Professional Planner once again went on the road with the Financial Planning Association of Australia at its annual series of roadshows. Here were the most important messages FPA chief Dante De Gori shared with members.

  1. Professionalism has a timeline

Through the formation of FASEA and a series of key dates for planner qualification, we now know when planners will be expected to meet the standards set by the new board. Existing planners have until 2024 to meet the new education benchmark – an extended deadline for which the FPA has long argued.

  1. The FPA is lobbying for a single exam

There have been various proposals about what form the qualifying exam for all planners should take, but the FPA is advocating for a single exam. Some of the areas it should cover include tax law, compliance, anti-money laundering, common law fiduciary duties and ethics. Multiple, modular exams would be costly to implement and administer, De Gori said.

  1. Brokers, investors, journalists won’t be able to call themselves planners

With the enshrinement of the term ‘financial planner/adviser’ in law, only qualified financial planners will be able to label themselves that.

  1. ASIC is watching accountants

It’s been more than a year since the self-managed super fund exemption for accountants expired and the Australian Securities and Investments Commission plans to do some surveillance, both on accountants who are qualified to provide SMSFs and those who are not.

  1. ‘Best interests’ will finally be defined

What defines ‘best interests’ has been an area of contention in financial planning, but through a series of court cases, more detail will emerge on what it means for practising planners.

  1. The current generation of planners must inspire the next generation

With the number of consumers accessing advice diminishing, existing planners and professional bodies such as the FPA need to work with universities, graduates and younger aspiring planners to make sure there is enough qualified and inspired talent in the next generation.

Professional Planner is the main media partner of the FPA National Roadshow. To register, click here.

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