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IPA calls for complaints body with lay majority 5 May 2011

The consultation, which has a deadline that closes tomorrow, was in response to an Office of Fair Trading study that made several recommendations to alter how the profession is regulated.

These included the establishment of an independent complaints body, for which the Insolvency Service set out four suggested models.

The IPA has set out a detailed proposal for a new low-cost decision-making body - the insolvency complaints board (ICB) - as an alternative way of addressing the OFT’s concerns. 

The IPA said the ICB would not be dissimilar to the one perhaps envisaged by the OFT, but a body whose functions are primarily limited to decision making, leaving the complaints handling, investigation and report writing processes in the hands of the recognised professional bodies (RPBs).

The IPA said it seeks to achieve the consistency and transparency that the OFT highlighted as a concern in its report without imposing extra costs on insolvency practitioners.

Paddy Brazzill, president of the IPA, said: “We believe our proposal, coupled with new common guidance on disciplinary sanctions and a new ‘gatekeeper’ role for the Insolvency Service, should enhance transparency and public confidence in the system.

“This system would ensure that complainants are better informed and have more rights to challenge decisions on their complaints, whilst the Insolvency Service role as the oversight regulator should also be enhanced.”

He added: “Perhaps most important of all is that some of these measures can be agreed and taken by the regulators without the need for legislation, potentially speeding up the process of reform.”



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