Brokers advised on policy summaries after confusion over ICOB rules

Biba has issued advice to brokers on what information needs to be sent to retail clients at the point of renewal, under the ICOB rules, after it became aware of "some confusion".

Biba regulation and compliance manager Steve White said the advice would "provide clarification" on what brokers were required to send under the rules, particularly in relation to policy summaries.

Although the ICOB rules do not require policy summaries to be sent, the advice says that if an insurer provides such a document, "Biba suggests that it may be best practice to send it to the retail customer".

The advice continues: "However, sending a policy summary does not remove the obligation to send the customer a statement of any changes to policy terms and an explanation of the changes."

On status disclosure, Biba suggests that a full status disclosure should be made at the first renewal post 14 January 2005, even though the rules only require amendments to be notified before renewal.

The association also launched its regulation "whistleblower" hotline, in response to members asking whether they could use the association to pass details of firms in breach of FSA

Members will be asked to submit contact details anonymously for the firms, as well as "evidential details" of the breach. Members can fax details to 020 7626 9676.

' Biba is close to finalising its advice to Scottish brokers on the FSA's trust account rules, according to White.

White said the rules concerning Scottish brokers were much more complicated than those for their English and Welsh counterparts, as trust status is not recognised in Scottish law.