Regulatory “Rinkles”: Spotlight on efficiently, honestly and fairly

By Michael Vrisakis This edition of Regulatory Rinkles deals with the scope of the concept of “financial services” for the purposes of assessing the obligations of an Australian financial services licensee under Division 3 of Part 7.6 of the Corporations Act, primarily section 912A. The issue is of particular relevance in the context of the obligation … Read more

Impending changes to fee disclosure transitional provisions

ASIC has (again) flagged that it will be amending the transitional arrangements in the ASIC Corporations (Disclosure of Fees and Costs) Instrument 2019/1070 (Instrument) on its superannuation fund COVID-19 FAQ page: ASIC will be amending the transitional arrangements for Product Disclosure Statements (PDSs) shortly to allow entities to come into the new disclosure regime from … Read more

Regulatory “Rinkles”: Spotlight on disclosure

This column in our FSR Australia Notes will deal with areas of financial services regulation which are either often misunderstood or are otherwise difficult to navigate. The first of our Regulatory Rinkles deals with further disclosure issues arising under Part 7.9 of the Corporations Act, and follows on from our COVID-19 disclosure module. Read more

FINANCIAL PRODUCT DISCLOSURE IN THE AGE OF COVID-19

This article is the first in a series by our team which will explore the practical implications of COVID-19 on the financial services industry and our clients' businesses. In particular, this series is part of our Financial Services’ “Integrated Legal Enhanced Assisted Productivity (I-LEAP) Initiative” which examines various areas of business activity where we feel legal solutions can result in productivity gains and efficiencies Read more

First judicial challenge to ASIC’s use of its new product intervention power fails

By Fiona Smedley, Graeme Johnson, Ewan MacDonald, Julian Vertoudakis and Soraya Pradhan   On 15 April 2020 the Federal Court confirmed[1] that a judicial review application lodged in September 2019 to challenge ASIC’s exercise of its new product intervention power (PIP) had failed. The judicial review challenge related to a class wide intervention in relation to … Read more

Changes for AFSL applicants and updates for foreign AFSL applicants, including guidance on the ‘fit and proper person’ test

By Fiona Smedley, Ewan MacDonald, Nick Alexander and Soraya Pradhan    The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has made important changes to the requirements for new and current applicants for a ‘full’ Australian financial services license (AFSL) and a ‘foreign’ AFSL. By updating Information Sheet 240 (INFO 240), Regulatory Guide 105 (RG 105), and … Read more

The fairness doctrine: a return to the status quo?

By Michael Vrisakis, Tamanna Islam and Shan-Verne Liew In October 2019, the Full Federal Court decision in ASIC v Westpac Securities Administration Limited [2019] FCAFC 187 (ASIC v Westpac) raised questions about the scope of the obligation on AFS licensees to act efficiently, honestly and fairly. Less than 6 months later, the Federal Court’s decision in ASIC v … Read more

ASIC proposes new guidance on ongoing fee arrangements

ASIC is proposing to issue guidance on how it will regulate ongoing fee arrangements (OFAs). Depending on the position it takes, these arrangements, which have been challenging for the advice industry to comply with since they were introduced as part of the Future of Financial Advice reforms, could be simplified or may become even more onerous. Read more