Two of the nation’s larger financial planner associations, the Investment Funds Institute of Canada (IFIC) and the Canadian Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (CAIFA), are exchanging words concerning the rights of use of some educational material.

A broker who wished to remain anonymous told The Insurance Journal that CAIFA was granted the permission to use educational material developed by IFIC for its certified financial planner (CFP) designation courses only. The source claimed that CAIFA is now using the material for its life licensing qualification program (LLQP) course, which is allegedly outside the limit of the agreement. According to the broker, CAIFA started to sell its course last spring while IFIC will start at the end of September.

Keith Costello, Vice-President at IFIC, was advised by legal counsel not to comment on the issue but to say that, "Yes there is an issue and the legal parties are working on it and hopefully it will be resolved."

Steve Howard, CEO of CAIFA states categorically that CAIFA has the right to use the material. "The facts are simply wrong, and when presented can only be viewed in a slanderous way because they are so clearly wrong." He says that CAIFA has a "letter of agreement in respect to this course that grants to LUAC (Life Underwriters Association of Canada) - and we presume from that its successor by name, CAIFA - a perpetual licence to use the course material."

Mr. Howard emphases to The Insurance Journal that the disagreement is a simple legal matter between the two organizations. "If I were on the phone with IFIC, I would be advising them to be cautious, and I think as a matter of respect, I'm going to give you the advice. I'm looking at a contract that grants to us a perpetual license, and I have to say that any reporting around this, or any misuse of the situation on IFIC's part could be injurious."