The Insurance Council of BC and Continuing Education

Insurance Licensees should know of Policy ICN 17 - 005 - Failure to comply with the requirement for new licensees to complete the council rules course. Licensees may recall that a new rule required mandatory continuing education program for all licensees. The Insurance Council of British Columbia is taking steps to actively identify licensees who have not completed their continuing education program. Of the 5,000 new licensees who are required to complete the council rules course, the council identified almost 10 percent (404) new licensees who failed to comply. Of these, several were found to have made a material misstatement to council in suggesting with their registration filings that they took that course.

The council took a sweeping decision to issue a $500 fine and requirements to complete the council rules course within 90 days to those 404 licensees who failed to complete the course. These decisions, while seeming to impose another burden on licensees as part of their business, is consistent with other regulated professions, including lawyers, accountants, securities dealers, investment advisors, mutual fund dealers who must undertake similar continuing education requirements. This notice makes it clear that the Insurance Council of BC views this requirement as being a serious one and is taking steps to enforce it.

Taking continuing education for your profession is not only good for clients and for professional fulfillment, it is now a professional obligation and should be treated as such. It is not just a business expense that could be put into the discretionary spending column.