Financieel forum: bank- en financiewezen issue:6 pages:396-422
On 1 November 2007 MiFID and its implementing legislation have entered into force. A novelty of the new regime is that the application of the elaborated rules of conduct is now tailored to the category in which an investor is classified. Before the investment firm can deliver any services, it has to classify its clients in one of the three categories introduced by the MiFID: retail clients, professional clients and, as a subgroup of this last category, eligible counterparties.
This article in the first place intends to give an in-depth and detailed overview of the new client classification regime: what are the criteria and procedures for clients to be categorised in one or the other category and to which extent and how can a client switch to another category than the one initially classified in? The article further gives an overview of the consequences (amongst other things, the level of investor protection) of the classification of an investor in a particular category. The new regime is finally contrasted with the manner in which in the pre-MiFID Belgian (case-)law differentiation was brought into the vast and heterogeneous group of investors.