AFA has chance to ‘start over’ with LIF, says LICG

An AFA member has announced he will call for an extraordinary general meeting of the AFA board, while the Life Insurance Customer Group (LICG) says this will provide an opportunity for the association to “start over” in the LIF reform process.

AFA member and director of NOW Financial Group, Mark Dunsford, announced yesterday he plans to call for an EGM to convince the AFA board to withdraw its support for the LIF in its current form.

“Many AFA members have expressed their concerns to us that the proposed LIF reforms clearly do not provide any benefits to consumers whatsoever and only serve to boost the profits of insurers at the expense of consumers, advisers and their businesses,” said Mr Dunsford, who is also a key LICG member.

“This shameful situation needs to be called out," he said. "If the AFA withdrew its support from the LIF, [politicians] would have reason to reconsider the legislation and, in particular, be able include all the compelling and factual evidence provided from the good work done by the LICG."

ifa reported in December 2015 that Mr Dunsford had also launched a petition to halt the LIF. 

An LICG spokesperson told ifa the group will support the call for an EGM. 

“We have had serious issues with the AFA and the FPA not supporting advisers in the LIF reform process. We don’t believe there are any consumer benefits,” the spokesperson said.

“What we want to do is to say to the AFA, ‘we know you got bullied into this façade of consensus with the FSC and the FPA, and we want to stand behind you, but you’re not fighting the fight for us’.

“Let’s make this an evidence-based conversation. Take the LIF reforms off the table and start again."

Mr Dunsford will need at least 100 signatures from AFA members to officially call an EGM, according to the spokesperson.

“We don’t have any doubt we’ll get it – we’re getting really close already.

“This meeting will create a transparency that has been missing, so they can’t avoid saying, ‘well, this has been put on the table and these are the reasons why we’re dismissing it’.

“The AFA is saying it is representing its members but it doesn’t feel like that," the spokesperson said. "So we’re wondering who it does represent.”

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