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Insurers under pressure from IFAs

Life companies have been put on notice by non-aligned advisers, with a social media campaign urging insurers to pledge their support in light of the Trowbridge recommendations.

Out of concern that, if implemented, recommendations made in the Trowbridge Report will negatively impact the non-aligned risk advice market, Medibroker principal Aaron Zelman – founder of the Australian Risk Advisers LinkedIn page – has launched a new page entitled “We support insurers who support IFAs”.

The LinkedIn page has already attracted more than 80 members, several of which have suggested a boycott of insurers that do not explicitly support the non-aligned market.

Mr Zelman told ifa the introduction of a 20 per cent level commission structure and an initial advice payment of $1,200 will make many advice businesses that are not tied to banks or insurers unviable, and therefore operators of these businesses need to be vocal in response.

“I see a great risk to the future of IFA risk specialists and that is probably my greatest concern with Trowbridge, that the advisers of 2020, 2025 and 2030 will potentially be agents rather than risk professionals who source the best of all products,” Mr Zelman said.

“That’s my greatest concern and I am hopeful that if IFAs pass the message to institutions clearly enough that the negotiation process may result in something that is sustainable to the IFA space which I think is crucial to the consumers more than anyone else.”

Staff members of insurers AIA Australia, TAL and ClearView – including some senior executives – have joined the group, as have some salaried advisers.

However, Mr Zelman said he would like to see more support from major institutions including the banks and AMP.

The establishment of the group follows ifa’s publication of the FSC submission to the Trowbridge Report, which called for a move to a level commission regime.