The Financial Services Authhority (FSA) has released a consumer guide to help raise awareness of the Retail Distribution Review (RDR) and what it means to you.

The document entitled “Changes to the way you get financial advice” highlights what is changing, what the benefits to you are and discusses the differences between independent and restricted financial advice.

From 31 December 2012, if your adviser says they are independent, this will mean they are able to advise on all of the types of products that you could invest in. If not, this means that they will be offering ‘restricted’ advice. Restricted advisers will either
specialise in specific areas, such as pensions or offer limited advice on a smaller range of products.

IFS are committed to remaining independent and will not be restricting your choice.

It is pleasing to see the FSA start to release information like this and begin to inform consumers about the significant changes that are occurring. They highlight the main changes as: clearer charges, clearer services and more professional advice.

From the 31 December 2012 there will be a professional adviser check list and every financial adviser must hold a Statement of Professional Standing (SPS) as evidence they are meeting the standards ~ both advisers, Paul & Gavin, at IFS already have these.

At IFS, we already work in a way that is aligned to these changes and have been doing so for some time now ~ our range of services are defined, we are open and transparent about charges and fees and both Paul and Gavin have attained qualifications that exceed the minimum set by the FSA.

We look forward to similar guides from the FSA to further help cement consumer understanding of these changes. If you have any queries about RDR and how it may effect you then please do get in touch