AFA ‘fought doggedly’ for adviser education changes

The AFA said it submitted another paper to Treasury this week which suggests further changes to the professional standards draft, assuring advisers that the legislation is “heading in the right direction”.

In a letter to members, AFA president Deborah Kent said raising professional standards for advisers will be a key post-election issue, with all major parties expected to continue pushing for reform. 

While the new government may decide to take another direction with the legislation, the AFA board believes the current draft is on the right track, Ms Kent said.

“In the lead-up to the calling of the election, we achieved significant improvements in the legislation drafts,” she said.

“The AFA board is of the view that the current drafting is headed in the right direction, including with regards to transition arrangements for existing advisers for which we have fought doggedly.”

Ms Kent added that after consulting with a number of AFA members and licensee partners, the peak body has decided to submit a further paper to the Treasurer suggesting more improvements.

The new submission is not yet available to the public, an AFA spokesperson said. 

In April, the government released an updated draft, which showed changes to the timeframe within which existing advisers have to meet the proposed standards as well as the bachelor’s degree requirement.

According to a statement from Assistant Treasurer Kelly O'Dwyer, changes to the draft include clarification that the reforms "are not intended to require existing advisers to complete a bachelor's degree".

"Existing advisers will be required to reach degree equivalent status, which can be achieved via a number of flexible pathways, including by completing bridging courses approved by the new standards body," Ms O'Dwyer said.

The new draft also extends the transition timeframe from 2019 to 2024.

 

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