Wyman report on debt advice funding published

Peter Wyman’s report on a review of debt advice funding has been published. The report makes several recommendations, including:

  • face-to-face advice should still be widely available but there should be general and phased shifts by free-to-client providers from face-to-face to phone and then to webchat;
  • free-to-client providers should commit to 20% efficiency savings over the next 2 financial years, to be achieved by technology and collaboration
  • MAS should continue to be funded solely by FCA levy, which should be temporarily increased for the next 2 years
  • those who benefit from Fair Share should pay for it
  • the Government should plan a one-off awareness campaign
  • if  a “breathing space” is introduced, only authorised or exempt advisers should be able to apply for it on behalf of their client
  • MAS should upgrade its Debt Advice Locator tool
  • all relevant codes of conduct for creditors should commit them to drawing free advice and MAS to consumers
  • all debt advice businesses should have a quality assurance process authorised by FCA and reported to FCA, and MAS should develop a process to help smaller advisers to meet their obligations
  • all authorised debt advisers should have a debt advice qualification before they can offer debt advice unassisted and should be subject to CPD requirements
  • there should be a debt advice Tsar.