Today, the Albanese Government is announcing that it will delay the financial adviser registration requirement until 1 July 2023.
The Financial Sector Reform (Hayne Royal Commission Response—Better Advice) Act 2021 (the Act) introduced a central registration requirement for financial advisers, in line with recommendation 2.10 of the Financial Services Royal Commission.
This change was implemented to give full effect to the new disciplinary system for financial advisers, allowing the cancellation of registration for serious misconduct.
The Act had required that all financial advisers who provide personal advice to retail clients be registered by 1 January 2023.
Registration was proposed to occur in two stages – stage one being a one‑off registration process administered by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) using the Financial Advisers Register (FAR), with the second stage to commence once the FAR transitions to the Australian Tax Office as part of the Australian Business Registry Service.
ASIC has been engaging closely with industry about how best to implement stage one, with a view to ensuring the obligation on licensees to register financial advisers operates as efficiently as possible.
Through this engagement, ASIC has identified ways to improve the operation of the stage one registration process with benefits for licensees.
Delaying the requirement for financial advisers to be registered until 1 July 2023 will allow these improvements to be implemented. The registration obligation in stage one will remain with licensees.