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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When can financial advisers recommend a switch to an in-house product?

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There is a conflict any time a financial adviser recommends an in-house product, but the conflict can be managed. ASIC has determined that conflicts with in-house products do exist In its Report 562, ASIC looked at the big five financial service institutions – CBA, Westpac, ANZ, NAB and AMP – and found that 68% of their

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Vertical (dis)integration – are you conflicted?

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Many financial advisers don’t think they have a conflict of interest, but they might be wrong. Thanks to the Royal Commission, everybody is talking about vertical integration and in-house conflicts. We explain what this means and highlight four things you can do to manage conflicts effectively. I’m a financial adviser. Am I conflicted? Probably. Vertically

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