for one or more specified and lawful purposes and shall not be further processed in any manner incompatible with that purpose or those purposes.
  3. Personal data shall be adequate, relevant and not excessive in relation to the purpose or purposes for which they are processed.
  4. Personal data shall be accurate and, where necessary, kept up to date.
  5. Personal data processed for any purpose or purposes shall not be kept for longer than is necessary for that purpose or those purposes.
  6. Personal data shall be processed in accordance with the rights of data subjects under this Act.
  7. Appropriate technical and organisational measures shall be taken against unauthorised or unlawful processing of personal data and against accidental loss or destruction of, or damage to, personal data.
  8. Personal data shall not be transferred to a country or territory outside the European Economic Area unless that country or territory ensures an adequate level of protection for the rights and freedoms of data subjects in relation to the processing of personal data.

Customers have the right to request access to copies of data that the firm holds about them. If a request for access to data is received it should be forwarded immediately to Lavinia Marshall for action.

In order to ensure that electronic data is held securely all systems are password protected and data is backed up regularly. Paper files containing personal must be stored in locked cabinets. It is particularly important to verify the identity of individuals before releasing any personal data.

For communications by email, correspondence should only be sent to verified email addresses provided by the customer. Before discussing personal information on the telephone employees and agents should verify the identity of the customer by asking the customer to confirm at least 2 of the following:

Compliance Monitoring

Green Bison Limited is required to ensure that the firm, its employees and agents comply with FCA rules and other requirements under the UK regulatory system.

In order to do so, the firm has established a Compliance Monitoring Plan to monitor adherence to the procedures in this Compliance Manual. The firm will take action to address any issues identified. Where appropriate this may include disciplinary action against employees or agents. If you have any queries regarding the procedures in this manual or your obligations, you should contact Keir Jones or Lavinia Marshall immediately.

Monthly/quarterly reports and management information are provided to the director of Caasta Limited so that can monitor the effectiveness of the firm’s compliance systems and procedures can be monitored.

This includes management information related to key performance indicators:

FCA Reporting

As a regulated firm, Green Bison is required to make periodic returns to FCA using the FCA GABRIEL online system. There is an automatic fine of £250 for failure to submit a report on time and persistent failure to do so could result in disciplinary action against the firm. It is the responsibility of Keir Jones to prepare and submit the periodic returns to FCA on time.

In addition, it is a requirement that the firm deals with the FCA in an open and cooperative way and discloses promptly to the FCA anything of which the FCA might reasonably expect notice.

This would include any material breaches of FCA’s rules. For this reason, if any employee or agent becomes aware of any breach of the procedures in this Compliance Manual, they must report the matter immediately to Keir Jones. Keir Jones will maintain a register of all breaches and will determine whether a breach is material and should be reported to FCA.