« November 2021 | Main | January 2022 »

FMA on full licence applications, and more daily news

The FMA has revealed that a total of 210 full FAP licences and 156 full AB licences have been approved so far. Of the 210 FAP licences 67 were for class 1, 136 were for class 2 and 7 were for class 3. John Botica, FMA Director of Market Engagement, has said that over 80% of providers need to gain their full licence before the next September. Botica also noted that the quality of full licence applications has improved.

“According to the latest statistics, the FMA has approved 210 full FAP licences (see table below) since the new licencing regime came into force on March 15, 2021.

Of those licences, 67 were for Class 1 (sole advisers), 136 were for Class 2 (more than one adviser, plus authorised bodies) and 7 Class 3 licences (multiple advisers, authorised bodies and nominated representatives).

This is more than double the 80 full licences approved by the FMA as of September 21, 2021, and there are still 1635 transitional FAP licence holders and 1175 authorised bodies yet to apply for a full licence.

The FMA's director of market engagement John Botica says with more than 80% of providers still to transition to a full licence there is much more work ahead.

For many in the financial advice sector, the next milestone will be preparing to submit a full licence application by the target date of September 30, 2022 (for Class 1 and 2 licences).

Botica says many lessons have been learned in the first nine months of the new regime and he acknowledges the efforts of the industry "...who stepped up to welcome the new era of licensing against some pretty tough odds".

"We want New Zealanders to trust the financial advice sector, we want to promote advisers as true professionals and to encourage more people to engage in their financial futures.

"In our mid-year report, we noted that a few full licence applicants had rushed in at the gate, reading the application guide and then pasting our sample answers into the online application form.

"They did not pass Go and were sent back to the start.

"More recently, we’re pleased to say the quality of most applications has improved as you focus on just telling it like it is, documenting how you run your businesses – and care for your clients – in your own words because you know your business best." Click here to read more

Full licence

In other news

From Insurance Business Mag: Full licensing: A smooth transition takes time

Insurance Business Mag: Insurance business mag Elite Women 2022 nominations

Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

20 Dec 2021 – An exposure draft of Australian legislation titled “Treasury Laws Amendment (Measures for Consultation) Bill 2021: Licensing exemptions for foreign financial service providers” was released for consultation, with submissions closing on 12 Jan 2022. https://treasury.gov.au/consultation/c2021-231877

Cigna extends campaign, and more daily news

Cigna has announced that the Good things come in twos campaign has been extended until the end of January. Cigna has highlighted that they have received positive feedback on the campaign. New customers will be able to get two months free premiums while existing customers will get free premiums when they take out or increase their level of insurance via a financial adviser. Cigna will apply the same offer for applications submitted after 17 December. Advisers will be offered twice the servicing commission for two months for all new business. They will also be offered increases sold while the campaign is running.

“To help you and your customers get off to a great start in 2022 we’re extending our Good things come in twos campaign until 31 January.

The campaign’s had a fantastic response and we’ve had overwhelming positive feedback from you about the impact that two months of free cover has had for your new and existing customers.

We'll be backdating the offer so if you've submitted any business after 17 December please let your customers know that they may be eligible to take up the offer.

Two months free for them

We’re giving your customers free premiums when they take out or increase their level of insurance with the help of an Independent Financial Adviser.

New customers will receive two months of free cover.

Existing customers who increase their level of insurance will receive the first two months of increased cover at no additional cost.

Twice the servicing commission for you

We’re offering twice the servicing commission for two months for all new business and increases sold during the campaign period. This is a continued show of thanks for the significant additional time and effort you’ve put in to supporting your customers and to adapting to new ways of working.

In other news

From Good returns: Cold call changes insured's life

Cigna: Cigna NZ "really excited about the change"

Telehealth services predicted to be essential in 2022, and more daily news

CareHQ clinical director Dr. Reza Jarral has said that virtual services similar to CareHQ are useful in dealing with non-Covid-related GP appointments. CareHQ is a ProCare service offered in partnership with Southern Cross to help patients via online consultations seven days a week. Dr. Jarral notes that telehealth services are becoming common practice and can help offer treatment to people unable to see their regular GP in person. Dr. Jarral describes telehealth services as valuable and predicts that they will become even more essential in 2022.

 "CareHQ clinical director Dr Reza Jarral says telehealth services like CareHQ can step up to fulfil non-Covid-related appointments that might otherwise be pushed back days or even weeks.

 “The ways in which New Zealanders access healthcare have gone through significant changes since Covid-19 first reached our shores last year,” Dr Jarral says.

 “While health officials juggle existing Covid cases, more and more families are self-isolating at home in their bubbles with numbers expected to rise in the coming months."

Dr Jarral says as we learn to live with Covid in the community, there is potential for GP capacity to become stretched as the monitoring needs of housebound Covid patients grows.

 “For many New Zealanders, consulting with a GP via telehealth is no longer an unusual concept.

 “With the traditional face-to-face GP visit not always possible during lockdown periods, a phone or video call with the doctor has been the only option available to many patients.

 “Patients are also seeing the value of telehealth services outside of lockdowns.

"An online consult means they don’t have to leave the comfort of their own home if they’re feeling unwell. It also means they can access the healthcare they need in a timelier way, particularly when geography or doctors’ busy schedules pose barriers to getting seen."

If, as expected, increased pressure does land on general practices, Dr Jarral said telehealth services can step in to provide an excellent option for all New Zealanders to receive a high-quality medical assessment from an experienced GP.

“These services can also work closely with a patient’s regular GP, to deliver continuity of care while supporting grassroots primary care.

Telehealth services have already shown themselves to be a valuable tool for the health sector in 2021. These services are set to become even more essential in 2022, as the country continues to navigate the uncertainty that this pandemic brings.” Click here to read more

In other news

World Braille Day will be on 4 January

Partners Life: Chelsea Tobin presentation

Partners Life: Chelsea Tobin webinar

New Silverdale Southern Cross hospital in the works, and more daily news

Southern Cross Healthcare will begin work on a hospital in Silverdale in six months to meet growing demand. The hospital is set to be completed in 2023 and will be equipped with three operating theatres and aa ward with ten beds. It will be on the second floor of the Silverdale Medical & Surgical building. Southern Cross Healthcare interim CEO Chris White has said that it is the right time for Southern Cross to establish themselves in the Hibiscus Coast and Bays region although the site was purchased eight years ago.

Southern Cross Healthcare has announced that it will soon begin the fit-out of its wholly owned hospital in Silverdale, which will meet growing healthcare demand in Auckland’s burgeoning Hibiscus Coast and Bays area.

Fit-out work on the hospital, which will have three operating theatres and a 10-bed ward, is set to commence in six months and is expected to complete in mid-2023. The facility will also have nine recovery chairs for day surgeries. The surgical specialities will be confirmed at a later date, Southern Cross said.

The hospital is located on the second floor of the Silverdale Medical & Surgical building in Polarity Rise. Several other medical providers are already working out of the purpose-built facility, including general practice, physiotherapy, dental, radiology and a pharmacy.

The Hibiscus Coast and Bays is now one of Auckland's most populous areas, having experienced rapid population growth in recent years, with 16% growth between 2013 and 2018. However, residents must travel further afield to access private surgical care due to the scarcity of facilities.

Southern Cross Healthcare interim chief executive Chris White said the firm purchased the Silverdale site eight years ago after recognising the growing community’s need to access healthcare, especially for its ageing population and many families in the area.

“The time is now right for Southern Cross to activate our presence in the Hibiscus Coast and Bays region,” White said. “We’re pleased that we’ll be able to bring hospital services to market in a relatively short time frame because we’re going into an existing building. We look forward to supporting the local community and increasing access to quality healthcare.” Click here to read more

In other news

AIA: An "outstanding individual" in insurance - meet ANZIIF's Lifetime Achievement award winner

Russell’s latest piece on Good returns: Old school cold calls still make a difference

Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

22 Dec 2021 – Statutes Amendment Bill introduced into Parliament, an omnibus Bill amending many Acts, including amendments to the Privacy Act and the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act. https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/bills-and-laws/bills-proposed-laws/document/BILL_118346/statutes-amendment-bill

Consumer issues: access to advice harmed by increased compliance costs for advisers

Following our recent blog on Australia's financial adviser numbers readers interested in the subject you might want to have a look at the report and the article posted on investmentnews.co.nz: at http://investmentnews.co.nz/investment-news/parliament-calls-for-advice-price-check-more-regulation/ I considered commentary on the link, but I think you cannot do better than simply reading the article. I feel for advisers in Australia. Although the quality of advice review has the right terms of reference, it is incredibly difficult to roll-back regulation with the scope that exists in Australia - there are too many people committed to the choices made over the last few years I worry that little substantial change will be made and it is ordinary consumers that will be the poorer for it. For those that want to dive deeper, here is the link to the report of the FEC: Briefing from the Reserve Bank of New Zealand and the Financial Markets Authority on the outcomes of the Australian Royal Commission into banking - New Zealand Parliament (www.parliament.nz)

Financial Advice NZ appoints new chair, and more daily news

Heather Roy has been appointed as the new Financial Advice NZ chair. Roy will hold this role for the next three years. Financial Advice NZ CEO Katrina Shanks has noted that Roy’s contribution and experience has benefited members and believes it will continue to benefit them in the future.

“Financial Advice New Zealand (Financial Advice NZ), a professional membership organisation for advisers, has chosen Heather Roy as its new chair for three years.

Roy is a professional director who serves on several boards. She has been an independent director on the Financial Advice NZ board for a year, was an ACT member of Parliament from 2002 to 2011, and was the Minister of Consumer Affairs in the John Key Government from 2008 to 2010.

Financial Advice NZ chief executive Katrina Shanks welcomed Roy to her new role, highlighting her significant contribution and depth of knowledge and expertise in governance experience over the past year that “has greatly benefited our organisation and our members.”

“We are looking forward to her continuing that from the chair as we move forward in these changing times,” Shanks continued. “The financial advice sector has, like many others, faced some big hurdles over the past two years, and Heather’s experience will be crucial in navigating the new legislative regime and changing commercial environment and helping increase New Zealanders’ financial health, wealth, and wellbeing.” Click here to read more

In other news

Fidelity Life: advisers can see polices that have been moved over to the Tahi platform via the Tahi tab in Adviser Centre

Fidelity Life: more of Platinum Plus, Platinum Plus Level Term and Mortgage Protector policies will be moved over to Tahi in January

Legal and regulatory update for the life and health insurance sector

17 Dec 2021 – NZ Parliamentary Finance and Expenditure Committee released its final report on the outcomes of the Australian Royal Commission into banking following briefings from the Reserve Bank of New Zealand and the Financial Markets Authority. https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/sc/reports/document/SCR_118301/briefing-from-the-reserve-bank-of-new-zealand-and-the-financial