The IFS School of Finance has called on financial advisers to consider gaining a qualification in Treating Customers Fairly to ensure they meet the Financial Services Authority’s expectations.
The suggestion comes as the FSA imposed a substantial fine on a firm of financial advisers for failing to treat their customers fairly.
An IFA network in Bristol were today fined £42,000 for complaints handling failings over an 18-month period.
The firm failed to treat its customers fairly because it was not handling complaints in good time.
In addition, it did not monitor its staff sufficiently or keep appropriate training and competence records.
Margaret Cole, director of enforcement at the FSA, says: “All firms should take regulation and their regulatory responsibilities seriously.
“ We have been very clear that firms are accountable for ensuring this is done and that appropriate systems are both implemented and maintained.”
Mark Roberts, head of financial regulation at the IFS School of Finance, says: “Organisations need to implement TCF strategies that will satisfy both regulatory and customer expectations and gaining rigorous and respected qualifications such as the Certificate in Regulated Customer Care can help achieve this.”