Member Conduct & Discipline

Overview of Member Conduct & Discipline

The SMSF Association is a self-regulating professional association whose members voluntarily agree to be bound by various professional, technical and ethical standards.

Membership of the SMSF Association requires a professional to conduct himself/herself in a professional, business-like manner at all times. The SMSF Association Code of Professional Conduct and Disciplinary Procedures (‘the Code’) details the expected minimum acceptable professional standards applicable to all SMSF Association members.

The SMSF Association has an obligation to consider complaints against members for misconduct strictly within the terms of its Constitution and the Code. It is important to note that this process is not a legal process, but rather an internal process to determine whether a member has breached any of the major principles contained in the Code and the impact such conduct may have on their continued membership. Our process deals with complaints relating to professional standards only, not commercial disputes.

The SMSF Association has no legal capacity to make awards for damages or restitution of property. If you are seeking such resolution then you should seek legal advice.

Cases before the courts

Where a matter which is the subject of a formal complaint against a member is also before the courts, the SMSF Association will suspend further consideration of the complaint until the court process is concluded. This is done to ensure our investigation process is not used to influence any legal action nor prejudice the legal process.

 

The complaint process

If you intend lodging a complaint to the SMSF Association, we recommend you first contact us to determine whether the individual is a member of the SMSF Association.

The SMSF Association will only accept a signed written complaint where the identity of the complainant is provided. We will not accept anonymous complaints. In addition, a complaint will not be accepted and investigated unless all information requested is provided including documentation in support of the complaint.

The complaint process is based on full transparency for both the complainant and the member. This requires that a full copy of the complaint be provided to the member for comment. Any replies from both the member and the complainant are provided to the other party.

The time taken to investigate a complaint will vary depending on a number of factors including response times, complexity of the complaint and whether or not legal or other external action is also taken.

You will be notified in writing of the outcome of your complaint.

 

Submitting your complaint

Complaints may be made by any person and are to be made by completing the Member Complaint Form below.

Download and complete the SMSF Association Member Complaint Form.

The PDF can be completed electronically, or printed and filled out by hand before being emailed or mailed to the contact details located on the form. If completing the form electronically, ensure you save the completed form before Adobe Acrobat will permit you to email it to the SMSF Association.

Please forward your completed complaint form and all supporting documentation to:

complaints@smsfassociation.com

OR

Complaints Officer
SMSF Association
PO Box 3296
RUNDLE MALL   SA   5000

Privacy statement

The information (as defined by the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth)) you provide to the SMSF Association in relation to your complaint will be used to investigate your complaint and in any SMSF Association disciplinary proceedings.

The SMSF Association may disclose the information in relation to the complaint to:

  • The member who is the subject of the complaint and their representative where applicable
  • The SMSF Association Professional Standards Committee and any SMSF Association staff involved in the disciplinary process
  • Statutory or regulatory bodies as required by law
  • Other professional bodies of which the member may also be a member

Click here for more information on the SMSF Association’s Privacy Policy.

SMSF Association Complaints Register

The following provides statistics of the nature of complaints brought against members of the SMSF Association, and actions taken against those members. The statistics are recorded on the basis of a Membership Year of 1 April to 31 March.

Nature of Complaint

The table below records the nature of complaints brought against members of the SMSF Association. The nature of complaints have been categorised into 6 categories, with the number of complaints recorded in each particular category in the relevant membership years.

 2018/20192017/20182016/2017
Criminal conviction11
Statutory offence bringing discredit to member, association or profession1
Failure to observe proper standard of professional care, skill and competence311
Breach of Association Code of Professional Conduct and Disciplinary Procedures1103
Breach of Association Branding policy
Other Complaints

Action taken by the SMSF Association

The table below records the action taken by the Association against those members that have had a complaint brought against them. The action is recorded only once the Professional Standards Committee has fully investigated the complaint and determined the most appropriate course of action.

 2018/20192017/20182016/2017
Cancellation of Membership412
Suspension of Specialist designation or Membership for a defined period93
Reprimand2
Practice review
No action required1
Other1
Investigation ongoing