Issuing MCI securities – Practical learnings 12 months on

From

Last year innovative and landmark reforms were introduced that gave companies limited by guarantee the ability to raise capital by issuing mutual capital instruments ( MCIs) without risking their status as a mutual. Now 12 months on, we share our top 3 tips for any mutual looking to streamline the process. Tip 1: Make sure your

continue reading

History repeats – The risks of inadequate due diligence

From

Exposure to historical non-compliance can be fatal for purchasers but many don’t include it in their due diligence. ASIC is on the warpath and you can be liable even if you weren’t operating the business at the time of the non-compliance. So before you purchase a business that holds an Australian Financial Services Licence or

continue reading

In a bind? Traps in binder agreements

From

Binder agreements are regularly entered into by insurance agents or brokers who are seeking to offer insurance on behalf of the insurer. A party that holds a binder will perform certain functions for and on behalf of the insurer including issuing policies and handling administration including variations, endorsements, cancellations, and claims. Beyond the operational considerations

continue reading

An AFS licensing exemption for product issuers – intermediary authorisation

From

Providing financial products to retail clients in Australia is almost impossible unless you hold an Australian financial services (AFS) licence. The intermediary authorisation exemption is virtually the only way product issuers can avoid licensing provided it’s used correctly. What is an intermediary authorisation? An intermediary authorisation allows an unlicensed product provider to operate by entering

continue reading

3 tips to raise funds efficiently in a tough market

From

To commercialise and grow, your business needs capital. But the ongoing fallout from COVID-19 means this may be easier said than done. For a variety of reasons debt may also not be affordable or attainable. Waiting it out may not be viable for your cashflow, could be detrimental to your strategy or put your first

continue reading

Fairness, vulnerability and Fintechs…

From

Regulators have a laser focus on ‘fairness’ following the numerous scandals involving overcharging, underservicing and poor customer outcomes that were laid bare in the Royal Commission into Banking. For fintechs, this means making sure fairness is embedded at every customer touch point. This is no simple task as fairness is contextual and needs to address

continue reading

How Covid-19 has affected reforms to wealth businesses

From

With the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it’s fair to say that regulators and businesses have shifted their priorities. Timelines for legislative reforms driven by the Hayne Royal Commission and licence applications for wealth businesses have changed. APRA and ASIC licences may be delayed APRA has announced that it will not issue any new insurance or banking licences for

continue reading

More than a synonym – what is a fit and proper person?

From

The ‘fit and proper’ person test previously only applied to credit licensees – but now it applies to AFS licensees as well. The change is bigger than it looks Previously AFS licensees had a lower threshold test that a person be of ‘good fame and character.’ On the face of it, the change may seem

continue reading

Delivering documents electronically

From

With the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic, more businesses are communicating with clients electronically. But what are your options when you need to supply or sign documents? Financial professionals must give their clients certain documents, including: Product Disclosure Statements; Financial Service Guides; Statements of Advice; Correspondence and instructions; and Contracts. These are usually given as hard copies

continue reading

The revised reform timetable for general insurance

From

Regulators have shifted their priorities to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. This means significant reforms and legislative change to general insurance may be delayed. We outline what’s changed and when you need to be ready for reform. Licence applications are delayed APRA will not issue any new insurance or banking licences for at least 6 months. We

continue reading