15 Aug 2016
It is well documented how claims management companies have plagued the industry in recent years. Many of these have lied, cheated, deceived and generally operated in a base and underhand manner.
The Ministry of Justice unit at Burton on Trent has been unable to deal with the excesses in a sensible manner and when foul behaviour has been determined the response is often the equivalent of a slapped wrist and a bad telling off. Contrast this with the treatment meted out by the FCA should an adviser be deemed guilty of fraud or misrepresentation.
A while back it was decided that authorisation of CMCs would fall under the remit of the FCA and many advisers rubbed their hands at the shock in store for the fraudsters and their brethren the merely opportunistic. No date has been set for the switch from MOJ to FCA and I understand that there is much still to be done in terms of setting parameters and transitional arrangements.
Nonetheless, I have it on good authority that the FCA is minded to grandfather in this clutch of miscreants in a similar way that consumer credit authorisation was managed.
This may well suit the FCA but contrast this with the attitude of their predecessor body when the RDR was being pushed through. Advisers of long-standing were told that failure to take QCF4 examinations would mean that they would lose authorisation and despite pressure from the Treasury Select Committee and various advisers the FSA remained steadfast. The result was a mass culling of older advisers most of whom had a perfect regulatory record without any complaints or suggestions of bad behaviour.
Now we have the prospect of the entire CMC population, which is provably a toxic mix of lying, exaggerating, inventive and downright dishonest creatures, being admitted without so much as a quick scan of their attributes (or lack of).
Surely this cannot be the right way for a financial regulator to operate?
Director at Highclere Financial Services Ltd
Clearly the Mexican Bandit in Blazing Saddles was right, they “don't need no stinking badges”, all they need is an FCA grandfathering accreditation and they are up and running.