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ICAS calls for changes to FCA regulation

Consumer credit authorisation regime changes have been called for by ICAS in response to the consultation from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

The FCA are currently reviewing how they can make the biggest difference in making financial markets work well, with their consultation; ‘Our Future Mission’. The regulator wants to improve guidelines through explaining how objectives are interpreted and how business plan priorities are chosen.

David Menzies, ICAS Director of Insolvency said: “The FCA needs to consider consumer responsibility and vulnerability, their role is important in encouraging change and innovation in the industries they regulate.”

ICAS responded to the consultation by highlighting two areas where change is required; the insolvency exclusion in consumer credit regulation and the scope of entity-based regulation.

The insolvency exclusion allows an IP to conduct the regulated activities of debt adjusting, debt counselling, debt administration and debt collecting when formally appointed as an Insolvency Practitioner. The issue will result in IPs being ‘dual or triple-regulated’, with unintended consequences a possibility.

Secondly, the FCA “should re-consider” the entity-based approach to financial services and consumer credit regulation. This is because a professional firm requiring FCA authorisation for one regulated activity is currently unable to use their professional membership body’s DPB regime for incidental activities in another regulated activity.

ICAS stated that they wish to “ensure the FCA mission is clear” and that they prioritise protecting consumers, the integrity of UK markets and enhancing competition. The full ICAS response can be accessed here.

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