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Financial Services Guide (FSG)

Introduction

This Financial Services Guide (FSG) provides you with information about State Super Financial Services Australia Limited trading as StatePlus ABN 86 003 742 756 (StatePlus, we, our, or us) to help you decide whether to use the financial services we provide.

This FSG is issued by us and explains:

  • who we are;
  • the services and products which are available to you;
  • how we and our planners are remunerated for these services;
  • how we look after your personal information; and
  • our internal and external complaints handling procedures and how you can access them.

Who are we?

StatePlus is licensed under the Corporations Act to provide financial services and products to you as outlined in this guide. All financial services offered will be provided by a suitably qualified employee of StatePlus. We are a member of the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA), and a Financial Planning Association of Australia (FPA) Professional Partner.

We were established in 1990 to provide specialised financial planning advice on the complexities of NSW public sector defined benefit schemes. In 2016 StatePlus was acquired by First State Super Trustee Corporation (First State Super).

Today, we continue our association with State Trustee Corporation (STC) in providing a range of professional financial planning and investment services which are available to the general public as well as current and former public sector employees and their family members. Our arrangements with STC are regulated under an Access Agreement defining the nature, cost and standard of services to be provided. We also manage the provision of services to members of the First State Super Superannuation Fund and their families under similar arrangements.

StatePlus has offices located across Australia. Go to www.stateplus.com.au/locations for details of our office locations.

You can contact us by:

  • writing to us at GPO Box 5336, Sydney NSW 2001, or
  • calling us on 1800 620 305 or your nearest regional office (see the Contact Us page on our website at www.stateplus.com.au).

Our Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL) number is 238430. In accordance with our obligations under the Corporations Act, we hold professional indemnity insurance in respect of our regulated activities.

When providing financial advice and arranging for product transactions, we act specifically for you under our own financial services licence.

None of First State Super as trustee of the First State Superannuation Scheme, the SAS Trustee Corporation (STC), New South Wales Government or any other Australian Government Authorities - Local, State, Territory or Commonwealth - or the Australian Defence Force, takes any responsibility for any of the services offered by StatePlus. Neither they nor StatePlus guarantees the performance of any product recommended or provided by StatePlus, or provided by First State Super.

Relationship between First State Super and StatePlus

StatePlus is wholly owned by First State Super as trustee of the First State Superannuation Scheme. Where a First State Super product is issued following a recommendation by StatePlus, applicable product fees as detailed in the relevant product disclosure statement (PDS) are received by First State Super or otherwise paid as described in the (PDS).

First State Super’s products are included on StatePlus’ Approved Product List. Neither StatePlus nor its employees receive any commissions from the placement of monies into First State Super.

Some directors of First State Super are also directors of StatePlus.

Superannuation Advice Team

First State Super members only can access simple, single issue advice over the phone at no additional cost. First State Super pay a fee to StatePlus to provide this advice to First State Super members. The cost of providing this service is deducted out of the administration fee First State Super charges it’s members.

The advice and services we can provide you

StatePlus is authorised to provide you with general and personal advice in relation to certain financial products, as well as arrange transactions for you on these products.

We set out below a list of the areas of advice we can help you with as well as the products and services we can arrange.

We can provide advice in the following areas:

  • Superannuation
  • Retirement planning
  • Wealth creation
  • Cashflow and budgeting management
  • Retrenchment and redundancy planning
  • Access Centrelink and other government benefits
  • Aged care issues
  • Personal risk management including life insurances
  • Securities*
  • *limited to general advice on securities as an asset class

We can arrange for the following products and services:

  • Deposit products
  • Superannuation
  • Retirement income streams, and annuities
  • Managed investments, excluding investor directed portfolios services
  • Government debentures, stocks and bonds
  • Life insurance products, including insurance bonds and funeral bonds
  • Life risk insurance products

Our planners will only recommend financial products which have been authorised by us. While there may be other products on the market that may also suit your circumstances, our planners will only recommend products that we or First State Super issue, or other products that have been thoroughly researched and we consider meet the needs of our clients.

Superannuation Advice Team

For First State Super members accessing simple, single issue advice, it will be limited to their existing superannuation interest, in the First State Super Superannuation Scheme.

Other documents you may receive from us

When we provide you with personal advice, you will normally receive a Statement of Advice (SoA). Your SoA will include important information regarding the basis of the advice, details of the fees that apply to the recommended products and details of remuneration paid (if any) in relation to the advice.

If we provide you with further advice, another SoA may not be required. Where another SoA is not required, we may provide you with a Record of Advice (RoA).

You can ask for a copy of these at any time from your financial planner or by contacting us using the details in this guide.

If we recommend a new financial product we will also provide you with the relevant PDS. The PDS contains information about the particular product including details of features and benefits and the fees and charges. It will assist you in making an informed decision about the product.

Paying for the services we provide

StatePlus offers different ways of getting advice, you can:

  • Partner with StatePlus for regular advice;
  • Work with one of our planners whenever you need;

You can elect to see a planner at one of our locations, or you can talk to a planner over the phone, giving you choice and flexibility in how you want to deal with us.

No fee is payable for your initial appointment with a StatePlus financial planner. This provides an opportunity for us to get to know you and to understand your situation, your financial needs and the complexity of the potential advice required.

The fee charged to you will depend on:

  • The nature of the advice we provide;
  • Whether the advice is needed for a specific situation or is ongoing;
  • Whether the advice is relatively simple such as making additional contributions to your super fund; or
  • More complex such as developing your retirement plan.

Once your advice needs are identified, we will discuss and agree the fees and the scope of advice with you. This will be documented in a Terms of Engagement and you will therefore know the services to be provided to you and an estimate of what they will cost, before any services commence.

The actual costs will also be outlined in your advice document when the advice is finalised.

You may choose to pay fees directly to us or where possible, they may be deducted from your product.

Superannuation Advice Team

Advice received by First State Super members is limited to their existing interest in the First State Super Superannuation Scheme and is provided at no additional cost. First State Super pays StatePlus a fee to provide this service. The cost of providing this service is deducted out of the administration fee First State Super charges it’s members.

Our fees

The fees you pay for our advice and services will reflect the advice you need and may be based on:

  • A set dollar amount that is agreed between you and us where the advice is for a one off event. Event fees can range between $660 and $8,500 (including GST) depending on the complexity of the advice; or
  • A percentage based fee for ongoing advice of up to 0.75% pa of the value of assets in the products you hold, up to the maximum advice fee of $8,000 (including GST). The fee can be deducted from your product(s) and paid to us. Where deducted from a product, the fee is generally calculated daily and deducted from your account, monthly, in arrears; or
  • A combination of the above.

For clients who are existing investors in eligible products StatePlus generally does not charge a separate fee for providing financial planning advice and services to you:

  • If you are an existing investor in one of the relevant superannuation funds or managed investment schemes that we operate, we will receive a single ongoing management fee that covers the cost of investment management and administration as well as gaining access to most advice services. For further information in relation to the management fee please refer to the relevant PDS.
  • If the advice we provide to you is in relation to ‘specialist advice’ (personal insurances, aged care or voluntary redundancy), we may charge you an additional one off fee. The actual fee payable will be agreed with you prior to providing you with our advice and will be confirmed in documentation received from us. You are able to pay the advice fee directly to us.

What benefits are received?

StatePlus is paid the product fees described in the PDSs for the products it issues, as well as the advice fees described in the previous section.

Employees of StatePlus are paid a salary and may be eligible for an incentive payment twice a year based on the achievement of pre-determined compliance and service standards and business objectives. These payments cannot be ascertained at the time this FSG is provided to you.

All salaries and incentives paid to employees are from the fees and commissions we receive for providing advice and operating our superannuation funds and managed investment schemes. They are not an additional cost to you.

As part of the payment for advice services that involve insurance, StatePlus may receive commissions from the life insurer recommended to you. These payments are not a further cost to you.

This upfront commission is up to 66% of the initial annual premium amount. For example, if your insurance premium is $2,000 the life insurance provider may pay StatePlus an upfront commission amount of up to 66%, equivalent to $1,320 (including GST). In addition to the upfront commission payment, StatePlus may also receive ongoing commissions of up to 22% per annum based on the renewal of your premium for as long as you hold the policy.

The amounts that are received by StatePlus will be disclosed in the advice document once a product is recommended.

Superannuation Advice Team

StatePlus Superannuation Advisers are paid a salary and may be eligible for an incentive payment once a year based on the achievement of pre-determined compliance and service standards and business objectives. These payments cannot be ascertained at the time this FSG is provided to you.

Alternative forms of remuneration

StatePlus financial planners, Executives and Directors may receive the occasional gift or invitations to events from a product provider or referral partnership, although it is rare. Details of any alternative forms of remuneration are available on a specially maintained Register which is available for your viewing from Head Office.

How is my personal information dealt with?

At StatePlus the privacy of your personal information is important to us.

We collect your personal information to ensure we are able to provide you with the advice, products and services most appropriate to your needs. We maintain a record of your personal profile which can include details of your needs and objectives and your individual financial situation generally.

You may request access to the personal information that we hold about you by writing to us as outlined in our privacy brochure. A copy of our privacy brochure is available at each of our regional offices or on our website at www.stateplus.com.au/privacy-policy.

What should I do if I have a complaint?

If, for any reason, you are not satisfied with the advice or service you receive from us, you are entitled to make a complaint. We have established procedures to ensure all complaints are resolved quickly and fairly, free of charge.

If you wish to make a complaint about any aspect of our advice or service you should:

  1. Lodge your complaint with the regional office employee you deal with; and/or
  2. Contact the local Regional Manager of the office where you received advice.

Alternatively, you can contact the Complaints Manager by writing to us at GPO Box 5336 SYDNEY NSW 2001 or by email to complaints@stateplus.com.au

External complaint handling processes

If you do not receive a satisfactory outcome to your complaint you can lodge a complaint with an external complaints handling service.

The Superannuation Complaints Tribunal (SCT) can deal with matters regarding the conduct and decisions of trustees of superannuation funds and insurers in relation to insurance benefits provided under superannuation funds. Should your complaint not be satisfactorily resolved within 90 days, the matter may be referred to the SCT. Contact details for the SCT are as follows:

Locked Bag 3060, Melbourne VICTORIA 3001
Tel: 1300 884 114
Fax: +61 3 8635 5588
E-mail: info@sct.gov.au or
Website: www.sct.gov.au

The Financial Ombudsman Service (FOS) will consider all other matters. You should contact FOS if your complaint has not been satisfactorily resolved within 45 days of making a complaint.

Contact details for FOS are as follows:

GPO Box 3, Melbourne VICTORIA 3001
Tel: 1800 367 287
International callers: +61 3 9613 7366
Fax: 03 9613 6399
E-mail: info@fos.org.au
Website: www.fos.org.au

The Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) also has an info line on 1300 300 630 which you may use to make a complaint or obtain information about your rights.

If you have concerns involving ethical and professional conduct, you may wish to consider raising your concerns with the Financial Planning Association of Australia (FPA). They can be contacted at GPO Box 4285, Sydney NSW 2001.

These services are provided to you free of charge.

Contact Us

If you have any questions about the products or services provided by StatePlus please contact your local regional office or 1800 620 305.



Issue date: 1 July 2018