- Smallbusinessadvice.ie is an unincorporated association of persons, drawn from the business community, who have come together on a voluntary basis to organise the making available of business advice to small businesses free of charge.
- In these Terms of Engagement: the members smallbusinessadvice.ie are collectively referred to as the Association; persons providing advice to businesses under the aegis of the Association are referred to as Advisers; and the owner of the business in relation to which an Adviser gives his or her advice is called the Business Owner.
- In seeking advice from an Adviser, the applicant to the Association confirms: (a) s/he is the Business Owner; or (b) where the Business Owner is a partnership or a company, that s/he is properly authorised by the Business Owner to seek and receive advice from an Adviser and to agree to these Terms of Engagement, in each case on behalf of the Business Owner.
- In consideration of the agreement of an Adviser to provide advice to the Business Owner, the Business Owner agrees, in a legally binding manner with that Adviser, the Association and all persons and organisations supporting its objects from time to time, that these Terms of Engagement govern the relationship between the Business Owner and each of those mentioned above, in connection with the advisory service contemplated by these Terms of Engagement, to the exclusion of all other provisions.
- Advice is provided only by individual Advisers acting personally. In providing advice to the Business Owner, the Adviser is not representing or acting on behalf of any person or organisation of which he may be a member, director or employee (including the Association), and this is so even when advice is provided during the normal hours of employment of the Adviser or at any premises, or using any facilities, of the Adviser’s employer.
- An Adviser will provide advice on matters of business practice and judgement. An Adviser cannot be taken to have experience or expertise in relation to the matters upon which s/he is asked to advise, and any advice given will be based only on the Adviser’s actual experience in business life. No advice is offered by an Adviser on matters of law, accounting standards, taxation or regulatory compliance, and where such matters are referred to by an Adviser, anything offered by the Adviser is for information purposes only and is not a substitute for proper professional advice, which the Business Owner is recommended to take as appropriate.
- An Adviser’s role is only to advise. Responsibility for the governance and direction of the business concerned rests solely with the Business Owner (and its directors, where applicable).
- Neither the Association nor any Adviser is obliged to advise or to continue advising any Business Owner.
- The Business Owner acknowledges: (a) that s/he or it is seeking advice in the course of and for the purposes of a trade, business or profession, and accordingly is not entitled to the benefit of consumer protection law; and (b) that in providing advice the Adviser is volunteering and not acting for gain or in the course of a business. To the fullest extent permitted by law, all representations, warranties, terms and conditions that would otherwise be implied by statute, law or otherwise in respect of or in connection with the services of the Adviser are excluded.
- An Adviser provides advice to the Business Owner free of charge, and so the Business Owner agrees that the Adviser’s only duties and obligations in connection with that advice are (1) to act honestly and (2) not deliberately to do harm to the Business Owner; and the Business Owner further agrees that the Adviser will not have any liability to the Business Owner (whether for breach of contract or statutory duty, or for negligence or any other civil wrong or otherwise) in connection with any advice, or any failure to advise, or otherwise in connection with the relationship or other matters contemplated by these Term of Engagement except for direct loss or damage suffered by the Business Owner arising from the Adviser’s dishonesty or deliberately caused by the Adviser.
- The Business Owner acknowledges that in the circumstances paragraphs 9 and 10 above represent a fair and reasonable apportionment between the Adviser and the Business Owner of the risks associated with the subject matter of these Terms of Engagement, and accepts the exclusions and limits on the Adviser’s duties, obligations and liability described in those paragraphs.
- From time to time, the object of the Association and the work of Advisers may be supported by other persons and organisations (including the initial supporters, Cork Chamber of Commerce, Cork Business Association, Plato and Bord Gáis Éireann). The Business Owner accepts that he will not receive advice from any such persons or organisations, even where advice is provided to him by an Adviser that is a member or employee of any such person or organisation, and that no such person or organisation has any obligation or duty to the Business Owner.
- The Business Owner acknowledges that no Adviser is authorised to modify or supplement these Terms of Engagement, which may be modified and supplemented only by the Association in accordance with its rules and procedures.
- These Terms of Engagement are governed by the laws of Ireland, and the parties submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of Ireland in connection with all disputes, questions and differences arising out of or in connection with these Terms of Engagement or any matter governed by them.
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