COVID-19: BROKER UPDATE FOLLOWING LATEST GOVERNMENT RESTRICTIONS

Sat Mar 28 2020

Dear Member,

The following communication is based on information available at the time of writing (Saturday 28 March 15.30). As you may be aware, regulation in relation to Covid-19 restrictions is rapidly changing. If any of the information contained within this email is rendered obsolete/incorrect by further Government guidance, we shall endeavour to inform you as soon as possible.

Following the Taoiseach’s latest announcement last night regarding emergency measures to tackle the spread of COVID-19, Brokers Ireland has sought clarification in relation to ‘essential service work’. The seven essential service groups were reported to be as follows:

  • Healthcare and social care
  • Public and civil service
  • Utilities
  • Necessary goods food and medicines
  • Financial services
  • Transport
  • Communications including journalists

We have lobbied strongly to have Brokers included within the subsidiary definitions of essential workers. Unofficially, we have been told by the Department of Finance that insurance distribution will be included in the list of essential Financial Services.

We have not yet received the subsidiary list of essential service workers at this time (Saturday 28 March 15:30). Unfortunately, it is further delayed. If it becomes available over the weekend, we shall endeavour to bring it to you as soon as possible.

Brokers should note that the clear direction from the Government is that everyone who can work from home must work from home and this includes essential workers. Some employers are drafting letters for their staff confirming their status as essential to the operation of their offices.

We will update this information as soon as we are in a position to.

Remuneration Document 31 March Deadline

You may have read our communication that the Central Bank is not moving its deadline for the start of the Remuneration Document regulation.  It is coded in law and would require a change in a Statutory Instrument to change it. However, the Bank has indicated flexibility in enforcement. We recommend you use your best endeavours to make the deadline and document any obstacles in your way should you be unable to do so. Such obstacles might include:

  • Your focus on helping clients during the Covid-19 crisis
  • Your health
  • The health and availability of staff
  • Lack of data from providers
  • The availability of internal and external IT/Web resources (being used to help people work from home)

Do up a short document personalised to your firm and hold it on your Central Bank file.

Our compliance department are here to help. They already issued advice on this 2 weeks ago – for a copy please email compliance@brokersireland.ie and one of our compliance staff will ring you back to assist with this or any other compliance matter.

Also if you have an annual return deadline of the 31 March and won’t make this deadline email brokers@centralbank.ie and include a timeline in which you will make your return.

The regulations are moving at a fast pace and we will keep you informed of any change in them. If you have a query on Broker matters, please email us as follows:

We wish you and your families health and well- being in these unprecedented times.

Kind Regards

Diarmuid Kelly

CEO, Brokers Ireland


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