GMS Business Solutions Pty Ltd t/a Smith Shearer and GMS Financial Services (WA) Pty Ltd are committed to providing quality services to you and this policy outlines our ongoing obligations to you in respect of how we manage your Personal Information.
We have adopted the Australian Privacy Principles (APPs) contained in the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) (the Privacy Act). The APPs govern the way in which we collect, use, disclose, store, secure and dispose of your Personal Information.
A copy of the Australian Privacy Principles may be obtained from the website of The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner at www.aoic.gov.au
What is Personal Information and why do we collect it?
Personal Information is information or an opinion that identifies an individual. Examples of Personal Information we collect include: names, addresses, email addresses, phone numbers and tax file numbers for the purpose of lodging your compliance documents.
This Personal Information is obtained in many ways including: interviews, correspondence, by telephone and facsimile, by email, via our website www.smithshearer.com.au, from your website, from media and publications, from other publicly available sources, from cookies and from third parties. We don’t guarantee website links or policies of authorised third parties.
Pursuant to the Corporations Act we are required to collect sufficient information to ensure appropriate advice can be given in respect of recommendations made to our clients. If you elect not to provide us with the personal information this may affect the adequacy or appropriateness of advice given to you. Alternatively, we may elect to terminate our relationship with you if we believe we are unable to provide you with adequate service. Other purposes for which we are required to collect your personal information include:
• Verifying your identity for ATO compliance purposes;
• Managing your ongoing requirements, our ongoing relationship with you and to improve our services;
• Internal functions such as administration, accounting and information technology system requirements;
• Complying with legal and regulatory requirements,
• In order to prevent fraud or crime;
• Sending you offers, updates, articles, newsletters or other information about products and services that we believe will be of interest to you. You may opt out of this at any time by getting in contact with us;
• Enhancing customer service and product options;
• Handling complaints; and
• Giving you educational information, newsletters or opportunities that we believe may be relevant to your financial needs and circumstance
When we collect Personal Information we will, where appropriate and where possible, explain to you why we are collecting the information and how we plan to use it.
Sensitive information is defined in the Privacy Act to include information or opinion about such things as an individual's racial or ethnic origin, political opinions, membership of a political association, religious or philosophical beliefs, membership of a trade union or other professional body, criminal record or health information.
Sensitive information will be used by us only:
• For the primary purpose for which it was obtained
• For a secondary purpose that is directly related to the primary purpose
• With your consent; or where required or authorised by law.
Where reasonable and practicable to do so, we will collect your Personal Information only from you. However, in some circumstances we may be provided with information by third parties. In such a case we will take reasonable steps to ensure that you are made aware of the information provided to us by the third party.
Disclosure of Personal Information
We will not use or disclose personal information collected by us for any purpose other than to perform the professional services you have contracted us to do. We will not use it for anything other than:
• The purposes for which it was provided or secondary related purposes in circumstances where you would reasonably expect such use or disclosure; or
• Where you have consented to such disclosure; or
• Where we are required or authorised under law, in circumstances relating to public health and safety and in connection with certain operations by or on behalf of an enforcement body. Depending on the product or service concerned and particular restrictions on sensitive information, this means that personal information may be disclosed to:
• Financial planners, credit providers and brokers and those who are authorised by us;
• Service providers and specialist advisers to us who have been contracted to provide us with administrative, financial, insurance, accounting, legal, information technology, research or other services;
• Other insurers, credit providers, courts, tribunals and regulatory authorities as agreed or authorised by law; • Credit reporting or reference agencies or insurance investigators;
• External dispute resolution bodies to handle your complaint. Additionally:
• We may be required to make certain information available for inspection by Professional Associations which we or our Authorised Representatives are members of, as part of ongoing compliance with standards.
• We are also obliged pursuant to the Corporations Act to maintain certain transaction records and make those records available for inspection by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.
If you have any concerns in this regard, you should contact us. Generally, we require that organisations outside our group who handle or obtain personal information as service providers acknowledge the confidentiality of this information, undertake to respect any individual’s right to privacy and comply with the privacy law.
Security of Personal Information
Your Personal Information is stored in a manner that reasonably protects it from misuse and loss and from unauthorised access, modification or disclosure.
When your Personal Information is no longer needed for the purpose for which it was obtained, we will take reasonable steps to destroy or permanently de-identify your Personal Information. However, most of the Personal Information is or will be stored in client files which will be kept by us for a minimum of seven years.
Do we send Personal Information to Overseas Recipients?
Some of the entities that we share information with may be located in, or have operations in, other countries. This means that your information might be stored or accessed in overseas countries. You can contact us for further details regarding where we may send your personal information. Personal information may also be processed by staff or by other third parties operating outside Australia who work for us or for one of our suppliers, agents, partners or related companies. When we send information overseas, we will take reasonable steps to ensure that overseas providers do not breach the Privacy Act and that any third parties are subject to a similar level of protection or similar obligations that are offered by the Privacy Act. If you do not agree to the transfer of your personal information outside Australia, please contact us.
Access to your Personal Information
You may access the Personal Information we hold about you and to update and/or correct it, subject to certain exceptions. If you wish to access your Personal Information, please contact us in writing.
Smith Shearer will not charge any fee for your access request, but may charge an administrative fee for providing a copy of your Personal Information.
In order to protect your Personal Information we may require identification from you before releasing the requested information.
Maintaining the Quality of your Personal Information
It is an important to us that your Personal Information is up to date. We will take reasonable steps to make sure that your Personal Information is accurate, complete and up-to-date. If you find that the information we have is not up to date or is inaccurate, please advise us as soon as practicable so we can update our records and ensure we can continue to provide quality services to you.
This Policy may change from time to time and is available on our website.