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More Code changes planned

Changes being proposed to the Code of Conduct for Authorised Financial Advisers are fine-tuning to ensure it is fit for purpose, the chair of the committee that administers the code says.

Tuesday, October 27th 2015, 6:00AM

by Susan Edmunds

It was announced on Friday that the Code Committee is to commence a formal consultation process on some changes it is considering.

The code sets out the rules that AFAs must abide by, covering qualifications, conflicts of interest, CPD requirements and advice suitability.

The committee expects to release a consultation paper tomorrow.

Committee chairman David Ireland said most of the changes were being made to recognise the new Level 5 certificate, the minimum qualification standard for AFAs.

It will be set as the default and the code's alternative qualification scheme will recognise the old qualification for a period so that those advisers currently going through that qualification have time to complete it.

The code also needed to be updated to address changes as a result of the Financial Markets Conduct Act coming into effect, he said.

But Ireland said the changes were just to ensure that the code still met its objectives. “We do not believe it would be appropriate to inflict further upheaval on the industry at the moment in light of the Financial Advisers Act review, even if we wanted to,” he said.

He said the consultation would give people the opportunity to provide feedback on other issues as well if they wanted to.

“We’re open to looking at that but would consider a high threshold before we would want to change anything substantive beyond the maintenance points we are proposing to act.”

Ireland said the fact the Code could change as a result of the FAA review was no reason not to make needed changes now.

Tags: Code Committee David Ireland

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