A new professional body to help promote compliance with the FCA’s new Consumer Duty requirements has been launched in London today.
The Consumer Duty Alliance (CDA) will aim to build a “sector-wide alliance” of good practice and a directory of services to support members and the wider market.
The FCA’s new Consumer Duty requirements, requiring firms to provide the best outcome for clients at all times, arrive in July.
Keith Richards, former CEO of the Personal Finance Society, will head the new organisation as its first CEO and will be supported by a number of industry professionals.
Mr Richards also runs the Financial Vulnerability Taskforce (FVT). The FVT will remains an independent brand and board within the CDA group.
Among the people taking a role with the organisation is Nick Cann, former CEO of the Institute of Financial Planning which merged with the CISI in 2015.
Mr Cann will chair the CDA’s Financial Planning Forum, which will play a major role in creating practitioner-relevant ‘good practice’ content, guidance and links in a pre and post FCA Consumer Duty world.
Mr Cann said: “The Consumer Duty Planning Forum is an exciting opportunity not just for a few but for the wider Financial Planning community. After surviving a stroke 10 years ago, and living with aphasia, it is good to be back.”
The CDA is a not-for-profit, community interest company (CIC) and will be run by volunteers on a pro bono basis.
Membership is free and open to individuals and firms who will be required to adopt an independent Code of Professional Standards, as well as the consumer-facing Financial Vulnerability Charter.
The CDA initiative was inspired by a Financial Vulnerability Taskforce (FVT) member survey last year calling for more broader support in relation to the Consumer Duty.
Ian Mckenna, CEO of technology consultancy FTRC, will chair the Alliance’s Technology Forum offering support on the use of fintech.
Keith Richards, CEO of the CDA said: “With less than five months to go before Consumer Duty comes into force, the Alliance is working with established experts to share knowledge, learning, guidance and good practice to enable members to shape their own plans and initiatives.”
The CDA has excluded commercial activities from its remit with initial funding support provided by Legal & General and Howdens Brokers as Foundation Affiliates.
Mr Richards added: “With no competition or commercial conflicts of interest to cause a potential barrier, the CDA is encouraging all financial services organisations, advice firms and individuals to join the Alliance.”
SimplyBiz is one of the early Affiliate Members of the CDA.