The merger between Sofa and the LIA is to go ahead following positive votes from the membership of both organisations.
Extraordinary general meetings for Sofa and the LIA last week saw 87 per cent of LIA votes in favour of the merger and 75.5 per cent of Sofa votes in favour.
The 25,000 members of the combined bodies, believed to represent about 40 per cent of registered UK advisers, will be transferred into the new Personal Finance Society by January 2005.
IFAs are keen to see what the PFS will mean for them but are concerned that the two bodies could see a culture clash as they are brought together.
Pearson Jones director Nick Conyers says: “I want to see what the brave new world of the Personal Finance Society will mean for us. There is potential for a clash of cultures but we are all pulling in the same direction and I hope that the PFS will enable us to be seen as a profession rather than in the tarnished light we are viewed at the moment.”
Sofa managing director Bob Bullivant said: “We are extremely excited that the Personal Finance Society is going ahead. We are absolutely convinced it is the best way forward for both of our organisations, in terms of the standards that it will set for our industry and the voice that it will give us to represent advisers.”