ASIC, Compliance, financial advice

Adviser registration date pushed back again

Adviser registration date

ASIC has extended the date by which financial advisers must be registered with the regulator by a further three months, with the new date set for October.

The date by which the registration of financial advisers with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) must take place has been extended a second time and will move from 1 July to 1 October this year.

The requirement for the registration of financial advisers was a recommendation of the Hayne royal commission and legislation was passed by the previous government that required advisers to be registered by 1 January 2023.

This date was pushed back to 1 July 2023 late last year by Assistant Treasurer and Financial Services Minister Stephen Jones, who at the time said ASIC had identified ways to improve the operation of the registration process and would delay the start date to implement those improvements.

Those improvements were introduced into parliament in February this year via the Treasury Laws Amendment (2023 Measures No 1) Bill 2023, which was referred to the Senate Economics Legislation Committee for an inquiry and report, which is due by 2 June.

“A further delay to the registration requirement will allow time for parliament to consider the improvements proposed by the bill [and] ASIC to assist the financial advice industry to understand and comply with the registration requirement by issuing regulatory guidance and conducting webinars,” ASIC said.

The corporate regulator added the delay would allow Australian financial services licensees (AFSL) to understand the registration requirements and make applications to register their relevant providers, and after the bill was law it would issue regulatory guidance, conduct webinars and open the registration portal to accept applications for registration.

The registration process will be in two stages and under the delayed first stage, AFSLs will be required to register advisers with ASIC, which will use the Financial Advisers Register (FAR), while stage two will take place once the FAR has transitioned to the ATO as part of the Australian Business Registry Service and advisers will be required to register themselves individually and renew their registration annually.

“The registration requirement is new. It is separate, and in addition to, the pre-existing requirements for an AFSL to appoint a relevant provider to the FAR after they have been authorised. Provisional relevant providers cannot be registered,” ASIC said.

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