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LRBA advice results in ASIC ban

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has banned Drew Crosskreutz from providing financial advice for three years after ruling he had broken the law by not acting in his clients’ best interests.

ASIC surveillance of the Queensland-based Crosskreutz found he had breached the best interest duty requirement when advising clients to set up an SMSF in order to use limited recourse borrowing arrangements (LRBA) to purchase property in the fund.

According to the corporate regulator, Crosskreutz’s illegal activities took place between January 2013 and September 2016 when he was an authorised representative of AIW Dealer Services.

Specifically, ASIC’s probe found he had failed to properly identify the type of advice his clients were seeking and reasonably investigate the most suitable financial products for their needs, make reasonable inquiries into the client’s relevant objectives, financial situation and needs, make his client’s interests a priority, and understand what his obligations were regarding the best interests duty.

“The decision to establish an SMSF is one of the most significant steps a consumer can take in relation to their retirement savings. It is therefore essential that before making the decision to set up an SMSF, consumers have access to good-quality, tailored advice that is not conflicted,” ASIC deputy chair Peter Kell said.

Crosskreutz has the right to have the Administrative Appeals Tribunal review ASIC’s decision.

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