Documents presented to the royal commission show Colonial First State did not require licensees to provide confirmation ongoing services were provided to members for fees to be paid.
During a lengthy grilling from counsel assisting Michael Hodge, CFS executive general manager Linda Elkins was asked about an internal presentation from November 2016 regarding licensee service fees.
Mr Hodge paid particular attention to a line within the presentation, which explained that CFS “[did] not require (or intend to require) licensees to provide positive confirmation of ongoing service” in order to receive the fees at the time the presentation was delivered.
Ms Elkins countered that this was “just incorrect”, but agreed with Mr Hodge’s assessment of the sentence.
“You said this statement is just wrong. This seems to be saying you don't require licensees to provide positive [confirmation]?” Hodge asked.
“I guess you're right. It says positive, yes,” Ms Elkins said.
“So that is correct?”
“That's correct, although not necessarily because any case where we investigate we would require them to provide that positive attestation.”
CFS is currently reviewing new ways for licensees to confirm ongoing services are provided, Ms Elkins said, adding that many advisers have “been very helpful” with this process.
“They obviously also are aware of the ASIC report and advisers are working with us to look at how that can be provided,” she said.
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