Client Communications — The Importance of Documenting

Investment advisers that manage assets on a non-discretionary basis i.e., executing a transaction only after a client accepts an investment recommendation) face regulatory and legal risks if communications with clients are not properly documented. Because such authority is contingent on client consent, the failure to obtain consent in writing could lead to claims by clients, down the road, that they never authorized an adviser to proceed with a transaction, particularly if the client is unhappy with the results of the investment. Regulators could also charge an adviser with exceeding the authority granted by a client to an adviser if consent is not properly documented.

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