Registration of Financial Advisers – Due by 16 February 2024

From 16 February 2024, financial advisers, except provisional advisers, who provide personal advice to retail clients on relevant financial products must be registered with ASIC. The requirement to be registered is a new obligation and is not the same as (but is in addition to) financial advisers being listed on the Financial Advisers Register.

Registration will take part in two stages:

StageRequirementDue Date
1Australian Financial Services (AFS) Licensees must register the relevant providers who are authorised under the AFS Licence.1 February 2024 (and ongoing until 30 June 2026)
2Relevant providers must register themselves.Commencing 1 July 2026

Who needs to be registered?

Financial advisers who provide personal advice on relevant products to retail clients must be registered. The requirement to register a financial adviser does not apply to provisional advisers employed or authorised by the AFS Licensee.

What are relevant products?

Relevant products are financial products other than basic banking products, general insurance products, consumer credit insurance or a combination of these products.

Deemed Registration

Deemed registration applies to financial advisers who:

  • were registered as an individual tax (financial) adviser with the Tax Practitioners Board immediately prior to 1 January 2022; or
  • had a pending application for registration as an individual tax (financial) adviser with the Tax Practitioners Board which was approved after 1 January 2022.

 

AFS Licensees are not required to lodge an application with ASIC to register financial advisers who are deemed registered.

How do AFS Licensee's register Financial Advisers?

AFS Licensees must use the ASIC Connect portal to register all financial advisers as soon as possible after the financial adviser has been appointed by the AFS Licensee and added to the Financial Advisers Register. ASIC’s records indicate that a significant number of financial advisers have not registered with ASIC as a relevant provider. The registration of financial advisers was therefore, extended from 1 February 2024 until 16 February 2024.

A new financial adviser must be registered prior to providing any personal advice to retail clients. Existing financial advisers must be registered from 16 February 2024 to legally continue providing personal advice to retail clients.

A fee of $50 will apply to the registration of each financial adviser.

ASIC Extends deadline for financial adviser registration

Information needed to register

AFS Licensees will need to provide the following information for each financial adviser to be registered:

  • their representative number (found on the Financial Advisers Register);
  • their principal place of business address;
  • their personal or direct work email address;
  • contact phone number.

The financial adviser and AFS Licensee will receive notice of registration from ASIC.

Declarations

When registering financial advisers, AFS Licensee’s will be required to make a declaration that:

  • it has received a declaration from the financial adviser that they are a fit and proper person to provide personal advice to retail clients on relevant financial products; and
  • is not aware of any reason why the financial adviser may not be a fit and proper person to provide personal advice to retail clients on relevant financial products.

 

This requires each financial adviser to provide to their authorising AFS Licensee, a declaration that they are a fit and proper person to provide personal advice. Without this declaration, the form to register the financial adviser cannot be lodged. The form of the declaration from the financial adviser can be determined between the AFS Licensee and the financial adviser, ASIC has not provided a template.

What is a fit and proper person?

When making the declaration that the AFS Licensee is not aware of any reason why the financial adviser may not be a fit and proper person, ASIC expects the AFS Licensee to consider the following factors in relation to the financial adviser:

  • had an AFS Licence, Australian Credit Licence or registration as a credit representative suspended or cancelled;
  • been the subject of a banning or disqualification order;
  • ever been disqualified from managing a corporation;
  • ever been banned from engaging in a credit activity;
  • ever been linked to a refusal or failure to give effect to a determination made by AFCA;
  • ever been insolvent, convicted of an offence or been the subject of an instrument made by the Financial Services and Credit Panel.

Fit and Proper considerations

The declaration will also include details about the financial adviser’s compliance with the professional standards requirements, including whether the financial adviser has:

Background

The requirement for financial advisers’ registration was introduced by the Financial Sector Reform (Hayne Royal Commission Response—Better Advice) Act 2021. This new requirement added to the existing requirement for AFS Licensees to appoint a relevant provider to the Financial Advisers Register upon being authorised by the AFS Licensee.

Further Reading

 

If you need help registering your financial advisers, or preparing a declaration for the advisers to complete, please contact us.

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