Stephen Jones speaking at a Conexus event in March

The government will go ahead with the 10-year requirement for the experience pathway with draft legislation released on Tuesday for consultation.

The bill entitled Treasury Laws Amendment (Measures 4 for Future Bills) Bill 2023: Recognising 5 experience in the financial advice will still require advisers to pass the adviser exam, as well as having a clean record.

The 10 years cumulative experience boundary will between the start of 2007 and the end of 2021. Strangely, the disciplinary record requirement cut off ends on 31 December 2021.

Officially, a “clean record” will be defined as not being banned or disqualified nor given an undertaking under the ASIC Act.

Anyone eligible for the education carve out must make a self-declaration confirming they have met all the criteria to be an experienced provider, which can be done to their licensee if they are an authorised representative.

The law would require a notice to be lodged to ASIC within 30 business days after 1 January 2026 or within 30 business days of the adviser becoming a relevant provider.

AFSLs will be held accountable for authorising relevant providers under the experience pathway, and the individual adviser and licensee will be hit with criminal and/or civil penalties for giving false or misleading information.

Financial advisers who are also registered tax agents will also no longer be required to meet the additional education requirements to be a qualified tax relevant provider.

Relief for grads in limbo

To help potential advisers whose degrees may not be approved for technical or clerical reasons, the draft legislation allows new entrants to apply to the Minister to have their degree recognised.

“This provides greater flexibility to new entrants, recognising that there may be different study pathways available to satisfy the education and training standard,” the explanatory memorandum for the draft legislation said.

The draft bill recognises there are circumstances where a person has completed a domestic qualification equivalent to an approved degree but are currently prevented from entering the profession.

Long journey

At the end of 2021 while shadow minister, Jones proposed the experience pathway to prevent further advisers from departing the industry.