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Web comments for the letters page

Online comments on the Ex Honister article “IFA anger over James Hay ‘change your adviser’ letter”

I really don’t see what else James Hay were meant to do. It is absolutely right that they should present this now adviserless client with the options available to him, and getting angry with them is both petulant and pointless.
Scott Miller
Is not the underlying problem here – yet again- the FSA? Should there be systems in place to cope with what is becoming an all too common event?
Otherwise, they know that an adviser will be left without means of earning a living (surely some sort of “human right”?) and a client without an adviser.
It has been asked before, but how can someone be “fit and proper” on Tuesday at 11.59pm, do nothing wrong and change nothing yet on Wednesday at 0.01am he/she is no longer “fit and proper”? If the FSA fixed this, there would be no problem.
Chris F
Speaking as an ex-Sage Honister AR caught up in all this, I would like to say that I have seen one of the letters from one of the companies mentioned here and they are worded purely to cause panic with the client and seem to encourage the client to act in haste and appoint a new adviser.
It’s very simple when you deal with a quality firm like Transact, who wrote to inform the client about
de-authorisation and simply added that any queries should be directed to ‘your adviser’ – simple and what is known as “treating advisers fairly” – or do we not qualify for this?
R H Taylor
Two of my peers have separately agreed that, due to the behaviour of certain providers during this difficult period (one writing to all clients of all Honister ARs enclosing a 6-page list of the firms and individuals no longer “fit and proper” to conduct business) those providers will no longer benefit from any new business once the firms are re-authorised.
Whether it has achieved the statutory objective is moot; this is heavy-handed behaviour and needlessly creates obstacles between good advisers and their clients at this already challenging time.
George W Jensen
Online comments relating
to the article: Sun Life Financial to axe future trail commission
Frankly, I think they have done the right thing by advisers. Surely there cannot be much trail from their very tired old products? They have been honest about their unwillingness to pay past 2012. I imagine that many firms will find their commission payments in January to be a little on the light and late side and providers will be having to explain or apologise. More to come? I did like the “death, so we’re parting” clause. What a shame we cannot introduce this to our Terms of Business /long stop yet …
Dominic Thomas
Presumably, Sun Life will apply the saving by reducing the clients’ policy charges? Otherwise they cannot be seen to be treating customers fairly.
Peter Fisher
Peter Fisher, spot on. If charges to customers are reduced accordingly, perfectly OK. If not, then it’s a botched job and the clients are being treated badly.
Peter Hicks
We had so few clients involved, it was definitely an appropriate course of action for all concerned as the administration costs for all parties of allocating to a particular client’s advice account exceeded the value of doing so for the clients. Better for Sun Life, for us as advisers and for the clients, too, in my case. I look forward to my firm’s massive cheque for £90.
Can I suggest some other companies for which this would be a good move for all parties concerned?
Even better, what about all firms being required to give advisory firms the option in 2013 of doing this for any or all of the clients on their agencies? I can see pros and cons of this approach, but compared to “consolidator” IFA firms, this actually looks like it could be fairer to a lot of parties, especially advisers who intend retiring as at January 1, 2013.
Phil Castle

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