Garry Heath and Mike Owen are entering the IFA services arena again this autumn with the launch of s...
Garry Heath and Mike Owen are entering the IFA services arena again this autumn with the launch of specialist support for dealing with complex life risk cases.
Former chief executive of the IFA Association, Garry Heath and his managing director colleague at IFA Portfolio, Mike Owen, have created a service called Special Risks Bureau (SRB) which should improve and speed up the processing of applications for impaired lives applications as well as those from clients with hazardous occupations and pursuits.
An in-house medical underwriter will help to package the policy information before it is passed to SRB's panel of product providers.
Launch plans are currently set for September, and already have the backing of well-known protection IFA John Joseph.
"This is something the industry has needed for a long time - I know how long my administration staff spend on this type of project and the thought that there is one company that does it all and probably better than me, creates confidence that I wont be looking back to see who I have missed," he says.
"I will certainty be a customer. This is an important concept, which will remove a lot of difficulties and possibly compliance issues from IFA's lives. I think it should be and will be heavily used," adds Joseph.
IFAs and intermediaries using the system can expect to receive at least 65% of the commission per application.
Technological breakthrough and faster processing times have been key reasons for the growth online protection and medical application processing over the last couple of years, but problems with complex cases tend to make it virtually impossible to process an application quicker than within six months.
SRB has been designed specifically to tackle the myriad of protection policies which do not fit the standard application process, points out Heath, because they contain much more data than can be pushed through an electronic system.
"The current multiple application process is hugely wasteful and inefficient. We believe that the industry is wasting upwards of £60m annually in medical fees and administration on cases that never go on risk," says Heath.
"A number of providers have invested heavily in systems to process standard vanilla cases in a matter of minutes. It cannot be right for non-standard cases to take upwards of six months to be processed."
Special Risks Bureau will be part of the Impartial Group, which was created by Heath and Owen to provide a range of support services, training and documents aimed at IFAs.
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