April 8, 2008
Dear Ms. Morris:
As a member of the FSI, I felt compelled to write to you and express my thoughts regarding the Proposed Amendment to Regulation S-P. First I applaud your efforts and believe that client portability is crucial. At the same time, I also hold client privacy as paramount. I do feel, however, that the Amendment could include a number of enhancements.
In an effort to promote consumer choice, I would urge the SEC to include language that makes the Proposed Amendment’s exception absolute. Departing financial advisors should have the right to avail themselves of the exception and utilize the client’s name, address, telephone number, email and a general description of the accounts and products held to contact the clients and inform them of the advisor’s transfer, provide the client with a choice to follow the advisor, and facilitate account portability without interference.
The Proposed Amendment also fails to address the need for financial advisors to retain client information to respond to regulatory inquiries or to defend themselves againdt client complaints made while at the old firm.
Thirdly, the Amendment should change the departure date language from “separation form employment” to something that reflects the independent contractor nature of the advisory business.
Thank you for your efforts and I hope that these comments are helpful as the SEC finalizes the Amendment.
Donald J. Clarke, CFP®