Personal Touch to hike fees from October

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Personal Touch Financial Services is to hike fees from October in response to rising regulatory and professional indemnity costs.

The network wrote to members this week to explain that costs would increase ahead of the year end, with firms paying an extra £4 for regulatory bills – which includes FCA and FSCS costs – as well as a further £114 for each investments and pensions adviser they employ.

PTFS will also charge an additional £150 for each adviser authorised for investments, pensions and mortgages to pay for rising regulatory fees.

Each adviser working on mortgages business will incur a further £36 fee.

Costs for professional indemnity cover will also rise by £15 per firm, in addition to a further £8 per investments and pensions adviser, and £12 for those individuals authorised for investments, pensions and mortgages.

PTFS says it will continue to subsidise the cost of PI cover by around £500,000 in 2015/16.

In a letter to members, PTFS sales and marketing director David Carrington says: “We have already paid these levies and the increased FCA fees in full.

“Whilst we would normally apply changes to regulatory recharges in our year end fee review, in view of the scale of increases and to minimise the monthly impact on all our firms, we are writing to inform you the changes to regulatory recharges, will be implemented from 1 October 2015.

“Please note that for firms with three and six months’ notice periods the implementation dates will be either 1 December 2015 or 1 February 2016.”

In November last year PTFS announced a new fee structure, introduced in February, based on quality of business. It says 80 per cent of its members are paying reduced fees as a result of the change.

The FCA said in March that advisers’ fees would increase by 10.2 per cent in 2015/16 to account for higher staff and technology costs at the regulator.

The FSCS’ final levy for 2015/16, meanwhile, has been set at £319m, with firms in the life and pensions sector hit with a £100m bill to cover compensation costs linked to Sipp claims.

Advisers who don’t hold client money will pay £74.9m in 2015/16, up from £68m in 2014/15.