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Friday 14 June 2013

13-140MR ASIC releases information sheet about applying for a limited AFS licence

ASIC has released an information sheet to assist those intending to apply for a limited Australian financial services (AFS) licence.

Information Sheet 179 Applying for a limited AFS licence (INFO 179) gives practical guidance to help applicants work through the licensing process.

INFO 179:

  • Provides guidance about ASIC's licensing application process, and how it will apply to those seeking a limited AFS licence

  • outlines what information needs to be submitted in support of a limited AFS licence application, and

  • gives information about which ASIC guidance will be most relevant for those seeking a limited AFS licence.

An exemption in the Corporations Act 2001 currently allows accountants to provide advice on the establishment of self-managed superannuation funds (SMSFs), without the need for an AFS licence.

As part of the Future of Financial Advice (FOFA) reforms, this exemption will cease to apply on 1 July 2016. From 1 July 2013, accountants will be able to apply for the new limited AFS licence.

Download

INFO 179

Background

The current 'accountants' exemption' under regulation 7.1.29A of the Corporations Regulations 2001 permits accountants to provide advice on the establishment of self-managed superannuation funds SMSFs, without the need for an AFS licence.

While any person can apply for the new limited AFS licence, recognised accountants who apply between 1 July 2013 and 30 June 2016 can take advantage of transitional arrangements. Under the transitional arrangements, different organisational competence arrangements will apply where the responsible managers of the applicant are recognised accountants.

A recognised accountant is a person who holds a practising certificate issued by The Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia, CPA Australia Ltd, or the Institute of Public Accountants.

What is a limited AFS licence?

A limited AFS licence can contain the following authorisations. Applicants may select some or all of the authorisations:

  • financial product advice on self-managed superannuation funds (SMSFs)

  • advice on a client's existing superannuation, in certain circumstances, and

  • class of product advice on:

    • superannuation products

    • securities

    • simple managed investment schemes as defined in the Corporations Regulations 2001

    • general and life insurance, and

    • basic deposit products.

Last updated: 14/06/2013 12:00