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&#39Life office leadership living in the past&#39

The life insurance industry&#39s standard-raising board chairman John Cox says corporate leadership in the industry lags behind other sectors by a decade as it considers extending its scheme to cover service standards to IFAs.

The scheme is also considering expanding its scope to cover banks to take account of a probable enhanced role in distribution.

Pensions Protection Investment Accreditation Board chief executive John Cox, speaking to Money Marketing, compared the life industry with car manufacturers, which, he says, 10 years ago were prepared to sell unreliable products.

Cox says the body is considering including the standard of service given to IFAs in life offices&#39 Raising Standards criteria. He accepts the industry scheme could be scaled down depending on Sandler and other reviews.

Cox says: “The standards of corporate leadership in the life companies compare with those of some other industries 10 years ago. The life companies have a lot of catching up to do to match other consumer-oriented sectors.”

Scottish Life head of communications Alasdair Buchanan says: “The chief executives that I have met would bend over backwards to stop their businesses being dragged through the dirt.”

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