Call for evidence on the Operation of Insurance Premium Tax

The government is undertaking a call for evidence to understand more about:

  • how the administration and collection of IPT can be modernised, to provide optimal efficiency for both business and HMRC; and,
  • the extent to which there are emerging practices leading to unfair tax outcomes, and how these might be effectively addressed.

One of the possibilities HMRC being considered by HMRC is the possibility of extending the scope of IPT to include broker administration fees, aligning their treatment with commission.

FCA sets out its priorities for 2019/20

The FCA has published its Business Plan for 2019/20, which outlines the key priorities for the coming year. As the preparations to leave the European Union continue, the immediate priority remains supporting an orderly transition post-exit. The Business Plan outlines four ongoing cross-sector priorities:

  • Work on firms’ culture and governance, including extending the Senior Managers and Certification Regime to all firms.
  • Ensuring the fair treatment of firms’ existing customers by monitoring firms’ practices, including the information they give prospective and current customers.
  • Developing the work being done on operational resilience, which will play a vital role in protecting the UK’s financial system.
  • Combating financial crime and improving anti-money laundering practices, by enhancing the use of technology and data, as well as engaging with multiple agencies and government bodies.

 Extension of the Temporary Permission Regime deadline

The FCA has confirmed the deadline for notifications for the temporary permissions regime (TPR) will be extended to the end of 30 October 2019. TPR allows EEA-based firms passporting into the UK to continue new and existing regulated business within the scope of their current permissions in the UK for a limited period, while they seek full FCA authorisation.

Ombudsman’s Annual Review

In 2018/2019 the FOS received 388,392 new complaints including 180,507 about PPI. Consumer credit produced the second highest number of complaints, at 68,758.  There were 42,346 complaints involving general insurance – a significant increase over last year’s figure of 36,703. Complaints about buildings insurance rose by 42% – largely attributable to claims disputes following extreme weather events such as the ‘Beast from the East’. The report also indicated that some insurers hadn’t done enough to treat customers fairly at renewal.

FSCS to help Lamp policyholders

Gibraltar-based Lamp Insurance Company Limited has been placed into liquidation. The firm provided a range of insurance policies to the UK retail and commercial market, including home insurance, GAP insurance, health insurance and after the event insurance. The FSCS has confirmed it will protect UK individuals and business customers with an annual turnover of less than £1m – compensation generally based on 90% of the value of the unexpired premium.

FCA Call for Input on financial advice “a welcome opportunity”

Responding to the FCA’s call for input on its proposed approach to reviewing the Retail Distribution Review (RDR) and the Financial Advice Market Review, Hugh Savill, Director of Regulation at the ABI, said: “Financial advice can help people make the most of their retirement, but at the

moment the market is not working for the majority of consumers. The measures proposed in the Financial Advice Market Review were supposed to lower costs and narrow the advice gap, but this has not materialised in reality. We look forward to engaging comprehensively on this.”