ASIC has now launched the second stage of the Financial Advisers Register (FAR) which now includes information about advisers’ qualifications, training and memberships of professional bodies.
The register, which has been available to the public since the end of March this year, can be searched on ASIC’s MoneySmart website www.moneysmart.gov.au. To date there have been more than 60,000 visits and more than 100,000 searches undertaken on the register.
There are more than 23,000 financial advisers now on the register. It contains details of persons employed or authorised – directly or indirectly – by Australian financial services (AFS) licensees to provide personal financial advice to retail clients on investments, superannuation and life insurance.
ASIC Deputy Chairman, Peter Kell said, ‘From today consumers will be able to see the qualifications and professional memberships in addition to the basic information about advisers already available on the register. We want consumers to be able to make an informed decision in their choice of adviser and the register is a good starting point.’
ASIC has also made available data from the Financial Advisers Register to the Australian Government website www.data.gov.au which can be downloaded free of charge. The data snapshot will enable easy and quick analysis of aspects of the financial advice industry.
The transition phase for the new register will end at the end of September 2015. From 1 October 2015 late fee penalties will apply. ASIC can take action for providing a false or misleading statement to ASIC under the Corporations Act.