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Cascade of change is causing concern

Serious concerns are being voiced about the difficulty of implementing depolarisation at the same time as multiple other changes which are rapidly approaching.

A debate on depolarisation at Money Marketing Live at G-Mex in Manchester last week heard Bankhall group sales director Shaun Godfrey point out that depolarisation is coinciding with the most significant changes that the industry has ever seen.

Godfrey said depolarisation could prove to be a lot for the industry to deal with coupled as it is with the insurance mediation directive which comes in January and requires advisers to have £1m in professional indemnity insurance, the introduction of simplified products, mortgage regulation which kicks off at the end of October and general insurance regulation from January.

Tenet director Geoffrey Clarkson said he expects there to be a six-month transfer period from mid-January where the industry chooses whether or not it wants to make changes to business models but acknowledged the difficulties that the almost simultaneous enforcement of the IMD would bring.

But Godfrey believes that the industry has to make an effort to embrace the changes that depolarisation and Sandler will bring, rather than rejecting them.

He said: “We are dying on our feet as an industry due to the lack of new entrants. The changes on the horizon are not a bad thing and could be a good thing as they give us the opportunity to reassess the way that we run our businesses.”

Clarkson said: “I expect to see the final rules around depolarisation in November and for it to be implemented in early 2005 but the timing is going to be difficult with the IMD coming in mid-January.”


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