“Have you tried turning it off and on again?” – A review of the decision in ASIC V Ri Ad

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On 5 May 2021, the Federal Court handed down a landmark decision in Australian Securities and Investments Commission v RI Advice Group Pty Ltd (2022) FCA 496 by declaring that RI Advice Group Pty Ltd (RI Advice) had breached its obligation to: provide financial services efficiently, honestly, and fairly, and have in place adequate risk

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Who watches The Watchmen? We do – a review of the ASIC Enforcement Update

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On 28 March 2022 the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) released Report 722 ‘ASIC Enforcement Update July to December 2021’ (Report 722). In this article, we: review the key data points in Report 722 and compare them against the previous update – ‘ASIC Enforcement Update January to June 2021’ (Report 699) provide you with

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Financial Services and Credit Panel – with great power comes great responsibility

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ASIC has released a consultation paper[1] on what matters should be heard by the Financial Services and Credit Panel and how it will assess an adviser as a fit and proper person. A new Sheriff in town… Last year, the government passed legislation to give the Financial Services and Credit Panel (FSCP) its own legislative functions and

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Who Would Be An AFSL? – The Court’s Review Of Section 961L

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On 2 August 2021, the Federal Court handed down its decision in the matter of Australian Securities and Investments Commission v RI Advice Group Pty Ltd (No 2) (2021) FCA 877. Background The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) commenced proceedings against RI Advice Group Pty Ltd (RI Advice) for an alleged failure to comply with section

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A winter change is coming – fee consent and lack of independence

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Courtesy of the latest round of Royal Commission legislation[1], from 1 July 2021 financial advice firms need to update their Financial Services Guides (FSGs), Ongoing Service Agreements and Financial Disclosure Statements (FDSs). The key changes are: FSGs must include written disclosure that you are not “independent, impartial or unbiased” (assuming you are not independent within the meaning of

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Breach reporting is about to become more onerous

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A new breach reporting regime will commence on 1 October 2021 and it will be more onerous on licensees than ever before. One of the most notable changes is that credit licensees are now required to report significant breaches for the first time. In this blog, we outline the other key changes that you need

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History repeats – The risks of inadequate due diligence

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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

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How Covid-19 has affected reforms to wealth businesses

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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

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FASEA Code of Ethics – what you need to know

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We’re well into 2020 and the FASEA Code of Ethics (the Code) is currently in force. What should advisers and licensees be doing to make sure they comply with the Code? The Code came into effect on 1 January 2020. To make sure we’re all on the same page, I’ve answered some FAQs. I am an

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What’s next for the financial advice Safe Harbour provision?

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The Safe Harbour provision was supposed to provide financial advisers with more certainty in meeting their legal obligation to act in the best interests of their clients. But in the aftermath of the Hayne Royal Commission, the Safe Harbour provision’s days may be numbered. What is the Safe Harbour? More importantly, what isn’t the Safe

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