A successful investing relationship requires all parties to be informed and ask questions. Your registered firm and registered individual’s job is to provide investment advice that’s suitable for you. By understanding the information you receive and relaying your investment needs and objectives to your firm or individual, you will become a proactive investor and strengthen your relationship.
Check to see if there has been any disciplinary action taken against the registered individual or the registered firm by viewing the Canadian Securities Administrators Disciplined List and the Canadian Securities Administrators Investor Alerts list.
Make sure you receive and understand disclosure information on how your registered firm and your registered individual are compensated, what services you will receive and the products that are available, the costs of your operating account, and whether there are any material conflicts of interests.
When you open an account you will be asked to provide information about yourself. You should relay your investment needs and objectives to your registered firm or registered individual so they can provide suitable advice to you.
Make sure you receive a copy of all forms you sign, and don’t sign documents that you do not understand or that are not fully filled in.
Read any prospectus, fund facts document or any other offering document related to investments before you invest.
Make sure you understand your investments, including the risks, obligations and costs.
Make sure all payments are made to the registered firm, not the registered individual. If you are asked to make a payment to someone else, check with the registered firm first.
Check your trade confirmations to make sure they match what you intended to invest in.
Review your annual charges and compensation report for a summary of what you were charged for the operation of your account last year and any compensation your firm received from third parties based on your investments, such as trailing commissions on mutual funds.
Check your account statements to verify accuracy.
If you have access to an online account, check it regularly.
Make sure the statements you receive are from the registered firm, which could include the name of your registered individual. The statements should not come directly from your registered individual.
If you have any questions, speak to your registered individual. If you still do not understand, contact the registered firm’s branch manager to inquire further.
If you are experiencing issues with your registered individual, discuss the problem with the individual first. You should receive fair consideration and prompt action. If not, speak with the registered firm they work for.