Brokerage Reform

The march 29, 2022

From 1 April 2022, membership of an approved professional association will be compulsory for all professionals wishing to register with ORIAS as brokers or as agents for brokers.

The purpose of this reform is twofold. On the one hand, it aims to provide a better framework for telephone canvassing in the insurance sector and, on the other, to enable better regulation of the brokerage business in the banking and insurance sector. This reform is a means of structuring the French brokerage ecosystem with a view to supporting and enhancing the skills of all professionals.

Self-regulation of intermediaries through membership of a professional association

Act no. 2021-402 of 8 April 2021 on the reform of the brokerage industry introduces an obligation for insurance brokers, banking and payment services brokers (COBSP) and their respective agents to join professional associations that will be approved by the Autorité de Contrôle Prudentiel et de Résolution (ACPR).

Professionals already registered with the Organisme pour le registre unique des intermédiaires en assurance, banque et finance (ORIAS) on the date the reform comes into force, and who have not had their registration changed within the year, will have until the renewal of their registration in January 2023 to join one of the approved associations. If they fail to join a professional association, applications for registration or renewal of registration as a broker or agent of brokers will no longer be accepted by ORIAS.

The missions of professional associations

Approved professional associations will be given the task of verifying, in addition to that of ORIAS, the conditions governing access to and practice of the profession with regard to their members (good repute and professional capacity of employees, professional civil liability, financial guarantees, ongoing training) and supporting their members in the exercise of their activity (in particular by providing a mediation service).

Intermediaries will be able to opt for the professional association of their choice, as long as it is approved for their activity (insurance intermediation and/or banking and payment services). It is up to each intermediary concerned to contact the association of their choice with a view to joining.

Tighter controls on cold calling

The new rules apply exclusively to "cold calls", and introduce a number of regulatory obligations on distributors, such as the subscriber's prior and explicit agreement to continue the call; the 24-hour period between receipt of the documents and a new telephone contact (mandatory two-step sale); the form in which the contract is concluded (handwritten or electronic signature); and the recording of telephone calls and their retention for two years.

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Article by : Coris N'DJA

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