Financial advisers will need to complete 40 hours of continuing professional development (CPD) each year, of which 70 per cent will need to be approved by the licensee, including four hours of professional reading, according to the education standards authority.
The Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA) issued its final legislative instrument for CPD standards today, stating it has registered the legislative instrument and explanatory statement on the Federal Register of Legislation.
The minimum hours per CPD category are five hours of technical, five hours of client care, five hours of regulatory compliance and consumer protection, and nine hours of professionalism and ethics.
The balance of 16 hours will consist of qualifying CPD and can be allocated to areas of advisers’ greater needs. This may, for example, include technical competence or industry specialisation.
Advisers will be able to count 30 hours of their formal study towards CPD hours and all CPD activity will be applied across multiple categories as long as there is no double counting of hours.
FASEA said it has adopted various other suggestions received during stakeholder feedback in the final legislative instrument.
This includes a transition period to 31 March 2019 for documentation of CPD policies and plans and an increase in the number of formal study hours that may count towards the ongoing professional development requirement from 25 to 30 hours.
Part-timers with licensees’ prior written consent are entitled to a 10 per cent reduction to 36 hours of required CPD while still being required to cover minimum knowledge areas.
The legislative instrument also allows for licensees to maintain CPD records on behalf of their advisers.
“We thank stakeholders for their constructive input during the consultation process for FASEA’s continuing professional development determination and are pleased to have reflected this input where appropriate in the legislative Instrument,” FASEA chief executive Stephen Glenfield said.