Opinion  

Advisers should not have to bail out the few

In response to the rise in the FSCS levy, in my opinion, it is quite simple – unregulated activity is unregulated, so the “advisers” involved are by definition outside the regulated advice space.

That being the case, any levy the regulator chooses to put in place to deal with potential or actual costs of claims against those “advisers” must only be paid for by those who chose to involve clients in the wild west of unregulated products.

Not a day goes by it seems without the newspapers reporting on yet another celebrity who has lost money in some “investment” scheme that has gone wrong. Invariably the facts behind the story are vague but usually centre around get-rich-quick tax planning strategies. Whatever happened to the fundamental truth of ‘if it looks or sounds too good to be true it probably is?’ Even for those people who are not A-listers, the fact remains that caveat emptor applies, or has the UK legal system forgotten this?

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I have used the word “adviser” as a very loose term in my comments. Sadly, when applied to unregulated activity it does a massive disservice to those firms who run professional, regulated and sound businesses and continue to provide excellent financial advice to their clients and take full responsibility for this.

It is high time that those people at the forefront of representing IFA professional businesses get on the front foot and present a cogent and clear business case to the FCA and put an end to this open chequebook mentality that all advisers have to share the costs for all advice. It must not be allowed to continue unchecked.

Nick McBreen

IFA,

Worldwide Financial Planning,

Truro, Cornwall