CPD, Expected solutions R06 and AF5, pension reforms

Posted Feb 11, 2016

This update covers:

1. CPD highlighted change
2. Information on training and CPD
3. Expected solution packages for April exams for R06 and AF5 - start preparing now
4. Pension Reforms and Industry Views from Panacea Adviser

1. CPD highlighted change
In the following article we cover a recent change to ISAs. This is one of the many changes to the diploma knowledge that adviser's CPD should have picked up to meet the maintaining diploma knowledge requirements. In our Accredited CPD system this is covered in Chapter 7.2 of the investment principles and risk online course.

Help to Buy ISAs seem like a no-brainer!
Help to Buy ISAs were introduced in the March 2015 budget and were available from 1 December 2015 and will be available until 30 November 2019.  Although new savers won’t be able to get one after this date any existing plans can still be saved into. 

These seem like a no-brainer for anyone over 16 who is a first time buyer saving for a deposit on a house.  Basically it’s a Cash ISA for first time buyers where the government gives a bonus of £50 for every £200 that is saved.  There is of course a ceiling on the bonus and that is £3,000 on savings of £12,000.  The minimum amount you have to save to qualify for the bonus is £1,600 which gives a bonus of £400. 

The bonus is given if the saved monies are used to buy a house, the value of which is up to £450,000 in London and £250,000 elsewhere.   The solicitor doing the conveyancing applies online for the bonus using a letter from the ISA provider.  The bonus needs to be claimed by 1 December 2030.

If a couple are saving and both are first time buyers then they can both have a Help to Buy ISA and will be able to get up to £6,000 towards their house deposit.

Although the amount that can be saved is a lot less than ordinary Cash ISAs the bonus being offered is much higher than any interest that could be earned.  Any surplus savings someone wants to make can always be held in a normal savings account which from this April will be tax free up to £1,000 worth of interest for basic rate taxpayers.

It’s a no-brainer because even if the money is not eventually used to buy a home - or the home costs more than the qualifying amounts – the interest made on the savings is still tax free.  You just don’t get the bonus from the government.

2. Information on training and CPD
In addition to our training modules and accredited CPD system we also provide a wealth of information on training and CPD on the following pages:

3. Expected solution packages for April exams for R06 and AF5 - start preparing now
Purchase your expected solution package now and get access to many features to start preparing for the exam in advance of our expected solution being issued 7 days before the exam date.

Our ability to provide detailed analysis in our R06 and AF5 expected solutions is based on the fact that the CII use a similar assessment method for each exam. This allows our panel of experts to identify, based on the information supplied by the CII before the exam, the questions you could most likely expect to face in the exam itself.

Our experts are qualified to at least chartered status and have considerable experience of preparing candidates for these exams.

Our expected solution packages:

  • Help you brush up on your technical knowledge
  • Assist you with understanding the exam techniques required
  • Identify the likely questions that will be asked
  • Help you answer the likely questions in the format the CII will be looking for.

If you use all of the tools provided in our expected solution packages, we can’t guarantee you that you will pass, but we can guarantee you will be well prepared.

See our expected solution packages page here for more details.

4. Pension Reforms and Industry Views from Panacea Adviser
The Government announced at the 2014 Budget proposals that from April 2015 it would allow people aged 55 and above to access to their money purchase pension savings as they wish during retirement, subject to their marginal rate of income tax.

The development of the new reforms has impacted financial services significantly and almost a year on many retirees and advisers are sitting tight, waiting to see how new rules will affect the retirement marketplace before committing to any change to financial plans.

Additionally, in the recent budget the Chancellor launched a Green Paper to look at the pensions system as a whole, which could mean the system will be revolutionised further. 

With the huge amount of changes going on, it is not only a challenging time for the adviser community but could also provide numerous opportunities for developing new business. 

That is why Panacea Adviser are launching the first FREE virtual event for financial advisers and paraplanners in the UK.

Retirement Choices 2016 - a virtual conference
On 25 February 2016 you can log in and visit a number of stands, hear from a number of keynote speakers and watch virtual presentations on issues surrounding pension reforms.

Live text debates will take place after some of the sessions, giving you the chance to put your questions to the experts and speakers to get real-time answers – ideal for people who shy away from putting their hand up and raising a point in front of an audience.

For more information about Retirement Choices 2016 and to register please visit www.retirementchoices2016.com.

To register, simply type in a few details which will go to forming your virtual business card on the day.


Wizard Learning Ltd

Provider of accredited online training and CPD system for financial advisers and financial services professionals.

We are committed to helping you gain higher level qualifications and maintain this knowledge through effective continuous professional development.

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