I wonder about that soapbox

11 September 2006 Angelo Coppola

A reader called me last week more than a little aggrieved about the way he has been treated by the association to which he belongs and also by the regulator that invoices him for the privilege of being a financial advisor.

It wasn't that he was irked about his association not doing anything and passing the buck to a third party; or the fact that the third party really didn't have jurisdiction over his issue either.

And it wasn't about the fact that the FSB took six months to get back to him, either.

It was really about the fact that the FSB wanted to charge him for their incompetence and lack of efficiency, and to add insult to injury were also going to charge interest on the outstanding amount.

So here is the story. Our reader applied to the FSB to cancel his licence as he had joined a network and was working within their business and under their licence. He had however missed the deadline for cancellation.

Anyway he notifies the FSB department responsible for such affairs in January, at which time he is told that he would still have to pay the licence fee applicable for the full year?

And so the discussions commence and six months later an FSB staffer calls to say that they are willing to cancel his licence but he still has to pay for the six months it took them to get back to him. Sound fair?

If so, then consider that initially the FSB were going to charge this retail broker interest on the outstanding amount? Does that sound fair?

Editor's thoughts:
* According to our reader it's not so much the amount that is at issue, but the principle.
* It makes good business sense and goodwill for the staffer to cancel the fee. Trying to make an extra bob from a client is never good business sense.

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