Question:I am advising colleagues who arrange a property scheme for landlords. This can range from individuals doing a one-off buy-to-sell, to one client who has 300 properties. The policy is underwritten as a commerical property insurance. Will this be classified as Retail or Commercial with the FSA?

ANSWER: "The question is phrased in terms of whether the policy is a retail or commercial one. This is not the correct way to look at the issue. The real point is identifying whether the ultimate policyholder is retail or consumer. The FSA has, following the consultation, decided not to include small businesses in the definition of retail but finding your way through the new definitions of "customer" involves several further definitions! Each landlord should be examined separately. Individual buy to let customers are good examples of retail customers. Someone with 300 properties would fall to be a commercial customer. Sadly, the cases in-between will all fall into a grey area to one degree or another."

Gay Dixon, managing director Compliance Solutions