Property tutor’s AFA rejection upheld
A high-profile property figure has failed in his appeal against the Financial Markets Authority's decision to reject him as an Authorised Financial Adviser.
Tuesday, April 24th 2012, 3:56PM 5 Comments
by Niko Kloeten
Sean Wood, the owner of property seminar and education business PropertyTutors, wanted to become an AFA in order to provide advice on more complex investment products and offer investment management and planning services.
The FMA denied his application on October 21 last year, determining he was not a person of good character after he failed to disclose convictions under the Building Act.
In what is understood to be the first case of its type since the new regulatory regime came into force, Wellington District Court Judge Stephen Harrop has ruled in favour of the FMA.
The judge wasn't swayed by Wood's argument that he didn't realise his convictions, for unconsented building work and failure to comply with a notice to fix in relation to a property in South Auckland, would be relevant to the AFA process.
"Mr Wood's failure to disclose convictions and, more importantly, the fact of his conduct behind the convictions and his attitude to compliance with the law, mean that he is not of good character such as is required to be an AFA," Judge Harrop said in his decision
"The FMA quite properly came to the conclusion, in effect, that the adverse inferences it could and did properly draw as to his character meant that it could not be satisfied that he would comply with the onerous documentary, ethical and fiduciary obligations with which an AFA must comply."
FMA head of primary regulatory operations Sue Brown said it was important that applications to become an AFA were assessed rigorously.
"The Financial Advisers Act seeks to promote high standards of professionalism and integrity. FMA's role is to ensure that applicants have the insight, knowledge and attitude necessary to uphold and respect those standards."
Niko Kloeten can be contacted at email@example.com
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