Bupa says some IFA networks have been asking protection providers to increase their basic premium rates to boost adviser commission payments.
The firm says it has been urged by networks to put up premiums , most recently for critical-illness cover.
Individual protection product and marketing manager Steve Casey says he is concerned this will encourage dual-pricing and that providers agreeing to this are effectively buying themselves on to network panels.
Casey is also worried consumers will end up paying more for the same products from these networks and says they have not attempted to justify why they deserve increased commission.
He says: “We have been asked to increase the basic price and by doing that pay higher commission than we normally do. We said no. It is effectively buying yourself on to their panels.
“If it was because the network was giving exceptional customer service or because they spend more time with their clients, then we might consider it but they give no justification. People know it goes on but nothing is happening to stop it.”
Scottish Provident head of marketing Alison Turner-Holmes says ScotProv has not been approached by any networks or advisers to increase premium rates.
She adds: “In terms of treating customers fairly, I am not sure this is an appropriate approach in the current market climate.”