Let us lobby for you. Send us your questions and we will make sure that the FSA answers them

The race is on. Last week's meeting between the Treasury, the Financial Services Authority (FSA) and industry representatives signalled the start of a crucial few months for brokers and, indeed, anyone who works with brokers.

The Treasury has outlined its timetable for developing broker regulation and it is tight. Legislation will be put before Parliament in October. And the Treasury is aiming to have a draft of the legislation ready in July. That's just six months away. The consultation guide won't be ready until March and that is yet another hinderance.

While the tight timetable means there is no time for hanging around, it is no bad thing to try and get a common position sorted out sooner rather than later. Minds will be focused and there is no excuse for putting off crucial meetings. Indeed the most immediate issue is whether the Treasury will back existing voluntary broker regulation until 2004 when the new
regulations will be introduced.

There can be no doubt about the magnitude of the issues. All of your key business functions could be affected, ranging from the way you arrange your accounts and disclosure of commission to new professional indemnity issues such as the quality of advice offered by you and your staff.

The worst-case scenario is that the FSA implements a set of regulations that are as tough as the ones imposed on the life industry. All the signs indicate that this will not happen. But to make sure that the regulations you get are the ones you deserve, you must make your voice heard. Insurance Times is starting a campaign to raise your questions with the FSA. The FSA has welcomed the initiative. Some of the key issues are outlined on page 14.

If you have any comments or question email: andy@instimes.co.uk or write to The Editor, Insurance Times, 30 Cannon Street, London EC4M 6YJ. This is your chance speak up and be heard to make sure the regulations are proportionate to the problem.