The corporate regulator has abandoned its fee-for-no-service criminal conduct case against AMP’s flagship dealer group after consultation with the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions.

In a statement released Friday morning ASIC said it has finalised the investigation into AMP Financial Planning’s fee-for-no-service conduct that arose from inquiries made at the Hayne Royal Commission.

The fee-for-no-service charges, which were tied to AMP’s buyer-of-last-resort issues, involved a breach of section 1041G (prohibition on dishonest conduct) of the Corporations Act  and

While not releasing details about the case, ASIC made clear the CDPP believed there was not a strong enough case to warrant continuation of the investigation.

“The CDPP has now determined, on the basis of the available evidence and weighing the relevant public interest factors, that no charges should be brought for that conduct,” ASIC stated. “No further action will be taken on these matters.”

In response to the news, AMP general counsel David Cullen released a statement saying the company “acknowledges the deficiencies in historic systems and processes within the advice business…”.

“In 2018, the business completed the implementation of enhanced systems and controls to improve monitoring and reporting and to protect against recurrence,” Cullen stated. “We have apologised to all affected clients and confirm that remediation was also completed in full in 2018.”

ASIC originally briefed the CDPP on evidence it held against AMP FP in April 2019.

The AMP fee-for-no-service case is just one of five civil penalty investigations ASIC eventually commenced in the federal court that are part of the AMP group.

“ASIC’s investigations into other allegations of fees for no service conduct within the AMP Limited group are continuing,” the regulator stated.

 

Tahn Sharpe is a Sydney-based financial services journalist with a background in financial planning. He writes on advice, superannuation, investment, banking and insurance issues, is a certified SMSF Adviser and holds an Advanced Diploma of Financial Planning. Contact at [email protected]
Leave a comment