Airmic estimates 50% of risk managers failed to hit FSA deadline

Around 50% of Britain's risk managers have not met the FSA's deadline for regulatory applications.

Airmic director general David Gamble confirmed that feedback from members indicated a 50/50 split between those who had put in their regulatory applications to the FSA and those who had not. The deadline for applications so that the FSA can guarantee processing in time for 14 January 2005 - the day the regulations come into force - was 13 July.

Airmic has been fighting the FSA and Treasury over statutory regulation of its members ever since it became apparent that the Insurance Mediation Directive (IMD) - the EU rules that will regulate brokers - also apply to risk managers because they buy insurance by way of business.

One risk manager who did not want to be named said that he sent in an application last week and received an acknowledgment early this week. "Better safe than sorry. I've spent well over a grand putting this together so far, I suppose it's like a six-month insurance policy against the Treasury exempting us," he said.

Gamble said a number of other risk managers had decided that they did not purchase insurance by way of business and that they had, therefore, not sent in applications. "It is very much up to each company to make the appropriate decision for themselves," he said.

The FSA said that risk managers should not worry if they had not yet sent in applications. "There is some flexibility. If risk mangers send in their applications they will not be thrown back in their faces," said an FSA insider.

Airmic has sent the Treasury the results of its legal counsel, bidding that risk managers be exempt from the Directive. Gamble said that he hoped to hear by the end of the week. He added: "The Treasury does give exemptions, but not many."

Meanwhile, fresh fears have been sparked among local authority risk managers that they will not be exempt.

Local authority risk mangers association (Alarm) chair Carolyn Halpin said that there were situations where local authority risk managers were buying insurance on the open market for organisations like fire brigades or public-private partnerships. She said that was causing confusion.