UK: New Registration Requirement in Dodd-Frank Legislation May Affect Advisors to State and Local Governments as Well as Persons Who Solicit Public Pension Funds

Last Updated: 20 September 2010
Article by Jane A. Kanter, Edward L. Pittman and Michael L. Sherman

The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act ("Dodd-Frank Act"),1 created a new registration requirement under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 ("Exchange Act") for persons who fall within the definition of a "municipal advisor." Those who provide "municipal advisory services" (as described more fully below) to or on behalf of a "municipal entity" including, for example, state and local governments as well as public pension plans, will need to examine whether the new registration requirements apply to their activities.

Each person who falls within the definition of a "municipal advisor" must register with the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") by October 1, 2010. On September 1, 2010, the SEC adopted an interim final temporary rule, Rule 15Ba2-6T ("Temporary Rule"), setting forth the requirements and means for registration, as well as related Form MA-T, a registration form to be used by municipal advisors for such purpose.2

Despite the rapidly approaching deadline, many questions remain to be answered by the SEC regarding the scope of activities that would cause a person be considered to be a municipal advisor, as well as exemptions from the registration requirement. This DechertOnPoint describes the scope of the Temporary Rule, the issues raised by the new municipal advisor registration requirement and the process for registration.

Overview

Section 15B of the Exchange Act provided for creation of the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board ("MSRB") and requires registration of municipal dealers that participate in offerings of municipal securities. In the wake of scandals involving, among other things, the bankruptcy of various municipal entities due to unsuitable investments, the MSRB endorsed legislation to require the registration of previously unregulated persons that provide advice to municipal issuers relating to the offering of bonds or the investment of bond proceeds.3 As adopted, however, the provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act may have far broader application. 4 In particular, the Dodd-Frank Act includes amendments to Section 15B that require persons who fall within the new definition of a "municipal advisor" to register with the SEC,5 including, in some cases (as discussed below): investment advisers registered under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 ("Advisers Act"); brokers, dealers or municipal securities dealers registered under the Exchange Act; and commodity trading advisors registered under the Commodity Exchange Act.

Expansive Definition of "Municipal Entity"

The "municipal advisor" registration requirements in Form MA-T apply to persons who provide "municipal advisory services" to "municipal entities." In addition to various state and local governments and associated political subdivisions, agencies, instrumentalities and other issuers of municipal securities, the term "municipal entity" includes "any plan, program, or pool . . . sponsored or established by [a] State, political subdivision, or municipal corporate instrumentality or any agency authority or instrumentality thereof."6 According to a recent advisory issued by the MSRB, the term "municipal entity" encompasses public pension funds, 529 plans, local government investment pools and other state and local governmental entities or funds.7

Who Must Register?

Definition of "Municipal Advisor"

The definition of a "municipal advisor" essentially covers two types of entities: First, it includes any "person (who is not a municipal entity or an employee of a municipal entity) that . . . provides advice to or on behalf of a municipal entity or obligated person with respect to municipal financial products or the issuance of municipal securities, including advice with respect to the structure, timing, terms, and other similar matters concerning such financial products or issues."8 Second, it includes any person "who undertakes a solicitation of a municipal entity" on behalf of investment advisers, broker-dealers and others.9 Specifically included within the definition of "municipal advisor" are "financial advisors, guaranteed investment contract brokers, third-party marketers, placement agents, solicitors, finders and swap advisers" that provide the services described above.10

Persons That Provide Services to a Municipal Entity

The first portion of the definition of "municipal advisor" includes persons that: (i) advise municipal entities or obligated persons on the offering of traditional municipal products; (ii) advise municipal entities or obligated persons on the investment of proceeds from securities offerings; (iii) offer non-securities products (including swaps and guaranteed investment products) to municipal entities; (iv) recommend investment options and brokerage for municipal proceeds held in escrow; or (v) prepare feasibility studies, tax and revenue projections or similar products in connection with offerings or potential offerings of municipal securities.

The broad language in the definitions of "municipal advisor," "municipal entity" and other related terms means that those engaged in a wide spectrum of activities related to municipal financial products (such as municipal derivatives, guaranteed investment contracts and "investment strategies")11 or municipal issuances, in service to state and local governments, 529 plans, and local government investment pools, may be subject to the new registration requirement.

Solicitors, Placement Agents, and Third-Party Marketers

The second portion of the definition of municipal advisor focuses on those who "solicit" municipal entities, including public pension funds, on behalf of broker-dealers and investment advisers, among others.12 Thus, independent finders and solicitors that market municipal advisory products or services to municipal entities will be required to register as municipal advisors.13 For example, unregistered third-party finders, solicitors, placement agents or others who introduce investment advisers to public pension funds or market advisory products or services to municipal entities (and the registered advisers employing them) will need to consider the impact of the Temporary Rule's registration requirements, as well as various Advisers Act rules, on these activities.14

Exclusions from the Definition of "Municipal Advisor" As suggested above, the Dodd-Frank Act includes several exclusions from the definition of municipal advisor for regulated entities and professionals who, in the course of their business or profession, service municipal entities or obligated persons, including:

  • a broker, dealer or municipal securities dealer serving as an "underwriter" as defined in the Securities Act of 1933 ("Securities Act");
  • a registered investment adviser and its associated persons, to the extent such service constitutes "investment advice" for purposes of the Advisers Act;15
  • a registered commodity trading advisor and its associated persons, to the extent such service constitutes "advice related to swaps";
  • attorneys, to the extent such service constitutes "legal advice or . . . services that are of a traditional legal nature"; and
  • engineers, to the extent such service constitutes "engineering advice".

Application to Registered Investment Advisers and Others

Although the exclusion for registered investment advisers and their associated persons arguably is premised on their registration status as investment advisers, rather than the activities they engage in, the Adopting Release states that registered investment advisers are excluded from the definition of municipal advisors only as to "services [that] are investment advice for purposes of the Investment Advisers Act." Consequently, a registered investment adviser or an affiliate "or an associated person of a registered investment adviser must register with the SEC as a municipal advisor if the adviser or associated person of an adviser provides any municipal advisory services other than investment advice within the meaning of the Investment Advisers Act."16 Form MA-T, the Temporary Rule, and the Exchange Act do not define the term "municipal advisory services,"17 nor does the Adopting Release provide any significant guidance as to what constitutes municipal advisory services, beyond those items implicitly included in the definition of municipal advisor.18 However, Form MA-T requires each municipal advisor to identify which of the following municipal advisory services it provides:

  • Advice concerning the issuance of municipal securities;
  • Advice concerning the investment of the proceeds of municipal securities;
  • Advice concerning guaranteed investment contracts;
  • Recommendation and/or brokerage of municipal escrow investments;
  • Advice concerning the use of municipal derivatives (e.g., swaps);
  • Solicitation of business from a municipal entity or obligated person for an unaffiliated person or firm (e.g., third-party marketers, placement agents, solicitors and finders);
  • Preparation of feasibility studies, tax or revenue projections, or similar products in connection with offerings or potential offerings of municipal securities; and
  • Other (specify): ___________

Based on this list, it would appear that registered investment advisers, or their associated persons or affiliates, that provide advice to municipal entities concerning the issuance of municipal securities, brokerage of municipal escrow investments, certain placement services, feasibility studies, tax or revenue projections or similar products,19 could be required to register as municipal advisors since these types of services are likely to be considered to be outside the scope of "investment advice" for purposes of the Advisers Act.20

A number of questions remain regarding the registration and regulation of municipal advisors, particularly those who are already registered with the SEC or other regulators in other capacities, including an investment adviser registered under Advisers Act, a commodity trading advisor registered under the Commodity Exchange Act, or a broker, dealer or municipal securities dealer serving as an "underwriter" as defined in the Securities Act. Currently, it appears that a "municipal advisor" (i) that is not already registered or regulated in any of the capacities noted above or (ii) whose municipal advisory activities are outside the scope of its current registration or regulation by federal regulators, will need to complete its Form MA-T prior to October 1, 2010, in order to continue to provide municipal advisory services to municipal entities. Moreover, in contrast to the Advisers Act, neither the relevant provisions of the Dodd-Frank Act nor the Temporary Rule provides an exception for banks or accountants (each of which has traditionally been excepted from the definition of an "investment adviser" and, therefore, can provide certain advisory services without registering as an investment adviser under the Advisers Act). It is unclear how the Temporary Rule and any substantive regulation will apply when such persons provide municipal advisory services.

Registration Process and Timing

As noted above, any municipal advisor that fails to register by October 1, 2010, will no longer be able to provide municipal advisory services to a municipal entity or obligated person. To facilitate registration by municipal advisors in advance of the October 1 deadline, the SEC has provided a web-based platform for such purpose.21 In order to register, a municipal advisor must first obtain a username and password ("Credentials") through a portal on the SEC's website.22 Once the municipal advisor has obtained its Credentials, it may complete, submit and later amend or withdraw its Form MA-T through a platform maintained on the SEC's website.23 Both the credentialing portal and the registration platform are currently open and operational.

Form MA-T requires a municipal advisor to provide certain basic identifying information (including the municipal advisor's name, address, SEC File Number and CRD24, and a contact person),25 the types of municipal advisory services provided26 and the disciplinary history of the municipal advisor and its associated persons.27 Form MA-T is considered to be a "report" for purposes of the Exchange Act and also constitutes the municipal advisor's consent to service of process. Therefore, the Form MA-T must be executed by an appropriate officer, general partner or similarly situated person of the municipal advisor.28

Although Form MA-T itself is fairly basic, given the rapidly approaching registration deadline, the SEC has recommended that "municipal advisors . . . allow ample time to . . . obtain access credentials and submit the Form MA-T."29 Once the Form MA-T is filed with the SEC by a municipal advisor, the municipal advisor's registration will be effective until the earlier of: (i) the subsequent approval of such municipal advisor's registration pursuant to a final rule adopted by the SEC; (ii) the SEC's rescission of such registration; or (iii) the expiration of the Temporary Rule on December 31, 2011.

Conclusion

The provisions of the Temporary Rule adopted by the SEC are intended to comply with timeframes established by the Dodd-Frank Act. No rules have been adopted by either the SEC or MSRB setting compliance requirements for those entities or persons that must register as municipal advisors. Nor has the shortened time period provided by the legislation allowed either the SEC or the industry to consider the implications of the registration requirements or to address potential problems with the Temporary Rule.

Footnotes

1 Public Law No. 111-203.

2 Temporary Registration of Municipal Advisors, Rel. No. 34-62824 (September 1, 2010) ("Adopting Release"), available at http://www.sec.gov/rules/interim/2010/34- 62824.pdf (page cites herein are to the .pdf version). The SEC website includes a page (http://www.sec.gov/info/municipal/form_mat. htm) through which a municipal advisor can access: (i) Form MA-T's instructions and glossary; (ii) a paper version of Form MA-T for reference; (iii) the SEC's portal through which municipal advisors may obtain registration credentials (i.e., a username and password); (iv) the registration platform through which the Form MA-T can be completed, submitted and amended; and (v) the Adopting Release.

3 See, e.g., Statement of MSRB Chair Ronald A. Stack on Transparency and Regulation in the Municipal Securities Market, before Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs United States Senate (March 26, 2009).

4 Specifically, Section 975 of the Dodd-Frank Act amends Section 15B of the Exchange Act, effective October 1, 2010, to state that, among other things, "[i]t shall be unlawful for a municipal advisor to provide advice to or on behalf of a municipal entity or obligated person with respect to municipal financial products or the issuance of municipal securities, or to undertake a solicitation of a municipal entity or obligated person, unless the municipal advisor is registered in accordance with [Section 15B of the Exchange Act.]" In addition, Dodd-Frank Act creates, as a matter of law, a fiduciary relationship between a municipal advisor and its clients. See Section 15B(c) of the Exchange Act.

5 Municipal advisors will not have to become members of the Financial Industry National Regulatory Authority ("FINRA"), but will need to comply with new rules that will be adopted by the MSRB and also will be subject to examination by the SEC.

6 Section 15B(e)(8) of the Exchange Act.

7 On its website, the MSRB states that the definition of a "municipal advisor" encompasses: firms and individuals that are paid to communicate with municipal entities on behalf of brokerdealers, banks, other municipal advisors or investment advisers to secure certain types of investment banking, financial advisory or investment advisory work with municipal entities, such as public pension funds, 529 plans, local government investment pools and other state and local governmental entities or funds. MSRB Market Topics, Municipal Advisors, available at http://www.msrb.org/Market-Topics/Municipal- Advisors.aspx.

8 Section 15B(e)(4)(A)(i) of the Exchange Act. An "obligated person" is "any person, including an issuer of municipal securities, who is either generally or through an enterprise, fund, or account of such person, committed by contract or other arrangement to support the payment of all or part of the obligations on the municipal securities to be sold in an offering of municipal securities." Section 15B(e)(10) of the Exchange Act.

9 Section 15B(e)(4)(A)(ii) of the Exchange Act. The definition of "municipal entity" included in Glossary to Form MA-T is substantially identical to that in the Exchange Act.

10 Section 15B(e)(4)(B) of the Exchange Act.

11 The term "investment strategies" is defined in Section 15B(e)(3) of the Exchange Act to "include[] plans or programs for the investment of proceeds of municipal securities that are not municipal derivatives, guaranteed investment contracts, and the recommendation of brokerage of municipal escrow investments" (emphasis added).

12 Section 15B(e)(4)(A)(ii) of the Exchange Act. Section 15B(e)(9) includes within the concept of a "solicitation" circumstances where a person is compensated, directly or indirectly, in connection with efforts to obtain business from or to retain the business of a municipal entity or obligated person.

13 Section 15B(e)(9) of the Exchange Act applies only where the solicitation is "on behalf of a broker, dealer, municipal securities dealer, municipal advisor or investment adviser . . . that does not control, is not controlled by or is not under common control with the person undertaking such solicitation." As discussed below, certain exceptions are provided for registered entities (and their associated persons).

14 Solicitations on behalf of registered investment advisers are subject to Rule 206(4)-3 under the Advisers Act ("Cash Solicitation Rule"). Additionally Rule 206(4)-5 under the Advisers Act ("Pay-to-Play Rule") governs certain political contributions by investment advisers, and those acting on their behalf, when the investment adviser seeks business from state or local government entities. Although the Pay-to-Play Rule, as proposed, would have included an outright ban on the use of third-party solicitors and placement agents to solicit government entities, the SEC ultimately determined to allow third-party solicitors and placement agents to solicit on behalf of a registered adviser, provided that the solicitor or placement agent is a "regulated person" (i.e., registered investment advisers or broker-dealers that are members of a registered national securities association, provided that the rules of such national securities association with respect to pay to play are "substantially equivalent or more stringent . . . than . . . [and] consistent with [the Pay-to-Play Rule].") Rule 206(4)-5(a)(2)(i) under the Advisers Act. This limitation becomes effective on September 13, 2011. Thus, the ability to use a registered municipal advisor (that is not also a registered investment adviser or a FINRA-member firm) to solicit clients that are covered by the Pay-to-Play Rule will depend on whether the SEC amends the Pay-to-Play Rule by September 13, 2011, to include municipal advisors within the definition of "regulated person." See July 2010 DechertOnPoint "SEC Adopts "Pay-to-Play Rule for Investment Advisers," available at http://www.dechert.com/library/FS-13_%2007-10-SEC_Adopts_Pay-to-Play_Rules.pdf.

15 Section 15B(e)(4)(C) of the Exchange Act states that the term municipal advisor "does not include . . . any investment adviser registered under the [Advisers Act], or persons associated with such investment advisers who are providing investment advice." As written, this would appear to exclude any registered investment adviser regardless of the capacity in which it is acting, while excluding associated persons of a registered investment adviser only where such persons are providing investment advice for purposes of the Advisers Act. However, as discussed below, the SEC appears to have taken a contrary view.

16 Adopting Release, supra n. 2, at 9 (emphasis added). In addition, the requirement in Item 1.E. of Form MA-T for the provision of a registered investment adviser's Advisers Act registration number appears to support the view that registered investment advisers do not enjoy a blanket exemption from registration as municipal advisors simply because they are registered under the Advisers Act.

17 As discussed below, Item 2 of Form MA-T includes a nonexhaustive list of potential services, as well as an opportunity to describe "other" services that are provided to municipal entities by the municipal advisor. The SEC stated in the Adopting Release that (i) activities 1 to 6 were derived from the definition of municipal advisor in the Dodd-Frank Act and (ii) the activities in 7 were included because these types of services are sometimes provided by financial advisors to municipal entities. The SEC noted that the inclusion of an "other" category (as well as certain defined services) is intended to "assist the Commission in understanding the scope of activities in which a municipal advisor engages [and] to better understand the activities of municipal advisors." Adopting Release, supra n. 2, at 14.

18 That is, "advice with respect to the structure, timing, terms and other similar matters concerning" municipal financial products or municipal securities.

19 As noted above, the preparation of feasibility studies, tax or revenue projections or similar products was not based on the Exchange Act definition of municipal advisor. See supra n. 17.

20 While not addressed by the SEC, it would appear reasonable that a dual registrant (i.e., one registered as both a broker-dealer and an investment adviser) could provide investment advisory (for purposes of the Advisers Act) and underwriting services without being required to register as a municipal advisor.

21 The Adopting Release focuses considerable attention on timing concerns, noting that "absent such means to register, municipal advisors would likely have to cease providing all municipal advisory services, which may have a significant adverse impact on their businesses and on municipal entities." Adopting Release, supra n. 2, at 27.

22 Municipal advisors may access the portal directly by clicking on this link or by copying this text into the address bar of any web browser: https://tts.sec.gov/eaua-request-ent/do/requestAccount?applicationId=689. In order to obtain Credentials, the SEC requires municipal advisors to provide certain basic information (e.g., name, address, employer ID number, EDGAR CIK) and supply a username and password.

23 Municipal advisors may access the platform directly by clicking on this link or by copying this text into the address bar of any web browser: https://tts.sec.gov/matr/web/sec/jsp/ExternalLoginFormRealm.jsp.

24 For example, if the municipal advisor seeking to be registered is also a registered investment adviser or registered broker, dealer or municipal securities dealer.

25 Item 1 of Form MA-T. Item 1 must be amended promptly if the information therein becomes inaccurate in any way.

26 Item 2 of Form MA-T.

27 Item 3 of Form MA-T. Item 3 must be amended promptly if the information therein becomes in accurate in any way.

28 Item 4 of Form MA-T.

29 Adopting Release, supra n. 2, at 25.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Authors
 
In association with
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Tools
Print
Font Size:
Translation
Channels
Mondaq on Twitter
 
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
 
Email Address
Company Name
Password
Confirm Password
Position
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Accounting
 Anti-trust
 Commercial
 Compliance
 Consumer
 Criminal
 Employment
 Energy
 Environment
 Family
 Finance
 Government
 Healthcare
 Immigration
 Insolvency
 Insurance
 International
 IP
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Litigation
 Media & IT
 Privacy
 Real Estate
 Strategy
 Tax
 Technology
 Transport
 Wealth Mgt
Regions
Africa
Asia
Asia Pacific
Australasia
Canada
Caribbean
Europe
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
U.K.
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of www.mondaq.com

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about Mondaq.com’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.

Disclaimer

Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.

Registration

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to unsubscribe@mondaq.com with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.

Cookies

A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.

Links

This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.

Mail-A-Friend

If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.

Security

This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to webmaster@mondaq.com.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to EditorialAdvisor@mondaq.com.

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at enquiries@mondaq.com.

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at problems@mondaq.com and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.