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Advisers handed new guidance on dealing with ASIC's single disciplinary body

The corporate regulator’s newly formed Financial Services and Credit Panel (FSCP) was formed this year.

ASIC has released new regulatory guidance about the single disciplinary body and financial advisers' dealing with it.

Regulatory guide 263 provides an overview of the purposes of the FSCP — established within ASIC as the single disciplinary body for financial advisers in support of the Better Advice Bill — as well as processes and procedures around hearings and decisions.

Meanwhile, information sheet 273 explains the rights of advisers affected by an FSCP decision, including how to make an application to vary or revoke a decision and how to seek an independent review of an FSCP decision.

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Under the ruling, ASIC can refer disciplinary matters regarding financial advisers to the FSCP. The FSCP acts separately from, but alongside, ASIC’s own administrative decision-making processes.

"The FSCP has been given its own functions and powers to consider and take action in response to financial adviser misconduct. We look forward to working with the industry members of the FSCP who will bring their technical knowledge and practical experience to disciplinary decisions," ASIC commissioner Danielle Press said.

"The FSCP, combined with ASIC’s new warning and reprimand powers, enables ASIC to respond to a range of financial advice misconduct, including lower-level misconduct that may otherwise go unaddressed."

About 31 part-time members were announced for the FSCP in February, which drew some criticism from industry groups.

Despite some backlash, the Financial Planning Association of Australia (FPA) head Sarah Abood said the body should be seen as a “positive” for the advice sector during an appearance on the ifa Show podcast.

“We've seen the panel members, that list released recently, and I think what I like about that is there are representatives across that panel from the broad sectors of the industry,” Ms Abood said.

“I think there's maybe been a bit of misunderstanding that the reason that panel is so broad is so that we can make sure that people who understand the particular issue are the ones that are reviewing it.

“So, we're not going to see a situation where someone from a timeshare apartment background is going to be sitting in judgement on a comprehensive advice financial adviser. Pretty confident that's not going to happen, but I think it's great news that we have that, and I certainly see some potential positives coming from that.”

Listen to the full episode with Ms Abood here.

Advisers handed new guidance on dealing with ASIC's single disciplinary body
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Neil Griffiths

Neil Griffiths

Neil is the Deputy Editor of the wealth titles, including ifa and InvestorDaily.

Neil is also the host of the ifa show podcast.

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