Trade union slams adviser associations

The Finance Sector Union has used a submission to the royal commission to challenge industry associations’ ability to discipline their members in instances where misconduct has been reported.

The royal commission made the submissions it received in response to its financial advice hearings publicly available on Thursday. 

In its response to the royal commission’s financial advice hearings, the Finance Sector Union (FSU) said the current regulatory environment was not adequate, and that professional associations’ disciplinary measures are not adequate.

“The various membership-based professional associations appear more focused on member recruitment (including as between each other) and servicing, than the disciplining of the members,” the submission said.


“The employer’s response, the various conduct background check protocols are inappropriate and unsustainable – it provides no meaningful protection for consumers (who have no access to the information), and in failing to provide any procedural fairness to those adversely named, will inevitably be subject to legal challenge.”

The FSU added that “there are similar gaps” related to professional standards credentials, vertical integration and accountability for AFSL holders and their senior managers, and that regulation of financial services should be reformed to provide better disciplinary measures while factoring in the culture created by business’ managers.

“The regulation should also impose obligations on licensees, manufacturers of financial services and platform providers. At a high level such obligations should ensure that they take all reasonable steps to ensure that financial advice services and products offered to customers are in the customer’s best interest,” the submission said.

A full list of the submissions made to the royal commission can be read here:

Trade union slams adviser associations
Trade unions, finance sector union, FSU, trade associations, professional associations, royal commission, inappropriate advice
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