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PFS sends out letters signed by former CEO Keith Richards

PFS sends out letters signed by former CEO Keith Richards
Keith Richards

The Personal Finance Society has apologised for sending letters to advisers signed by former chief executive Keith Richards. 

The letter, seen by FTAdviser and dated September 8, was received by an adviser today (October 8) to congratulate him on completing the DipPFS and outlining how his membership will change.

The letter was signed by Richards who announced his departure from the body in April and stepped down from the role on June 30 after eight years. It was sent to 86 people. 

John Bissell, chief operating officer at the Chartered Insurance Institute, has since said he acknowledged that a letter had been sent out incorrectly bearing Keith Richards' name. 

The PFS said the error had been corrected and would be investigated. 

CII concerns

Meanwhile the PFS has been entangled in a feud with its awarding body the Chartered Insurance Institute. 

The CII had voiced plans to de-register the adviser body, which was met with consternation from members. 

In June an adviser called on his peers to write to the CII and voice their concerns about the way it has been led in recent times and its renewed attempt to deregister the PFS.

In the same month, past presidents of the PFS came together to call on advisers to vote against the CII at its annual general meeting. This came about as members were unhappy with what was going on between the CII and PFS, specifically with regards to the re-registration attempts. 

Richards then reassured members about changes at the CII and the future of the PFS in a podcast with FTAdviser. 

Last week, CII chief executive Sian Fisher announced she will step down next year, acknowledging "more needs to be done" to reassure members of the PFS. 

Meanwhile last month, the PFS re-elected Sarah Lord as president for a second term, who promised members they would be consulted on any further moves around the de-registration issue.

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