Another battle of words has broken out between the two rival broker bodies over plans for a register of brokers to rival the proposed new single insurance regulator.

Andrew Paddick, the director general of the Institute of Insurance Brokers (IIB), has slammed his opposite number at the British Insurance Brokers' Association (Biba), Mike Williams, over a letter sent to Biba members.

Williams warned that the IIB's call for brokers to sign up to be Institute Registered Insurance Brokers, could be subject to a legal challenge. Paddick warned that the comments were “untrue, purposefully damaging and probably defamatory”, and threatened legal action in retaliation. “We are shocked that a person in the position held by Mr Williams should make any such statement, before actually obtaining the legal advice he says he is seeking,” Paddick said.

Williams said Biba would consider legal action if the IIB's plans impacted on Biba members. “Mr Paddick is very good at generating hot air and column inches. It adds to the fun but it doesn't add anything to the sum of human enlightenment,” he said.