Terms & Conditions

Terms & Conditions (Generic)

Ascendia is a team of different professions and different professional firms which are regulated and licensed as required by the Australian regulatory framework to provide their respective professional service areas. 

Who am I doing business with? 

Accountancy Services

Experienced Public Accountants providing effective and accurate compliance and business services at great value.

Each Accounting company is regulated by the Australian Taxation Office in the first instance - in its capacity as a registered corporate tax agent. It is also regulated under the Australian Corporations Act, Trade Practices Act and other relevant business law.

All taxation and accounting services are provided by these companies. 

Each company provides services for its respective client base. The 3 accounting firms co-operate in branding and marketing, but are each independently owned, and independently operated by each principal. The companies are:

  • Ascendia Accountants (Brisbane) Pty. Ltd.
  • Ascendia Accountants (Maroochydore) Pty. Ltd.
  • Ascendia Accountants (Noosa) Pty. Ltd.

The accounting companies do not provide personal financial planning or investment advice as regulated by the Australian Securities & Investment Commission (ASIC). This service is provided, as required by the ASIC, by Ascendia Investment Management Pty. Ltd.

Similarly these accounting companies do not provide legal services - which is provided by Ascendia Lawyers Pty. Ltd. which is outlined below.

Investment Management & Advisory Services

Independently licensed investment advisers and managers providing prudent portfolio management

These companies are regulated in the first instance by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), which has specific and sole responsibility for regulating Australian Financial Services Licensees and their Authorised Representatives in their professional capacities. The business is also regulated in general terms like most companies also by the Australian Taxation Office and ASIC in respect of the Corporations Law generally.

Ascendia Investment Management Pty. Ltd. is a corporate authorised representative of Ascendia Pty. Ltd. AFSL 307308 and is fully authorised and regulated to provide investment and financial advice and management services.

This business does not provide taxation or accounting advice or services as regulated by the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) and is not a registered tax agent. These services are provided by Ascendia Accounting Pty. Ltd. 

Legal Services

Commercial, property and estates lawyers providing solutions and opportunities

This service is provided by Ascendia Lawyers Pty.Ltd. an incorporated legal practice.

What exactly will you do for me when I hire you?

Our standard engagement letter is provided to you when you engage us, so we know what you expect of us, and you know what we will be able to deliver. 

This is called our Professional Engagement, Service Provision and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter.

This is provided to you by email when you hire us. The most up to date version of this is also available on this web site at any time - Professional Engagement, Service Provision and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter.

Accountancy Services:

The scope of our engagements / services are designed to enable us to do the job you require without wasting our time and your money on matters that are not relevant to our engagement by you. In many cases we can discuss this further with you, if you wish, at the time that you engage us.

While our terms of engagment may in special circumstances need to be tailored to your specific situation (in a letter from us to you which supplements our standard engagement), our standard engagement covers most services and circumstances.

Accountancy Services - Standard Engagement:

  • Tax Returns
  • Group / Business Financial Accounts
  • BAS & IAS Preparation & Lodgment (your bookkeeping)
  • Tax Payment Plan Applications to ATO
  • Applications for Remittance of ATO Penalties or Interest
  • Amendment of Prior Tax Returns and Submission of Overdue Tax Returns.
  • Business Bookkeeping, BAS / IAS preparation & lodgment (our bookkeeping)
  • Superannuation Accounts & Tax Return
  • Management Rights Audit Services
  • P&L For Sale Reports

Accountancy Services - Specialised Engagement:

As explained above, for some specialised services we provide a specialised engagement letter that supplements our standard engagement letter. This applies for instance for:

  • Solicitor Trust Account Audits
  • Accountant Trust Account Audits
  • Real Estate Agent Trust Account Audits
  • Due Diligence / Financial Verification for Purchaser or Financier
  • Due Diligence & Valuation / Financial Verification for Purchaser or Financier
Investment Management Services:
 
Investment Management (including Financial and Personal Insurance) engagments are tailored to your specific matters and circumstances.
 
The standard minimal compliance related investment service - for SMSF Trustee clients of Ascendia - are outlined in our Standard / Generic Professional Engagement, Service Provision and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter.  This is an implementation only service where we provide documetnation of Trustee directions. Personal advice tailored to your SMSF's circumstances is available to SMSF Trustees through out specialised engagements / services outlined below.
 
All other Financial, Investment and Personal Insurance services are provided through an engement tailored to your circumstances outlined in the provision of a Statement or Record of Advice for you. All fees are outlined in this document which is always in writing. This supplements our generic terms and conditions of trade and credit. Generic terms and conditions of service that apply to all investment, financial and personal insurance services are the generic terms of commercial trade and credit, and records management policies, which are outlined further below.
 
Engagement and service provision by Ascendia Investment Management is provided based on the information you have made available to us, and services are implemented after you have considered a written Statement or Record of Advice.

We do not provide verbal or email based advice - advice is only available in a Statement or Record Of Advice document that is clearly indicated as such.

Before we implement services / advice - on your behalf - your written authorisation is required. Services we provide in this way are:

  • Financial Advisory
  • Investment Advisory
  • Investment Advisory & Management
  • Personal Insurance Review and Implementation

Legal Services:

Legal engagments are tailored to your specific matters and circumstances.
 
The standard minimal compliance related legal services - for Tax clients of Ascendia - are outlined in our Standard / Generic Professional Engagement, Service Provision and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter.
 
All other legal services are provided through an additional Legal Engagement. Where the fees are more than $1,500 this will be in writing.
 
Generic terms and conditions of service that apply to all legal services are the generic terms of commercial trade and credit, and records management policies, which are outlined further below.
 

What is the Scope of Your Service? (Summary)

1. Scope of Service

All advice and service is provided specifically and only for the private use of the person or entity to whom it is provided.

This is because individual personal and business requirements and circumstances vary. Accordingly we ask that you maintain the confidentiality of your advice documentation, accounts and reports so that friends and colleagues do not act on such advice or information to their potential detriment.

The scope of our service to you is outlined on this web page, in the engagement letters and the work completed cover letters that we provide you.

2. Professional Advice

In addition, all our professional advice is provided in writing and on letterhead only (and may be attached to an email) or in an Statement OR Record of Advice Letterhead, we do not provide professional advice in any other form.  Advice is provided for a fee for service at our professional rates after appropriate research and review.

This is because the implications of advice can take some time to fully appreciate, and can involve matters you may not be initially familiar with.  It is also a legal requirement.

Any correspondence by email (without advice on letterhead attached) or verbal communication provided by our staff or associates, is general information only, provided as a rough guide, general information service or basic outline only, it is not professional accounting or tax advice and as such cannot and should not be relied on.

Written advice documentation is from time to time supplemented with verbal explanation, as required by clients. In this instance the written professional advice on letterhead is the actual advice that can be relied on.

No action is taken by us in relation to advice we have provided - until a client fully understands and authorises action required.

3. Continuity Of Our Service To You

It is a general term of our trade that if you supply, allow the supply, continue the supply, or do not remove our ongoing access - to your financial records - that this is a request and authorisation to us to provide and continue to provide our services to you, and undertake and continue to undertake work for you in accordance with our terms unless you have notified us in writing otherwise.

You can appreciate that with such important matters pertaining to your business and / or tax affairs, and your reliance on us - if you want us to stop work - we need to be notified in writing.

4. Please Ensure You Keep Yourself Informed Of Our Terms

A fundamental and general term of our trade with you is that you make yourself familiar with our terms and policies as outlined on this web site, and with our Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions as oulined in our Professional Services Engagment Letter(s) as supplied to you from time to time and as may be made available from time to time as a generic letter on this web site, or by requesting a personally tailored engagement letter if you do not have one, by emailing us at at info@ascendia.com.au

We have to change / update all of our terms and policies from time to time as a normal part of our business improvement process, as all businesses do.

As a result it is also a general term of our trade that you keep yourself up to date with any changes to our terms and policies that occur from time to time, by:

(a) reference to this web site, and

(b) by requesting as necessary updated Professional Services Engagement Letters from us via the abovementioned email address.

5. Ways You Can Access Our Terms

As a courtesy to you, from time to time we may provide you, in hard copy or by email, with the most up to date version of our Professional Engagement, Services Provision and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter (and thus relevant terms).

We have also provided, for convenient reference for you, on this web page, with access to a summary of :

  • Our latest / updated Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter available on request email to info@ascendia.com.au or by download from this web page here.
  • The latest updated Generic Ascendia Terms of Trade and Credit available on request email to info@ascendia.com.au or by download from this web page here.
  • Our Records and Information Management Policy and Terms (available here on this web page below).

You can also call or email us and request a copy of our standard Professional Engagement, Service Provision and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter - which contains a number of professional terms of trade - by emailing us at info@ascendia.com.au

We also provide you on the footer of all our formal email correspondence with you - a link to this web site for your convenience and review. You can also access this web page from the footer of every web page on this site.

You can also click here to download a copy of our standard Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions

6. Professional Service Engagement

When you engage us to become your accountant and / or tax agent we have considerable legal responsibilities toward you.

We have set out our obligations and what you can expect from us clearly on this web site and in our engagement documents including our Generic Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter.

There may be additional specialised engagment documents needed depending on what service you require.

If you want to engage us - please email or telephone or complete the relevant form on this web site.

In some instances we will prepare and forward you the appropriate specilaised engagement documents - which must be tailored to your situation (and include all relevant personal and private details including ABN's, ACN's full name and date of birth etc.) before we will agree to start an appointment or engagement by you.

In some other instances we may undertake a job or engagment for you without signed enagement letters from you where for instance:

1. You have requested we undertake the work without a written engagement letter signed up front - and we have agreed to do so

2. You have requested we do the work but you have not requested an engagment in writing for your signature -  and we have been happy to undertake the work on a verbal engagement basis.

In the instance of us agreeing to complete work without a written engagment or appointment by you in the form of our professional engagment letters we agree to undertake the work only in accordance with the policies, term and conditions of our service as outlined in our standard Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter and by requesting our service you agree to these terms.

Once you have engaged us we have an obligation to provide a level of service in accordance with the various regulatory requirements as well as consistent with the professional standards of the professional associations to which we are affiliated.

As a result regardless of whether you sign off on the specific Professional Services Engagement Letters we may send you - these engagement letters and their terms also apply. We are not able to provide service on any other terms.

It is a general term of our trade that you take responsibility to familiarise yourself with our Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter that we may send you - in respect of any professional service supplied to you.

You can do this by:

Reading the Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter we have supplied and forwarded to you already - or if we have not done this,

By requesting a Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter be forwarded to you, and by reviewing it.

If you have not received a Professional Services Enagement Letter you could contact us and advise us of this at info@ascendia.com.au . We may prepare and send you a relevant Professional Services Engagement Letter as applicable accordingly.

If you have any questions about a Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter you have received, you should contact us by email at info@ascendia.com.au  and outline your questions. We will answer any questions including the reasons for any of the terms in the relevant Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter applicable to your services if you would like this.

We may continue to undertake service without your sign off on an updated Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter which we may provide you.

Nevertheless we only provide services in accordance with:

  • Our latest / updated Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter available on request email to info@ascendia.com.au or by download from this web page here.
  • The latest updated Generic Ascendia Terms of Trade and Credit available on request email to info@ascendia.com.au or by download from this web page here.
  • Our Records and Information Management Policy and Terms (available here on this web page below).

Termination Of Our Engagement

We are not obliged to take your business and in some circumstances we may have to decline to assist a prospective client. This is consistent with our professional ethics and regulatory duties.

You are able to terminate our engagement in writing at any time.  A written privacy release from you is also required for us to be able to release client records to your new advisers.

We are also able to terminate the engagement in writing at any time. This is very rare and has only occurred in unusual circumstances, such as failure to pay accounts, behaviour that we regard as extremely rude or aggressive behaviour by clients or of course requests for or undertaking of suspected unethical or illegal behaviour.

7. What Are Your Terms of Payment and Credit?

Our fees for all services are based on professional charge out rates that change from time to time. We are not obliged to restate these to you after you have engaged us.  Our rates are consistent with those outlined by the professional associations. We publish our current rates in our Generic Engagement Letter available on this web page above.

Rates applicable also vary depending on the level of work required. Our rates are all published in our engagement letters that you will see when you obtain them from us (by request by email or telephone contact). Our principals can provide information about estimated expected costs in discussion with you about the work required.

We are able to provide estimates of fees however our charges are based on the time it takes to do a professional job to the standard required by the regulatory environment. We will endevour to communicate clearly and as soon as practicable with you if and as soon as we become fully aware that a job is going to take longer than expected and we are able to advise you a new estimate of the time and cost to complete the job.  We will advise you of your alternatives where available at that time.

Standard Payment Terms

Our standard payment terms are payment on delivery of service completion and prior to lodgement of your tax returns.

We do not lodge your tax returns unless we have received payment of your account in full. This is due to the credit terms of our financiers who are the suppliers of the credit you use when you use our credit.

We accept:

Cash
Personal Cheques
Bank Cheques
Visa Card
Master Card
EFT-POS
B-PAY
EFT transfer

If you choose not to make payment on delivery of the service our standard terms and conditions of credit apply. By choosing not to make payment at the time of completion you are choosing to apply for credit from us on our terms of credit. We will automatically accept your application unless we advise otherwise within 5 working days.

Terms and Conditions of Credit - Your Alternative to Paying Straight Away

If you do not wish to agree to these terms and conditions of credit simply ensure you make payment at the time the service is provided / at completion of the job.

If you choose not to pay at the time the service is provided we will treat this as a credit application by you - on our standard terms and conditions of credit - alternatively you can pay us at the time we provide the service.  Where we choose to extend our credit to you this serves as our acceptance of your application, in accordance with our terms and conditions of credit.

For all clients, including those who have used our credit, we still require payment of all outstanding invoices prior to the lodgement of tax returns, as this represents the end of our work period for you for that year, and the beginning of another years work. This has been our policy since 2010.

Our clients benefit from our extension of credit until their lodgement date each year. We currently do not charge interest or account fees on our credit accounts.

We are able to charge interest and late charges at our discretion - up to a reasonable limit outlined in our terms of credit details - which are linked to this page as a .pdf file. We use this discretion where acocunts are overdue substantially. We will give you advance warning if we are intending this and you will have the opportunity to pay out your account in this event.

We have summarised these terms below on thi sweb page and also provided a full copy of these terms for your information and convenience as a link to our standard credfit terms on this web page below. These conditions are the same terms and conditions that you will encounter in many situations where you require and are provided with credit.

These terms and conditions provide 14 days for payment to you for normal use of our. credit.
In addition with our standard terms of credit we will provide an additional service at our discretion - this may include an account statement at the end of the month where invoices are unpaid, reminders of payments overdue and warnings on your statement when payments are beyond acceptable credit timeframes.

We understand that when you have a busy life accounts can inadvertently be left - and so our reminder process is designed to assist you. When you make payment in accordance with the terms of credit there are no credit charges or interest charges.

Obviously if we have bad debtors we refer these to our debt collection agents and solicitors. We are entitled under our terms and conditions to recover credit charges and interest once we have overdue debts owed to us - to assist us to recover the cost associated with this. We are also entitled to make recovery at debtors’ expense - in accordance with our standard credit terms and conditions.These are posted here for your convenience. Alternatively you can either phone or email us for a copy which we will email to you.

We reserve the right to withdraw our credit and credit services at any time at our discretion. In these circumstances we will advise you of payment terms in writing.

We may require, in respect of some work we may agree to undertake that we be paid in advance or partially in advance for such services (that a deposit be paid). We will explain this to you if this occurs. It is your choice of course whether to use our services if this occurs. It can occur for instance if we have considerable outlays in respect of the service provision.

8. What Is Your Policy On Client Communication & Privacy

Your personal or business information is private and confidential and we take very seriously our obligation to maintain it's confidentiality.

We have summarised below some of the measures we take to ensure and maintain the confidentiality of your information:

We maintain mail-in and mail-out registers to allow us to track correspondence and enable us to ensure correspondence is sent in a timely fashion and that where correspondence is lost by Australia Post or Couriers we can prove and identify it's last ascendia location to these providers.
We undertake regular coaching and training of our professional and administrative staff to ensure that they understand and implement behaviours that are necessary to protect the privacy and confidentiality of clients.  This extends to not providing contact details of clients, or confirming the fact of a person or entity being a client - unless already authorised by an authorised person such as the client or a person they have authorised.

We require written privacy / information releases to be signed by clients before divulging information to third parties (persons other than our professional and administrative staff).
Correspondence from ascendia may contain confidential and/or privileged information. We use registered and express mail where appropriate to assist in maintaining security. In addition we provide clients the option of picking up and delivering their information personally, we notify them and ensure their information is provided only to them or their authorised representative.
We issue disclaimers on our correspondence, physical and electronic, that makes clear the legal obligation of a mistaken recipient to notify ascendia immediately and destroy or return the information as appropriate. We also include clear explanation that any unauthorised copying, disclosure or distribution of the material that may be received by a mistaken recipient is strictly forbidden and constitutes a breach of the Privacy Act and may result in the unauthorised distributor or copier being fined and / or imprisoned.

Staff have stringent confidentiality provisions in their employment agreements that they must agree to before becoming employees of ascendia. We have in the past enforced these provisions strictly and will continue to do so. Staff are for instance not authorised to divulge information about clients to any other person, including other staff who may not be working on your affairs and may not need to know.

Email and information storage and copying of files is strictly monitored by our IT infrastructure. We track and monitor all email communication and information transfer into and out of the ascendia information technology infrastructure. This facilitates enforcement of our policies designed to protect you. Evidence is thus able to be supplied to enable damages to be obtained and law enforcement achieved. The privacy act contains strict criminal provisions.

Refer to Privacy Policy footer of this page for more information.

9. What is Our Policy On Client Records and Information Management?

We have clear Records & Information Management Policies which you should familiarise yourself with.

Records & Information Management

Most of the records we retain are records we have created which are our property. However we also always have some original client records that we have - that are due for return to clients.

Our policy is to copy and return your records to you as soon as possible. In many cases we will only take a copy and return the originals to you immediately.

At the latest we will return original documentation to you after we have completed a job for you or at a predetermined and agreed time.  For instance where we are providing accounting and tax compliance services it is our normal policy to return substantiation documents relating to your tax affaiss at the end of the job.

Taking Your Records with You If You Leave

We can, if you subsequently leave our firm, provide you with the following, in accordance with the ethical, professional and legal standards:

All original documents that we may have retained and not yet returned
Copies of the latest financial reports, income tax returns and financial and investment reports we have recently provided - in electronic form for your convenience.

Search and review of all our archives to ensure that all original records and reports that may have been prepared for you and not yet provided are in fact provided to you.  We retain archives for 7 years as required.

We do charge a fee for search and retrieval of records - to ensure we can resource this to a professional standard and that all your records are properly provided.

Our Records

For our commercial and quality assurance purposes, in accordance with the professional and ethical standards of the professional associations to which we are affiliated, and in accordance with the law, we retain copies of client records.  These are copies only and are ascendia records.

They represent an audit trail and it is mandatory that we retain them. These records are confidential ascendia records. Because we provide all clients with originals they do not represent any records that you do not already have.

In addition we generate a substantial number and type of records that are integrally representative of our tools, templates and calculation methods and schedules that we have developed or purchased to be able to provide the range and level of services that we provide you.  These records clearly indicate our business processes that we have developed and purchased at considerable expense. Many of these business processes are critical to enabling our business to provide a wide range and high quality of services. They are integral to our intellectual property and are like the farm land of a farmer - inseparable from our firms’ value.

As a consequence we are able to deny access to these types of records at our discretion (other than to regulators). These types of records are strictly confidential ascendia records.

We are also not able to provide these to a client even if asked if a client leaves the firm - we are under legal duty not to release such records - with a range of firm stakeholders including creditors, owners and insurers.

Referral to New Advisers Where Required

If you have left our firm, for instance to relocate to a new geographical area where we currently do not service, you may come across some advisers or accountants who will ask their new clients to obtain confidential advisers records from an adviser that the client has left.

This is especially the case when the new adviser or accountant is not familiar with the area of work, or may not have sufficient professional ability to understand the financial accounts without the prior work papers, or simply may be trying to save themselves time after having taken on a job that is bigger than they initially expected.

Unfortunately we cannot release our confidential records as outlined above. We can of course release your records as outlined above at "taking your records with you". We do not ask for confidential accountants or advisers records ourselves.

If this occurs to you after leaving our firm, if you would like we can often refer you to an alternative operator who will undertake their own preparations and due diligence in taking on and undertaking your work (we have affiliations in other locations and states with reputable advsiers and investment managers).

When starting a new client there are a lot of work papers and background calculations that may be required.  We often have to rebuild this type of information ourselves when taking on new clients. This is in fact a positive process where an investment manager builds their own working papers - it ensures they understand and review your affairs properly rather than relying on the previous advisers work. It is the new advisers cost in taking on a new client.

Ascendia Records Management

Our IT infrastructure is fully firewalled and backed-up regularly.  We employ an IT specialist who has experience working for large financial institutions in the UK and understands our industry and related requirements.

Our offices which are all are maintained in full security alarmed and 24 hour monitored offices.

It is not possble to guarantee that our server or offices will not at some stage be broken into by criminals, If we become aware of such an occurance we will take all reasonable actions as would be expected.

If you have any questions about this please email us at info@ascendia.com.au

Please refer to our Privacy Policy at footer of this page for more information.

Terms & Conditions Investment Managers

  • Financial & Investment Advisory

  • Portfolio Management

We have outlined below a summary of Ascendia Wealth Pty. Ltd. policies and conditions of service. We ask you to familiarise yourself with these and hope this summary is of assistance to you in considering our services.

1. Scope of Service

All financial and investment information and advice is provided specifically and only for the private use of the person or entity to whom it is provided.

This is because individual personal and business requirements and circumstances vary. Accordingly we ask that you maintain the confidentiality of your advice documentation and investment management records so that friends and colleagues do not act on such advice to their potential detriment.

In addition, all our advice is written, with all your questions answered and opportunity for further analysis and queries to be raised by you prior to any action being taken pursuant to advice.  This is because the implications of advice can take some time to fully appreciate, and can involve matters you may not be initially familiar with.  It is also a legal requirement.

Different dominant communication preferences of different clients is addressed through the provision of written documentation, verbal advice and comprehensive diagrammatic meeting presentation(s) of all advice - as required by individual clients.

No action is taken in relation to advice until a client fully understands and authorises action in writing. Variations from advice (client directions) are required in writing to ensure your requirements are fully understood and met and that you maintain total control of the process. Ascendia Wealth Pty Ltd. does not hold funds on trust.

Please refer to the Financial Services Guide for more detail regarding the services we are licenseed to provide.

Our service is provided in accordance with the requirements of the ASIC and FPA professional, legal and ethical requirements.  We are members of the FPA: membership number 035064 and Financial Ombudsman Service: membership number 4970. The firm that provides advice is Ascendia Wealth Pty. Ltd: Corporate Authorised Representative number 251037. Our licensee, which is independently owned by the partners, is Ascendia Pty. Ltd., the AFSL number is 307308. All financial and investment advice is provided by Ascendia Wealth pty. ltd.

2. Continuity Of Our Service To You

It is a general term of our trade that if you supply, allow the supply, continue the supply, or do not remove our ongoing access to your financial records - that this is a request and authorisation to us to provide and continue to provide our services to you, and undertake and continue to uindertake work for you - in accordance with our terms unless you have notified us in writing otherwise.

You can appreciate that with such important matters pertaining investments and your reliance on us - if you want us to stop work - we need to be notified in writing.

3. Please Ensure You Keep Yourself Informed Of Our Terms

A general term of our trade is that you make yourself familiar with our terms and policies, including our Professional Services Engagment Letter(s), and including requesting one of these if you do not have one, by emailing us at at info@ascendiainvestment.com.au 

We have to change / update all of our terms and policies from time to time as a normal part of our business improvement process, as all businesses do.

As a result it is also a general term of our trade that you keep yourself up to date with any changes to our terms and policies that occur from time to time, by:

(a) reference to this web site, and

(b) by requesting updated Professional Services Engagement Letters from us via the abovementioned email address.

4. Ways You Can Access Our Terms

As a courtesy to you, from time to time we may provide you, in hard copy or by email, with the latest version of our Professional Services Engagement Letter (and thus relevant terms).

We have provided on this web page access to:

(a) Our Terms of Trade & Credit (summarised on this page and in the attached link)

(b) Our General Terms of Trade (on this page)

(c) Our Records and Information Management Policy and Terms (on this page)

We have also provided on this web page an explanation of our Professional Engagement Terms and how you can get a Proefssional Services Engagment Letter prepared for you. You can request a copy of a Professional Services Engagement Letter - which contains a number of professional terms of trade - by emailing us at info@ascendiainvestment.com.au

We also provide you with a link to this web site on the footer of all our email correspondence for your convenience and review. You can access this Terms web page from the footer of every web page on this site.

5. Professional Service Engagement Letters

Engagement Documentation

When you engage us to become your wealth manager we have considerable legal responsibilities toward you. 

We have set out our obligations and what you can expect from us clearly in our engagement documents.

There are different documents that are needed depending on what sservice you require. If you want to engage us - please email or telephone us. We will prepare and forward you the appropriate engagement documents - which must be tailored to your situation (and include all relevant personal and private details including ABN's, ACN's full name and date of birth etc.)

Once you have engaged us we have an obligation to provide a level of service in accordance with the various regulatory requirements as well as consistent with the professional standards of the professional associations to which we are affiliated. 

As a result regardless of whether you sign off on the specific Professional Services Engagement Letters we may send you - these engagement letters and their terms also apply. We are not able to provide service on any other terms.

It is a general term of our trade that you take responsibility to familiarise yourself with our Professional Services Engagement Terms and / or Letter(s) that we may send you - in respect of any professional service supplied to you.

You can do this by:

  • Reviewing the Professional Services Engagement Letter we have supplied and forwarded to you already - or if we have not done this,
  • By requesting a Professional Services Engagement Letter be forwarded to you, and by reviewing it.

If you have not received a Professional Services Enagement Letter you should contact us and advise us of this at info@ascendiainvestment.com.au . We will prepare and send you a relevant Professional Services Engagement Letter as applicable accordingly.

If you have any questions about a Professional Services Engagement Letter you have received, you should contact us by email at info@ascendiainvestment.com.au and outline your questions. We will answer any questions including the reasons for any of the terms in the relevant Professional Services Engagement Letter applicable to your services if you would like this.

We may continue to undertake service without your sign off on an updated Professional Services Engagement Letter which we may provide you.

Nevertheless we only provide services in accordance with:

  • Our latest / updated professional task engagement letter (available on request)
  • Terms of Trade and Credit (available in this site
  • Our Records and Information Management Policy and Terms (available on this site
  • The General Terms of Trade outlined on this web page.

Termination Of Our Engagement

We are not obliged to take your business and in some circumstances we may have to decline to assist a prospective client. This is consistent with our professional ethics and regulatory duties.

You are able to terminate our engagement in writing at any time.  A written privacy release from you is also required for us to be able to release client records to your new advisers.

We are also able to terminate the engagement in writing at any time. This is very rare and has only occurred in unusual circumstances, such as failure to pay accounts, behaviour that we regard as extremely rude or aggressive behaviour by clients or of course requests for or undertaking of suspected unethical or illegal behaviour.

6. What Are Your Terms of Payment and Credit?

Professional Fees & Charges

Our fees for all services are based on professional charge out rates that change from time to time. We are not obliged to restate these to you after you have engaged us.  We do provide new engagement each year for your assistance that includes our latest professional rates at this time. Our rates are consistent with those outlined by the professional associations.

Rates applicable also vary depending on the level of work required. Our rates are all published in our engagement letters that you will see when you obtain them from us (by email or telephone contact). Our principals can provide information about expected costs in discussion with you about the work required.

We are able to provide estimates of fees however our charges are based on the time it takes to do a professional job to the standard required by the regulatory environment. We will communicate clearly and quickly with you if and as soon as we become aware that a job is going to take longer than expected.  We will provide you with alternatives where available at that time.

In the past we have received, and from time to time we although less and less due to our no commissions services receive commissions and brokerages relating to our wealth management services. These are fully disclosed and agreed to by our clients in advance where applicable. Please refer to a copy of our latest Financial Services Guide for more information about this.

Standard Payment Terms

Our standard payment terms are payment on delivery of service completion and prior to lodgement of your tax returns.We do not lodge your tax returns unless we have received payment of your account in full.

We accept:

  • Cash
  • Personal Cheques
  • Bank Cheques
  • Visa Card
  • Master Card
  • EFT-POS
  • B-PAY
  • EFT transfer

If you choose not to make payment on delivery of the service our standard terms and conditions of credit apply. By choosing not to make payment at the time of completion you are choosing to apply for credit from us on our terms of credit. We will automatically accept your application unless we advise otherwise within 5 working days.

Terms and Conditions of Credit - Your Alternative to Paying Straight Away

If you do not wish to agree to these terms and conditions of credit simply ensure you make payment at the time the service is provided / at completion of the job.

If you choose not to pay at the time the service is provided we will treat this as a credit application by you - on our standard terms and conditions of credit - alternatively you can pay us at the time we provide the service.  Where we choose to extend our credit to you this serves as our acceptance of your application, in accordance with our terms and conditions of credit.

For all clients, including those who have used our credit, we still require payment of all outstanding invoices prior to the lodgement of tax returns, as this represents the end of our work period for you for that year, and the beginning of another years work. This has been our policy since 2010.

Our clients benefit from our extension of credit until their lodgement date each year. We currently do not charge interest or account fees on our credit accounts.

We are able to charge interest and late charges at our discretion - up to a reasonable limit outlined in our terms of credit details - which are linked to this page as a .pdf file. We use this discretion where acocunts are overdue substantially. We will give you advance warning if we are intending this and you will have the opportunity to pay out your account in this event.

We have summarised these terms below and also provided a full copy of these terms for your information and convenience. These conditions are the same terms and conditions that you will encounter in many situations where you require and are provided with credit.

  • These terms and conditions provide 14 days for payment to you for normal use of Ascendia Wealth Pty. Ltd. credit.
  • In addition with our standard terms of credit we will provide an additional service at our discretion - this may include an account statement at the end of the month where invoices are unpaid, reminders of payments overdue and warnings on your statement when payments are beyond acceptable credit timeframes. 
  • We understand that when you have a busy life accounts can inadvertently be left - and so our reminder process is designed to assist you. When you make payment in accordance with the terms of credit there are no credit charges or interest charges.
  • Obviously if we have bad debtors we refer these to our debt collection agents and solicitors. We are entitled under our terms and conditions to recover credit charges and interest once we have overdue debts owed to us - to assist us to recover the cost associated with this. We are also entitled to make recovery at debtors’ expense - in accordance with our standard credit terms and conditions. These are posted here for your convenience. Alternatively you can either phone or email us for a copy which we will email to you.
  • We reserve the right to withdraw our credit and credit services at any time at our discretion. In these circumstances we will advise you of payment terms in writing.
  • We may require, in respect of some work we may agree to undertake that we be paid in advance or partially in advance for such services (that a deposit be paid). We will explain this to you if this occurs. It is your choice of course whether to use our services if this occurs. It can occur for instance if we have considerable outlays in respect of the service provision.

7. What Is Your Policy On Client Communication & Privacy

Client Communication & Privacy

Your personal or business information is private and confidential and we take very seriously our obligation to maintain it's confidentiality. This is not just an issue of privacy any more but one of substantial financial security due to the increasing incidence and substantial consequences of identity fraud.

We have summarised below some of the measures we take to ensure and maintain the confidentiality of your information:

  • We maintain mail-in and mail-out registers to allow us to track correspondence and enable us to ensure correspondence is sent in a timely fashion and that where correspondence is lost by Australia Post or Couriers we can prove and identify it's last ascendia location to these providers.
  • We undertake regular coaching and training of our professional and administrative staff to ensure that they understand and implement behaviours that are necessary to protect the privacy and confidentiality of clients.  This extends to not providing contact details of clients, or confirming the fact of a person or entity being a client - unless already authorised by an authorised person such as the client or a person they have authorised.
  • We require written privacy / information releases to be signed by clients before divulging information to third parties (persons other than our professional and administrative staff).
  • Correspondence from ascendia may contain confidential and/or privileged information. We use registered and express mail where appropriate to assist in maintaining security. In addition we provide clients the option of picking up and delivering their information personally, we notify them and ensure their information is provided only to them or their authorised representative.
  • We issue disclaimers on our correspondence, physical and electronic, that makes clear the legal obligation of a mistaken recipient to notify ascendia immediately and destroy or return the information as appropriate. We also include clear explanation that any unauthorised copying, disclosure or distribution of the material that may be received by a mistaken recipient is strictly forbidden and constitutes a breach of the Privacy Act and may result in the unauthorised distributor or copier being fined and / or imprisoned.
  • Staff have stringent confidentiality provisions in their employment agreements that they must agree to before becoming employees of ascendia. We have in the past enforced these provisions strictly and will continue to do so. Staff are for instance not authorised to divulge information about clients to any other person, including other staff who may not be working on your affairs and may not need to know.
  • Email and information storage and copying of files is strictly monitored by our IT infrastructure. We track and monitor all email communication and information transfer into and out of the ascendia information technology infrastructure. This facilitates enforcement of our policies designed to protect you. Evidence is thus able to be supplied to enable damages to be obtained and law enforcement achieved. The privacy act contains strict criminal provisions.

8. What is Our Policy On Client Records and Information Management?

We have clear Records & Information Management Policies hich you should familiarise yourself with.

Records & Information Management

Most of the records we retain are records we have created which are our property. However we also always have some original client records that we have - that are due for return to clients.

Our policy is to copy and return your records to you as soon as possible. In many cases we will only take a copy and return the originals to you immediately.

At the latest we will return original documentation to you after we have completed a job for you or at a predetermined and agreed time.  For instance where we are providing wealth management services it is our normal policy to return substantiation documents relating to your investment portfolio at the end of the financial year.

Additional Client Records Back-Up and Portfolio Reporting Services

We offer an online account that enables you to view and retain back-up of your portfolio (up to date daily reporting by us) and / or your business records or personal tax substantiation documentation. 

Taking Your Records with You If You Leave

We can, if you subsequently leave our firm, provide you with the following, in accordance with the ethical, professional and legal standards:

  • All original documents that we may have retained and not yet returned
  • Copies of the latest financial reports, income tax returns and financial and investment reports we have recently provided - in electronic form for your convenience.
  • Search and review of all our archives to ensure that all original records and reports that may have been prepared for you and not yet provided are in fact provided to you.  We retain archives for 7 years as required.

We do charge a fee for search and retrieval of records - to ensure we can resource this to a professional standard and that all your records are properly provided.

Ascendia Wealth Pty. Ltd. Records

For our commercial and quality assurance purposes, in accordance with the professional and ethical standards of the professional associations to which we are affiliated, and in accordance with the law, we retain copies of client records.  These are copies only and are ascendia records.

They represent an audit trail and it is mandatory that we retain them. These records are confidential ascendia records. Because we provide all clients with originals they do not represent any records that you do not already have.

In addition we generate a substantial number and type of records that are integrally representative of our tools, templates and calculation methods and schedules that we have developed or purchased to be able to provide the range and level of services that we provide you.  These records clearly indicate our business processes that we have developed and purchased at considerable expense. Many of these business processes are critical to enabling our business to provide a wide range and high quality of services. They are integral to our intellectual property and are like the farm land of a farmer - inseparable from our firms’ value.

As a consequence we are able to deny access to these types of records at our discretion (other than to regulators). These types of records are strictly confidential ascendia records.

We are also not able to provide these to a client even if asked if a client leaves the firm - we are under legal duty not to release such records - with a range of firm stakeholders including creditors, owners and insurers.

Referral to New Advisers Where Required

If you have left our firm, for instance to relocate to a new geographical area where we currently do not service, you may come across some advisers who will ask their new clients to obtain confidential advisers records from an adviser that the client has left.

This is especially the case when the new adviser is not familiar with the area of work, or may not have sufficient professional ability to understand the financial accounts without the prior work papers, or simply may be trying to save themselves time after having taken on a job that is bigger than they initially expected. 

Unfortunately we cannot release confidential Ascendia Wealth Pty Ltd records as outlined above. We can of course release your records as outlined above at "taking your records with you". We do not ask for confidential accountants records ourselves.

If this occurs to you after leaving our firm, if you would like we can often refer you to an alternative operator who will undertake their own preparations and due diligence in taking on and undertaking your work (we have affiliations in other locations and states with reputable advsiers and investment managers).

When starting a new client there are a lot of work papers and background calculations that may be required.  We often have to rebuild this type of information ourselves when taking on new clients. This is in fact a positive process where an investment manager builds their own working papers - it ensures they understand and review your affairs properly rather than relying on the previous advisers work. It is the new advisers cost in taking on a new client.

Ascendia Records Management

The Ascendia Wealth Pty. Ltd. IT infrastructure is fully firewalled and backed-up regularly.  We employ an IT specialist who has experience working for large financial institutions in the UK and understands our industry and related requirements.

We maintain clear and accurate records in our paper based files in filing rooms in our offices which are all are maintained in full security alarmed and 24 hour monitored offices.

If you have any questions about this please email us at info@ascendiainvestment.com.au .

Terms & Conditions Ascendia Lawyers

In accessing and using this website, you acknowledge that you have read, understood and agree to be bound by the following terms and conditions.

While care has been taken to ensure that information contained in this website is true and correct at the time of publication, changes in circumstances after the time of publication may impact on the accuracy of this information.

We give no warranty or assurance given, and makes no representation as to the accuracy of any information or advice contained, or that it is suitable for your intended use.

We disclaim all responsibility and all liability (including without limitation, liability in negligence) for all expenses, losses, damages and costs you might incur as a result of the information being inaccurate or incomplete in any way, and for any reason.

Each user waives and releases the website and its agents, employees and service providers to the full extent permitted by law from any and all claims relating to the usage of material or information made available through this website.

Subject to any terms implied by law, which cannot be excluded, in no event shall we be liable for any losses or damages, including incidental or consequential damages, resulting from use of the material.

Disclaimer

This website provides links to external internet sites. These external websites are outside our control. It is the responsibility of users to make their own decisions about the accuracy, reliability and correctness of information found. Although care is taken to provide links to suitable material, the nature of the internet prevents the guaranteeing of suitability, completeness or accuracy of any material that this site may be linked to.

We are not endorsing any provider of products or services by facilitating access to information about these providers from its website, nor does it accept responsibility for the quality of goods and services provided by third parties accessed through this site.

Terms & Conditions Ascendia Accountants

We have outlined below a summary of Ascendia Accountants Noosa, Mooloolaba and Brisbane's, policies, terms and conditions of service. We ask you to familiarise yourself with these and hope this summary is of assistance to you in considering our local accountant services.

1. Scope of Service

All accounting and tax advice and services provided by our Brisbane accountants and Sunshine Coast accountants is given specifically and only for the private use of the person or entity to whom it is provided.

This is because individual personal and business requirements and circumstances vary. Accordingly we ask that you maintain the confidentiality of your advice documentation, accounts and reports so that friends and colleagues do not act on such advice or information to their potential detriment.

The scope of our service to you is outlined on this web page, in the engagement letters and the work completed cover letters that we provide you.

2. Professional Advice

In addition, all our professional advice is provided in writing and on letterhead only (and may be attached to an email), we do not provide professional advice in any other form.  Advice is provided for a fee for service at our professional rates after appropriate research and review.

This is because the implications of advice can take some time to fully appreciate, and can involve matters you may not be initially familiar with.  It is also a legal requirement.

Any correspondence by email (without advice on letterhead attached) or verbal communication provided by our staff or associates, is general information only, provided as a rough guide, general information service or basic outline only, it is not professional accounting or tax advice and as such cannot and should not be relied on.

Written advice documentation is from time to time supplemented with verbal explanation, as required by clients. In this instance the written professional advice on letterhead is the actual advice that can be relied on.

No action is taken by us in relation to advice we have provided - until a client fully understands and authorises action required. 

3. Continuity Of Our Service To You

It is a general term of our trade that if you supply, allow the supply, continue the supply, or do not remove our ongoing access - to your financial records - that this is a request and authorisation to us to provide and continue to provide our services to you, and undertake and continue to undertake work for you in accordance with our terms unless you have notified us in writing otherwise.

You can appreciate that with such important matters pertaining to your business and / or tax affairs, and your reliance on us - if you want us to stop work - we need to be notified in writing.

4. Please Ensure You Keep Yourself Informed Of Our Terms

A fundamental and general term of our trade with you is that you make yourself familiar with our terms and policies as outlined on this web site, and with our Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions as oulined in our Professional Services Engagment Letter(s) as supplied to you from time to time and as may be made available from time to time as a generic letter on this web site, or by requesting a personally tailored engagement letter if you do not have one, by emailing us at at info@ascendia.com.au 

We have to change / update all of our terms and policies from time to time as a normal part of our business improvement process, as all businesses do.

As a result it is also a general term of our trade that you keep yourself up to date with any changes to our terms and policies that occur from time to time, by:

(a) reference to this web site, and

(b) by requesting as necessary updated Professional Services Engagement Letters from us via the abovementioned email address.

5. Ways You Can Access Our Terms

As a courtesy to you, from time to time we may provide you, in hard copy or by email, with the most up to date version of our Professional Engagement, Services Provision and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter (and thus relevant terms).

We have also provided, for convenient reference for you, on this web page, with access to a summary of :

(a) Our Terms of Trade & Credit (summarised on this page and in the attached link)

(b) Our General Terms of Trade (summarised on this page)

(c) Our Records and Information Management Policy and Terms (summarised on this page)

You can also call or email us and request a copy of our standard Professional Engagement, Service Provision and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter - which contains a number of professional terms of trade - by emailing us at info@ascendia.com.au

We also provide you on the footer of all our formal email correspondence with you - a link to this web site for your convenience and review. You can also access this web page from the footer of every web page on this site.

You can also click here to download a copy of our standard Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions.

6. Professional Service Engagement Letters

Engagement Documentation

When you engage us to become your accountant and / or tax agent we have considerable legal responsibilities toward you. 

We have set out our obligations and what you can expect from us clearly on this web site and in our engagement documents including our standard Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter.

There may be additional specialised engagment documents needed depending on what service you require. 

If you want to engage us - please email or telephone or complete the relevant form on this web site.

In some instances we will prepare and forward you the appropriate specilaised engagement documents - which must be tailored to your situation (and include all relevant personal and private details including ABN's, ACN's full name and date of birth etc.) before we will agree to start an appointment or engagement by you.

In some other instances we may undertake a job or engagment for you without signed enagement letters from you where for instance:

1. you have requested we undertake the work without a written engagement letter signed up front - and we have agreed to do so

2. you have requested we do the work but you have not requested an engagment in writing for your signature -  and we have been happy to undertake the work on a verbal engagement basis.

In the instance of us agreeing to complete work without a written engagment or appointment by you in the form of our professional engagment letters we agree to undertake the work only in accordance with the policies, term and conditions of our service as outlined in our standard Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter and by requesting our service you agree to these terms. 

Once you have engaged us we have an obligation to provide a level of service in accordance with the various regulatory requirements as well as consistent with the professional standards of the professional associations to which we are affiliated. 

As a result regardless of whether you sign off on the specific Professional Services Engagement Letters we may send you - these engagement letters and their terms also apply. We are not able to provide service on any other terms.

It is a general term of our trade that you take responsibility to familiarise yourself with our Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter that we may send you - in respect of any professional service supplied to you.

You can do this by:

  • Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter we have supplied and forwarded to you already - or if we have not done this,
  • By requesting a Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter be forwarded to you, and by reviewing it.

If you have not received a Professional Services Enagement Letter you could contact us and advise us of this at info@ascendia.com.au . We may prepare and send you a relevant Professional Services Engagement Letter as applicable accordingly.

If you have any questions about a Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter you have received, you should contact us by email at info@ascendia.com.au and outline your questions. We will answer any questions including the reasons for any of the terms in the relevant Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter applicable to your services if you would like this.

We may continue to undertake service without your sign off on an updated Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter which we may provide you.

Nevertheless we only provide services in accordance with:

  • Our latest / updated Professional Engagement, Service and Credit Terms and Conditions Letter (available on request)
  • Our Records and Information Management Policy and Terms (available on this site
  • The General Terms of Trade outlined on this web page.

Termination Of Our Engagement

We are not obliged to take your business and in some circumstances we may have to decline to assist a prospective client. This is consistent with our professional ethics and regulatory duties.

You are able to terminate our engagement in writing at any time.  A written privacy release from you is also required for us to be able to release client records to your new advisers.

We are also able to terminate the engagement in writing at any time. This is very rare and has only occurred in unusual circumstances, such as failure to pay accounts, behaviour that we regard as extremely rude or aggressive behaviour by clients or of course requests for or undertaking of suspected unethical or illegal behaviour.

7. What Are Your Terms of Payment and Credit?

Professional Fees & Charges

Our fees for all services are based on professional charge out rates that change from time to time. We are not obliged to restate these to you after you have engaged us.  Our rates are consistent with those outlined by the professional associations.

Rates applicable also vary depending on the level of work required. Our rates are all published in our engagement letters that you will see when you obtain them from us (by request by email or telephone contact). Our principals can provide information about estimated expected costs in discussion with you about the work required.

We are able to provide estimates of fees however our charges are based on the time it takes to do a professional job to the standard required by the regulatory environment. We will endevour to communicate clearly and as soon as practicable with you if and as soon as we become fully aware that a job is going to take longer than expected and we are able to advise you a new estimate of the time and cost to complete the job.  We will advise you of your alternatives where available at that time.

Standard Payment Terms

Our standard payment terms are payment on delivery of service completion and prior to lodgement of your tax returns.

We do not lodge your tax returns unless we have received payment of your account in full. This is due to the credit terms of our financiers who are the suppliers of the credit you use when you use our credit. 

We accept:

  • Cash
  • Personal Cheques
  • Bank Cheques
  • Visa Card
  • Master Card
  • EFT-POS
  • B-PAY
  • EFT transfer

If you choose not to make payment on delivery of the service our standard terms and conditions of credit apply. By choosing not to make payment at the time of completion you are choosing to apply for credit from us on our terms of credit. We will automatically accept your application unless we advise otherwise within 5 working days.

Terms and Conditions of Credit - Your Alternative to Paying Straight Away

If you do not wish to agree to these terms and conditions of credit simply ensure you make payment at the time the service is provided / at completion of the job.

If you choose not to pay at the time the service is provided we will treat this as a credit application by you - on our standard terms and conditions of credit - alternatively you can pay us at the time we provide the service.  Where we choose to extend our credit to you this serves as our acceptance of your application, in accordance with our terms and conditions of credit.

For all clients, including those who have used our credit, we still require payment of all outstanding invoices prior to the lodgement of tax returns, as this represents the end of our work period for you for that year, and the beginning of another years work. This has been our policy since 2010.

Our clients benefit from our extension of credit until their lodgement date each year. We currently do not charge interest or account fees on our credit accounts.

We are able to charge interest and late charges at our discretion - up to a reasonable limit outlined in our terms of credit details - which are linked to this page as a .pdf file. We use this discretion where acocunts are overdue substantially. We will give you advance warning if we are intending this and you will have the opportunity to pay out your account in this event.

We have summarised these terms below on thi sweb page and also provided a full copy of these terms for your information and convenience as a link to our standard credfit terms on this web page below. These conditions are the same terms and conditions that you will encounter in many situations where you require and are provided with credit.

  • These credit terms and conditions provide 14 days for payment to you for normal use of our. credit.
  • In addition with our standard terms of credit we will provide an additional service at our discretion - this may include an account statement at the end of the month where invoices are unpaid, reminders of payments overdue and warnings on your statement when payments are beyond acceptable credit timeframes. 
  • We understand that when you have a busy life accounts can inadvertently be left - and so our reminder process is designed to assist you. When you make payment in accordance with the terms of credit there are no credit charges or interest charges.
  • Obviously if we have bad debtors we refer these to our debt collection agents and solicitors. We are entitled under our terms and conditions to recover credit charges and interest once we have overdue debts owed to us - to assist us to recover the cost associated with this. We are also entitled to make recovery at debtors’ expense - in accordance with our standard credit terms and conditions. Alternatively you can either phone or email us for a copy which we will email to you.
  • We reserve the right to withdraw our credit and credit services at any time at our discretion. In these circumstances we will advise you of payment terms in writing.
  • We may require, in respect of some work we may agree to undertake that we be paid in advance or partially in advance for such services (that a deposit be paid). We will explain this to you if this occurs. It is your choice of course whether to use our services if this occurs. It can occur for instance if we have considerable outlays in respect of the service provision.

8. What Is Your Policy On Client Communication & Privacy

Client Communication & Privacy

Your personal or business information is private and confidential and we take very seriously our obligation to maintain it's confidentiality. 

We have summarised below some of the measures we take to ensure and maintain the confidentiality of your information:

  • We maintain mail-in and mail-out registers to allow us to track correspondence and enable us to ensure correspondence is sent in a timely fashion and that where correspondence is lost by Australia Post or Couriers we can prove and identify it's last ascendia location to these providers.
  • We undertake regular coaching and training of our professional and administrative staff to ensure that they understand and implement behaviours that are necessary to protect the privacy and confidentiality of clients.  This extends to not providing contact details of clients, or confirming the fact of a person or entity being a client - unless already authorised by an authorised person such as the client or a person they have authorised.
  • We require written privacy / information releases to be signed by clients before divulging information to third parties (persons other than our professional and administrative staff).
  • Correspondence from ascendia may contain confidential and/or privileged information. We use registered and express mail where appropriate to assist in maintaining security. In addition we provide clients the option of picking up and delivering their information personally, we notify them and ensure their information is provided only to them or their authorised representative.
  • We issue disclaimers on our correspondence, physical and electronic, that makes clear the legal obligation of a mistaken recipient to notify ascendia immediately and destroy or return the information as appropriate. We also include clear explanation that any unauthorised copying, disclosure or distribution of the material that may be received by a mistaken recipient is strictly forbidden and constitutes a breach of the Privacy Act and may result in the unauthorised distributor or copier being fined and / or imprisoned.
  • Staff have stringent confidentiality provisions in their employment agreements that they must agree to before becoming employees of ascendia. We have in the past enforced these provisions strictly and will continue to do so. Staff are for instance not authorised to divulge information about clients to any other person, including other staff who may not be working on your affairs and may not need to know.
  • Email and information storage and copying of files is strictly monitored by our IT infrastructure. We track and monitor all email communication and information transfer into and out of the ascendia information technology infrastructure. This facilitates enforcement of our policies designed to protect you. Evidence is thus able to be supplied to enable damages to be obtained and law enforcement achieved. The privacy act contains strict criminal provisions.
  • Refer to Privacy Policy for more information.

9. What is Our Policy On Client Records and Information Management?

We have clear Records & Information Management Policies which you should familiarise yourself with.

Records & Information Management

Most of the records we retain are records we have created which are our property. However we also always have some original client records that we have - that are due for return to clients.

Our policy is to copy and return your records to you as soon as possible. In many cases we will only take a copy and return the originals to you immediately.

At the latest we will return original documentation to you after we have completed a job for you or at a predetermined and agreed time.  For instance where we are providing accounting and tax compliance services it is our normal policy to return substantiation documents relating to your tax affaiss at the end of the job.

Taking Your Records with You If You Leave

We can, if you subsequently leave our firm, provide you with the following, in accordance with the ethical, professional and legal standards:

  • All original documents that we may have retained and not yet returned
  • Copies of the latest financial reports, income tax returns and financial and investment reports we have recently provided - in electronic form for your convenience.
  • Search and review of all our archives to ensure that all original records and reports that may have been prepared for you and not yet provided are in fact provided to you.  We retain archives for 7 years as required.

We do charge a fee for search and retrieval of records - to ensure we can resource this to a professional standard and that all your records are properly provided. 

Our Records

For our commercial and quality assurance purposes, in accordance with the professional and ethical standards of the professional associations to which we are affiliated, and in accordance with the law, we retain copies of client records.  These are copies only and are ascendia records.

They represent an audit trail and it is mandatory that we retain them. These records are confidential ascendia records. Because we provide all clients with originals they do not represent any records that you do not already have.

In addition we generate a substantial number and type of records that are integrally representative of our tools, templates and calculation methods and schedules that we have developed or purchased to be able to provide the range and level of services that we provide you.  These records clearly indicate our business processes that we have developed and purchased at considerable expense. Many of these business processes are critical to enabling our business to provide a wide range and high quality of services. They are integral to our intellectual property and are like the farm land of a farmer - inseparable from our firms’ value.

As a consequence we are able to deny access to these types of records at our discretion (other than to regulators). These types of records are strictly confidential ascendia records.

We are also not able to provide these to a client even if asked if a client leaves the firm - we are under legal duty not to release such records - with a range of firm stakeholders including creditors, owners and insurers.

Referral to New Advisers Where Required

If you have left our firm, for instance to relocate to a new geographical area where we currently do not service, you may come across some advisers or accountants who will ask their new clients to obtain confidential advisers records from an adviser that the client has left.

This is especially the case when the new adviser or accountant is not familiar with the area of work, or may not have sufficient professional ability to understand the financial accounts without the prior work papers, or simply may be trying to save themselves time after having taken on a job that is bigger than they initially expected. 

Unfortunately we cannot release our confidential records as outlined above. We can of course release your records as outlined above at "taking your records with you". We do not ask for confidential accountants or advisers records ourselves.

If this occurs to you after leaving our firm, if you would like we can often refer you to an alternative operator who will undertake their own preparations and due diligence in taking on and undertaking your work (we have affiliations in other locations and states with reputable advsiers and investment managers).

When starting a new client there are a lot of work papers and background calculations that may be required.  We often have to rebuild this type of information ourselves when taking on new clients. This is in fact a positive process where an investment manager builds their own working papers - it ensures they understand and review your affairs properly rather than relying on the previous advisers work. It is the new advisers cost in taking on a new client.

Ascendia Records Management

Our IT infrastructure is fully firewalled and backed-up regularly.  We employ an IT specialist who has experience working for large financial institutions in the UK and understands our industry and related requirements.

Our offices which are all are maintained in full security alarmed and 24 hour monitored offices.

It is not possble to guarantee that our server or offices will not at some stage be broken into by criminals, If we become aware of such an occurance we will take all reasonable actions as would be expected.

If you have any questions about this please email us at info@ascendia.com.au .

Please refer to our Privacy Policy for more information.

We're here when you need us.

To request an appointment with an Accounting, Law or Investment Client Service Manager, please fill out the form or Call: 1300 797 858.

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