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Platforms urged to check on adviser charges

Ascentric says platform providers should monitor adviser charges on their platform and question high fees to avoid misselling.

Managing director Hugo Thorman said platform firms should have a duty to monitor charges levied on clients. He said: “I am a definite minority in this but I think by not monitoring adviser charges we could end up with a misselling scandal in the next few years.

“I do not want the FSA to introduce regulation that makes us formally responsible for monitoring adviser charges but I think we should have a duty to make sure every client understands exactly what they are being charged and why.”

But Thorman does not think providers should be responsible for monitoring white-labelled platforms.

Transact head of marketing Malcolm Murray says: “Platform providers should be aware of any exceptional level of remuneration agreed with the
client. We have internal guidelines and if a payment breaches those we query it with the IFA. More often than not, someone has put the decimal place in the wrong spot.”

He says so far there have been no instances of advisers consistently overcharging clients.

He says: “It is difficult to say what action we would take because we have not experienced a situation like that but in the first instance we would talk to the IFA.”

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