FASEA consultation crucial to advice industry

SMSF Association Media Release

20 November 2018

The release of the updated guidance on financial advice education and ethical standards from the Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA) shows “work remains to be done” to ensure just recognition of existing advisers’ prior learning and education.

Commenting on the FASEA Standards Summary, released late Friday, SMSF Association CEO John Maroney says: “This latest publication illustrates that FASEA had listened to industry feedback by improving clarity around the code of ethics, reducing its CPD requirements to more realistic levels and clarifying some elements of its education standards for existing advisers.
“This has definitely allayed some of the concerns we had expressed to FASEA in our submissions.

“But the Association still has strong concerns about how the education and ethical standards will be implemented for existing advisers to ensure appropriate transition to the new education standards. In particular, we have concerns regarding how the standards accommodate limited licence advisers.”

“In our opinion, it means the upcoming consultation period on the draft legislation will be crucial to ensure that FASEA implements its standards in a way that is fair to existing advisers with regards to their prior learning and education.

“It’s important FASEA gets this right, both for advisers and their clients. The Association therefore urges FASEA to take as much time as required to ensure the detail of the legislative instruments achieves the right outcome instead of having a rushed consultation to meet the proposed 1 January 2019 deadline.”

Maroney says the Association will consult with its members on the final details of the keenly awaited legislative instruments and provide FASEA with submissions accordingly.

He adds that the Association remains committed to raising education, training and ethical standards for financial advisers and improving their professionalism, “making it imperative that the final legislative package achieves an equitable outcome for advisers while delivering improved protection for consumers”.