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&#39N2 will make it easier to switch networks&#39

Networks claim it will be easier for members to move bet-ween rival firms after N2 under the FSA&#39s new training and competence regime.

IFA networks such as DBS and Whitechurch say they welcome the change after November 30 because it means that a registered individual validated with one network will not have to go through retraining when he joins a new network.

This is a departure from the current training and competence rules forcing networks to test new joiners for competence and ignores experience built up with former networks.

Before N2, DBS made all new members, regardless of experience, submit their first six pension, protection or investment cases to its compliance department to be checked before the IFA was signed off as competent.

After N2, entrants from other networks immediately become what it calls investment advisers but will be labelled as under supervision by a compliance adviser until a development plan based on their experience is completed.

DBS spokeswoman Anna Scarfe says: “Under the current regime, even if an IFA had been in the business 20 years, they had to go through the whole supervision process.”

FSA spokeswoman Louise Buckley says: “The change is to training and competence and means if someone is already validated they may not have to be retrained with their new network. But it does not make it easier to move as people still have to go through the same recruitment process, checking things like financial resource.”

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