ASIC Paper on affordable advice ‘a welcomed initiative’

The SMSF Association welcomes the release of ASIC’s Consultation Paper, “Promoting access to affordable advice for consumers”, believing it to be an important step forward in addressing the vexed issue of consumers having access to quality financial advice in a cost-effective way.

Association CEO John Maroney says: “It’s encouraging that ASIC is committing to consult with the industry on this issue of ensuring advisers can provide quality personal advice to consumers that is affordable.

“The Association has long been concerned about the regulatory burden involved in providing advice, so this initiative provides an opportunity to find solutions that are affordable and workable for advisers and consumers without sacrificing the integrity of the advice.”

The Consultation Paper will seek information from industry participants about what they believe impedes them from delivering affordable personal advice. ASIC is particularly interested in better understanding those issues that are in its powers to address.

Maroney says that for SMSF advisers, being able to provide limited advice is a key issue. “We believe this process is our opportunity to address the failed ‘limited licence’ regime and re-design a way for our members to provide scaled advice scoped purely for consumers with an SMSF.”

The Association now intends to collate member feedback, provide practical case studies, and undertake roundtables and focus groups over the next few months to present a compelling case to ASIC for the need for scaled advice for the SMSF sector.

“We want to outline to ASIC what the real SMSF barriers are and what needs to be done to solve them. We will be in touch with members to discuss this process soon,” Maroney says.