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Providers are stopping us doing business

We decided to remain truly independent and offer a choice to our customers to pay us for our genuine advice through commission or fees.

Although we are a small firm, we are confident that we will service the new regime because our clients have trusted us for the last 21 years and they call into our office often with a smile and doing business – some of them bring a bottle of wine at Christmas.

Our greatest concerns, however, are not compliance, PI cover or competition from banks, building societies, direct sales, multi-tied distribution channels or supermarkets.

Our problems are from providers who require us to provide them with a certain level of business. If we do not meet their business criteria and without taking account of the quality of business we introduce, they deactivate our agency unilaterally. This effectively means they do not accept new business.

How realistically can we provide whole of market advice when providers behave in this manner? When will Aifa wake up to what is going on? What is it doing and why is it not proactive to arrange syndication to stop this systematic driving out of business of true small IFAs?

AC Petrou Principal, Havant Insurance and Financial Services,

Havant, Hampshire


Event horizon

Last week, I looked at the Inland Revenue onslaught on the use of capital redemption bonds which sees corporate-held CRBs taken outside the chargeable-event rules. What will this move mean in practice?

Firm foundations Taking the taskforce to task

The report of the Employer Taskforce on Pensions published in December 2004 resulted in positive comment from the usual pension organisations and bodies representing employers, such as the CBI and British Chamber of Commerce.


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