Newsletter - 10,000 members and more good news...

Newsletter - 10,000 members and more good news...






31 July 2023 marked the start of Consumer Duty and an opportunity for the whole sector to collectively own Professional Standards and influence the direction of travel going forwards.


Consumer Duty is the first reform to use non-regulatory termonology and one which many of us believed we were committed to before regulation was introduced in 1988.


It’s certainly been a busy time for all of us and, as a Professional Alliance, we're thrilled to have exceeded 10,000 members since launching in March, when we started life with the 4,000 members of the existing Financial Vulnerability Taskforce.


Also, we’ve been delighted by the breadth of reaction to the Alliance’s creation and development, including from other professional sectors, such as accountancy and legal services.


We’re now exploring how the Alliance can reach out to consumers to promote our profession, improve financial awareness and engagement to seek financial information, guidance and advice.


We’ll update you on progress in future months. In the meantime, we would like to draw your attention to these recent developments: 

  • Consumer Duty Champions’ Forum – Chair and first event
    We recently announced Michael Lawrence, Principal Consultant at Bovill, as the chair of the Consumer Duty Champions’ Forum. He brings 16 years’ experience working at the FCA, most recently as a Technical Specialist in Consumer Investments supervision, and the first Forum will be Tuesday 19 September.
  • New FVT Good Practice Guide – Supporting bereaved clients
    This is the latest in the Financial Vulnerability Taskforce (FVT) series of Good Practice Guides. The first guide looked at divorce and was very well received and we’ve now published this guide focusing on bereavement. It contains over 30 practical ideas on how to support clients before, at and after bereavement.

More details on these initiatives below. Also look out for the free Consumer Duty self-assessment tool from Altus Consulting, it’s designed to help firms benchmark their performance and demonstrate progress over time.


Please help the Alliance to keep growing by encouraging all colleagues to join, the more members the Alliance represents attract the larger the influence we can have collectively - and it's free to become a member!


Very best wishes,


Keith Richards, Chief Executive Officer, Consumer Duty Alliance.

Cutting through the Consumer Duty noise; what really matters?

In this first Forum, hosted by Bovill, Michael Lawrence and Chris Jones (Proposition Director at Dynamic Planner) will discuss some of the Duty’s thorniest issues and provide insightful guidance on how to cut through the noise and focus on the things that really matter.


The Forum is open to Consumer Duty Champions, Compliance Directors and other Alliance members with an interest in, or responsibility for, Consumer Duty implementation. If that’s not you, please forward this email to the appropriate person and encourage them to join the Alliance.


Learn more and register for the webinar.

Supporting bereaved clients - FVT good practice guide

Bereavement is one of the negative life events identified by the FCA as a driver of vulnerability.

It can occur at any age and often impacts a client’s ability to engage in conversations, make decisions and can make them more vulnerable to financial fraud.


Firms offering clients the right information, support and guidance at the right time and in a way that’s accessible and manageable can be invaluable.


This new guide includes over 30 practical ideas to help clients, and links to almost 100 organisations offering specialist support.


Watch the introductory video or get the guide.

Consumer Duty and the thematic review: The impact on retirement income advice

What should firms consider as part of the Consumer Duty, and its close relative, the thematic review of retirement income advice?


In this 45-minute webinar, Tom Carroll of Legal & General Retail Annuities and Tony Miles MBA, DipPFS, Secretariat of the Consumer Duty Alliance discuss the following points and more:

  • Responsibilities of financial advisers and planners under Consumer Duty and the thematic review.
  • The future critical milestones.
  • Tips on adapting business practices to comply with Consumer Duty requirements.
  • Segmenting your target market, creating fair value frameworks, and identifying vulnerable customers.

Watch the webinar.

Consumer Duty self-assessment 

This free tool from Altus Consulting is designed to help firms benchmark their progress on meeting Consumer Duty requirements, assess the maturity of their capability and obtain guidance on good practice.


There are 52 multiple-choice questions across five sections, including the four outcomes. Completing the assessment only takes around 15 minutes if you have all the information required.


Results are presented as a score out of 100 with a RAG-rated dashboard showing breakdowns for each section, recommendations based on FCA guidance and a comparison against the tool’s average/highest/lowest scores for the industry.

The results are stored so firms can complete the assessment again and again and monitor their progress over time.


Start the assessment.

New report: Economic abuse is no longer ‘hidden’ in plain sight 


A new report by Surviving Economic Abuse charity reveals that every 20 minutes a victim-survivor of economic abuse reports to the police.


Recognising best practice on responding to economic abuse within the financial services sector, the charity is calling on government to consider what role the sector could also play in supporting criminal prosecutions of controlling or coercive behaviour.


Get more information and download the report.


Please email us or contact one of the directors below:


Keith Richards

Chief Executive Officer


Robin Melley



Tony Miles


© 2023 The Consumer Duty Alliance.