The Government has confirmed it will introduce changes into Parliament that will extend the time-frames for advisers to undertake the FASEA exam and complete its new minimum education standards.
Under the new requirements, advisers who were registered on the Financial Adviser Register on 1 January 2019 will be required to:
- Complete the FASEA-approved exam by 1 January 2022
- Meet FASEA’s minimum qualification requirements by 1 January 2026
Previously, advisers were only given until 1 January 2021 to pass the exam and until 1 January 2024 to meet the minimum education standards. This means advisers have one extra year to pass the exam and two extra years to complete their required studies.
In a statement released by Assistant Minister for Superannuation, Financial Services and Financial Technology, Senator Jane Hume, which coincided with the final afternoon of the 2019 AFA Conference in Adelaide, the Senator reiterated her Government’s dedication to raising the education, training and ethical standards of financial advisers via FASEA.
In making these changes, however, Senator Hume conceded the need to balance the impact of these reforms against maintaining the ongoing availability, quality and affordability of advice:
…the Government intends to legislate to provide additional time
“Therefore, the Government intends to legislate to provide additional time for existing advisers to meet new qualification and examination requirements set by FASEA,” she said.
Senator Hume’s statement clarified that the extension of the exam will ensure that all advisers, including rural and regional advisers, will have two years to sit the exam “…as originally intended.”
She added that the extension of the qualification requirements will assist working parents, including those taking parental leave during the transition period, to have sufficient time to meet the requirements, thereby maintaining a diverse adviser industry.
Senator Hume addressed the AFA Conference earlier in the week, at which time it was anticipated she may make a statement regarding the extensions, which had been called for by both the AFA and FPA.
Delegates, however, were given news of the time extensions at the final plenary session of the Conference, and appeared to respond positively to the additional breathing space that is to be legislated.