TPB unprepared for TASA

The Tax Practitioners Board (TPB) is “very much in the dark” when it comes to the implementation of the proposed Tax Agent Services Act amendments, says Australian Unity's Craig Meldrum.

Mr Meldrum, who is the head of advice at Australian Unity Personal Financial Services, said his talks with the TPB have revealed a lack of preparedness for the TASA regulation.

“In my discussions with the TPB, they are very much in the dark on the best model to implement,” he told ifa.

[This is true] not only for the regulation of financial planners and risk specialists who will become subject to the TPB's Code of Professional Conduct once registered, but also the practicalities of registering up to 55,000 representatives, authorised representatives and licensees within the three-year transition period,” said Mr Meldrum.

Despite the “rigorous debate” around the proposed amendments to TASA, Mr Meldrum said he hadn't heard any planners saying 'we don't want this' – instead, the industry simply wants more thought put into the process.

In all the rhetoric and needless politicisation of the bill, the distracting and unhelpful criticism of the advice profession from some sectors has not focused on why the [financial planning bodies] have lobbied for more time,” he said.

For advisers who are working hard to comply with the Future of Financial Advice reforms, the big questions is: 'How will this work and what does it mean for my clients and my ability to adviser them effectively?', said Mr Meldrum.

The parliamentary joint committee on corporations and financial services is holding its first public hearing on the proposed TASA amendments in Sydney today. 

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