On Monday 12th July 2021 the Prime Minister confirmed the plan for “Freedom Day” on Monday 19th July. Subsequently, the Government has revised its guidance for businesses from 19th July.

The Welsh and Scottish Governments have made their equivalent announcements and published their requirements and guidance.

We’ve spent a lot of time examining the documentation from the three nations and conclude that in broad terms, in the short term,  nothing has changed other than some instructions enshrined in law are now becoming guidance.

The shift to ‘guidance’ does not change our duty of care to our clients, families or team, and indeed the practical and codified sanctions for breaches of that duty of care remain in force.

Whilst we’re excited about being able to get out and about and visit our clients from Monday 19th, it is clear the most COVID-Secure Meetings will continue to be virtual (video-conferencing) and telephone meetings, which we will support indefinitely.

However, we recognise that many clients are not able or comfortable using technology, so we’re delighted to confirm we will booking real-world face to face meetings from Monday 19th July 2021.

By starting to have meetings again we recognise the risk of us becoming COVID-vectors and despite our client-facing team being ‘double jabbed’, there is still a real risk we may spread Coronavirus. Therefore, meetings will only be conducted in COVID-Secure environments with COVID-Secure behaviours.

The Westminister Government has announced a provisional plan to remove the need for ‘double jabbed’ individuals to self-isolate from mid-August. We may consider adopting this later in the summer, for now, our approach to your health is the same as our approach to your personal finances; we will not take unnecessary risks.

To help reassure and to manage expectations, we’ve produced the following COVID-Secure Meeting Checklist for meeting in your workplace or home:


  • We will not meet face-to-face within 10 days of you returning to the UK from abroad.
  • We will not meet face-to-face within 10 days of us or you being advised to self-isolate.
  • We will not meet face-to-face whilst you are suffering from any common cold etc.


  • People may experience temporary or permanent vulnerability at different times in their life, particularly when dealing with their personal finances. We reiterate our vulnerable persons policy and invite all clients to have family members or friends attend their meetings with us (subject to that person following our COVID-Secure requirements).
  • Please ensure your NHS COVID-19 app has been functional for two weeks prior to our meeting.
  • Please conduct a rapid lateral flow test. The test kits are available for free from some workplaces, some local chemists or direct from the NHS . Lateral flow tests are easily administered from home and the result is available within 30 minutes. Lateral flow tests are not a reliable indicator of having COVID, but they are a good indicator of being infectious or not.
  • If we are meeting in your workplace or home please ensure that the meeting room is ventilated for at least two hours before the meeting.
  • If you are a “close contact” of an infectious person you should postpone our meeting.


The NHS define close contact as:

  • close face to face contact (under 1 metre) for any length of time – including talking to them, for more than 1 minute
  • being within 1 to 2 metres of each other for more than 15 minutes – including travelling in a small vehicle, workplace etc
  • someone who spends lots of time in your home, for example, family members, cleaners, tradespeople


Where COVID-Secure measures are in place, for example, physical barriers such as plexiglass screens, interactions are less likely to be treated as a “close contact”.

During the meeting

  • We will not shake hands
  • If we are meeting at your workplace or home, please ensure the meeting room remains ventilated throughout.
  • Please wear an appropriate face covering unless exempted
  • For clients with hearing disabilities, we are happy to wear transparent visors.
  • If we need you to use a stylus for a digital signature, we will sterilise it immediately before handing it to you and then immediately upon it’s return.

Following your meeting

  • If within 10 days of your meeting you test positive or become aware that within the 10 days prior to our meeting that you were a close contact of an infected person, please let us know ASAP.
  •  Continue to ventilate the meeting area following our departure.

We do not believe that this checklist is a fixed final policy:

It is clear that the governments of the three nations will continue to develop their response to the pandemic, we’ll continue to reflect upon the emerging rules/guidance/laws and also on our ‘new’ experiences and that of our clients.

We are already aware of exponential growth in the number of clients, professional contacts, friends and family members who are testing COVID positive. It is inevitable that members of our team will have to isolate at short notice. We apologise in advance for the frustration and inconvenience such requirements will cause.

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Investment & Retirement Solutions Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority

Registered in England & Wales (6884783) at Ransom Hall, Ransom Wood, Nottinghamshire, NG21 0HJ

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