Authors: Sarah Thomas, Cat Dankos and Hywel Jenkins
At the end of January, the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) issued a further consultation paper (CP19/4, the CP) on the Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SMCR). Responses to the CP are requested by 23 April 2019. Alongside other minor proposed changes which seek to “optimise” the SMCR, the key proposals are:
- For all firms (banks, insurers, and all solo regulated firms), the legal function will not need to have a SMF Manager responsible for it.
- Responsibility still has to be allocated to someone, but that individual does not need to be a SMF Manager.
- The FCA expects the Head of Legal to be a certified function and that the conduct rules will apply to all legal staff.
- Banks and insurers need to think about whether to change their SMF Manager allocations in light of this confirmation (as well as statements of responsibility and responsibilities map), and how to depict the position of the legal function on their responsibilities map.
- For all firms (banks, insurers and solo regulated firms) the certification regime definition of the ‘client dealing’ function has been clarified (with a narrowing effect). It will exclude individuals who have no scope to exercise discretion.
- Insurers and banks may wish to cross-check their existing pool of client dealing staff against the proposed new definition in readiness for the final rules.
- For solo regulated firms, the FCA has expanded the scope of the forthcoming Enhanced regime to cover more intermediaries.
- For limited scope solo regulated firms, Manager Conduct Rule 4 (SC4) will be amended to cover non-approved executive directors.