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Old 05-24-2011, 05:33 PM
actuary21c actuary21c is offline
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Default Professional discipline processes: warning of (imo) significant flaws in UK process

Please see http://www.actuary21c.com/?p=1211 where I warn anyone who is either currently involved (either as Complainant, Respondent, investigator, adjudicator, or in any other capacity) or considering getting involved in the disciplinary process of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries (or of any other professional body) of problems that arose in two cases that I am aware of, so that they can try and avoid similar issues arising in their situation.

My experience relates to the UK actuarial body, but the principles (and points to guard against) may apply to other professional bodies (whether of other countries, or of other professions, such as accountants, lawyers, doctors, dentists).
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a21c is one of the better posters on the AO. That's not saying he's good.

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Old 05-24-2011, 05:49 PM
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So I read the whole thing, but found it a very confusing read. What's your suggestion for future proceedings without disclosing company information that may be confidential?
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Old 05-25-2011, 03:41 AM
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Well, discipline procedures, like any multi step process, are complicated.

What I'm saying is that it is perfectly possible for a disciplinary process to appear fine (fair, thorough etc.) on paper but it only takes a small number of loopholes for things to go wrong.

I've made some suggestions for improving the procedures in my post.

I should add that, having made my post, I may not necessarily respond to comments very fully, or even at all for a while, because, having now alerted members and the public to some deficiencies, it is probably appropriate for me to step back for a while in order to give those involved in trying to move forward from the current situation space and time to reflect.
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Old 05-25-2011, 05:42 AM
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I too found this a bit of a confusing read - I suspect because of the desire not to disclose what's going on.

Why can we not hear the full story? If a client had a dispute with an actuary, and we chose to put pressure on them not to go public with the problem in case it damaged their employers reputation, that would seem to be a breach of the actuaries code.
Are things different when we replace "employer" with "profession" and "client" with "member"? Why?
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Old 05-25-2011, 11:17 AM
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I too found this a bit of a confusing read - I suspect because of the desire not to disclose what's going on.
I suspected that the writer was emotional while writing which can make something difficult to read. Bullets would help.

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Why can we not hear the full story? If a client had a dispute with an actuary, and we chose to put pressure on them not to go public with the problem in case it damaged their employers reputation, that would seem to be a breach of the actuaries code.
An example I can think of: Let's say I sign a non-disclosure agreement so I can evaluate a potential acquisition. I look at the reserves and I think the company is legally insolvent. I think their actuary is intentionally hiding this. Let's say I verbally drop some info to the disciplinary committee, letting them know of a potential problem with the actuary. But I also want to abide by my NDA. Disciplinary committee has no evidence of wrongdoing so what can they really do?
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Old 05-25-2011, 11:23 AM
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OK, mea culpa, I'll do a simplified example later which should illustrate the nub of the problem better whilst still not divulging any more details.
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Old 05-25-2011, 12:43 PM
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An example I can think of: Let's say I sign a non-disclosure agreement so I can evaluate a potential acquisition. I look at the reserves and I think the company is legally insolvent. I think their actuary is intentionally hiding this. Let's say I verbally drop some info to the disciplinary committee, letting them know of a potential problem with the actuary. But I also want to abide by my NDA. Disciplinary committee has no evidence of wrongdoing so what can they really do?
Interesting. In that case, the professional duty to speak up would fall to you. If you refuse to do it on the record, can the disciplinary committee act? I'd have to check the rules - but I'd hope so. There's got to be a process for anonymous whistle-blowing hasn't there?
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Old 05-25-2011, 12:45 PM
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OK, mea culpa, I'll do a simplified example later which should illustrate the nub of the problem better whilst still not divulging any more details.
Thanks!
I suspect there's an interesting discussion to be had here, or at least an important point that needs to be heard, if you could do that it'd be helpful.
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Old 05-25-2011, 01:12 PM
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NDA's can't possibly be enforceable when enforcing them would be so contrary to public policy.
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Old 05-25-2011, 01:18 PM
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NDA's can't possibly be enforceable when enforcing them would be so contrary to public policy.


Clearly, you're not a lawyer.
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