The Financial Advisers Register (FAR) is a listing of all people or entities that provide personal advice on investments, superannuation, and life insurance to retail clients. Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL) Holders and Authorised Representatives need to ensure they have provided all the necessary information to ASIC.
What is the Purpose of the Register?
The Financial Advisers Register allows consumers to check the authorisations of a Financial Adviser before seeking advice from them. The register includes details such as:
- Where a financial adviser has worked;
- The adviser's qualifications, training, and memberships of professional bodies; and
- The products the adviser is authorised to advise on.
The FAR also allows:
- participants in the industry to verify information about advisers they are seeking to employ; and
- ASIC to be able to identify and monitor all registered Financial Advisers in Australia.
What information must be provided to ASIC?
AFSL holders must ensure they provide ASIC with all the required information, as it is considered a breach of their licence obligations if they fail to do so. AFSL holders should provide ASIC with the following information regarding their financial advisers:
- The date of appointment to the AFSL;
- The representative number;
- Their Australian Business Number (ABN);
- Any given names including family name;
- Date and Country of Birth;
- State and City of Birth (if in Australia);
- The principal place of Business;
- Email address (this is not displayed on the public Register);
- Adviser role type i.e., financial adviser, or provisional financial adviser;
- Continuing Professional Development (CPD) details and year start date (this is not displayed on the public register);
- Financial Adviser Exam Pass Date; and
- Qualification details.
What does the Register mean for Financial Advisers?
All new Financial Advisers must comply with all of the professional standards and complete their Professional Year before they can be added to the Register. For more information regarding the current standards and training requirements, you can read our recent blog article. If an adviser has met the education requirements and passed the Financial Advisers Exam, but is still completing their Professional Year, they can be added to the FAR as a 'provisional adviser'.
If you are a Financial Adviser and your employer has not added you to the Register, you should ask them to do so. This will ensure you are listed as authorised to provide personal advice on the respective financial products that you are qualified and authorised for. Once you have been added to the register, you should check that your details are correct so that any attempt to contact you, either by ASIC or a client, is received. Any changes to an adviser's details must be updated on the register within 30 business days.
All AFSL holders and Authorised Representatives should regularly review the register to ensure information is current and correctly recorded. Regularly reviewing the register ensures that the public, including ASIC and any potential clients are receiving a true and accurate reflection of the Adviser's education, qualifications, and memberships. Additionally, any incorrect information can be removed or updated. If an adviser's information on the register is incorrect, AFSL holders and Authorised Representatives can request a correction to the register. ASIC may also be notified of any changes via the online ASIC Connect Portal and fees may apply.