Along the lines of the letter to the market published by IVASS on October 3, 2018, on February 19, 2019 the Bank of Italy has published the guidelines on Brexit-related information duties to Italian customers by UK banks, payment institutions and e-money institutions, which currently provide services in Italy under freedom of establishment, freedom of services regime or by means of a network of agents. The Bank of Italy reminds the UK-based financial institutions the need to ensure full compliance with contractual obligations and the provisions governing their regulated activities in Italy.
The Bank of Italy has therefore requested the UK-based financial institutions to send to their Italian customers detailed personalized information on the impact of Brexit, with specific focus on (i) the effects on existing contracts also in relation to possible run-off of the existing relationships; (ii) the consequences of any corporate reorganisation (e.g. migration of the business to other companies, branches etc.); (iii) the possibility to resort to alternative dispute resolutions systems; and (iv) the effects on deposit insurance guarantee schemes, where appropriate.
The UK financial institutions operating in Italy are requested to use clear and plain language in the communication to their Italian clients and to avoid to create any unjustified alarm on the effects of Brexit on existing relationships. The communication shall be either in the language originally chosen by the customer in the contract or in the same language of the existing contract . Customers shall also be given contact details for further information and assistance, and up-to-date information about the competent complaints office. Same information has to be published on the UK financial institutions' website, at least in Italian and English.
UK financial institutions shall meet their contractual obligations in full and comply with the relevant law and regulatory measures applicable for the provision of services in Italy, including those related to contract termination, proposals for unilateral contract amendments, and transfer/assignment of contracts.