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630 IFA firms miss the FSA&#39s fees deadline

Over 600 IFA firms, including some of the industry&#39s biggest companies, have failed to pay all their FSA fees on time and risk enforcement action.

The deadline for the payment of a combination of Financial Services Compensation Scheme, FOS and FSA fees passed last week on September 9, with 16 per cent of firms invoiced not paying,representing 630 out of a total of 3,821 firms although some have paid part of their fees.

FSA managing director David Kenmir says he is disappointed and surprised at the failure of some very big IFA firms not to pay their fees.

The FSA will now notify these firms that they are liable for a surcharge of £250 and interest payments of base rate plus 5 per cent.

Kenmir admits that the FSA&#39s handling of the situation, which has seen IFAs reeling under increases of up to 2,000 per cent in their fees, has not been perfect, with many IFAs unaware of the approaching increases and unable to budget.

He hopes to provide advi-sers with much clearer information next year and says a consultation paper in January will hopefully reveal the anticipated cost per registered individual of fees for the coming year, enabling IFAs to budget for possible increases.

Although IFAs yet to pay will not be offered the option of instalment payments this year, Kenmir says the cons-ultation paper will look at instalments next year.

He reiterated his willingness to speak to the ABI and Pass about the limits placed on the product provider subsidy and provide information about what has happened as a result of the cap and what could happen in the future.

He says: “We appreciate that we need to do better in communicating likely changes to the fees and we do appreciate the efforts most IFAs have made to pay the costs in full.”

Aifa spokeswoman Tracey Mullins says: “If instalment payments were introduced it would be a huge step forward.”

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