The notion that an adviser might be able to transition their personal advice clients to a general advice model has piqued the interest of many in our Story of the Week, delivering an interim poll result that may surprise more than a few…

It’s possible to transition my personal advice clients to a general advice model
  • Disagree (44%)
  • Agree (38%)
  • Not sure (18%)

Our latest poll is taken from a recent article we published on the prospect of advisers considering a general advice model as one option to extend their client relationships and their advice business careers (see: Risk Advisers Still Don’t Know Options…).

While our report focussed on the seemingly high proportion of advisers who were unaware that a general advice model may be a future option for some, the article didn’t address the actual feasibility of an adviser already engaged in delivering personal advice being able to transition to a general advice proposition for their existing clients.

Feedback received by Riskinfo suggests many – possibly most – advisers think it would be challenging to make this transition. Some may consider such a transition to be impossible, given their personal history with many of their existing clients.

But our question here is not about whether transitioning from personal to general advice in order to extend your career would be easy or difficult. Rather, the question is about whether you think it’s possible.

This conversation highlights the fact that there may exist – at least for some advisers – more options to extend their career than they may have previously considered. And as more advisers learn about how a general advice model may be structured, perhaps this will in turn offer new possibilities.

Each adviser will have their own unique view on this question because each has their own unique base of clients. So, when it comes to your own circumstances – and those of your clients – do you think a general advice model could be a potential option for you in future, especially for those who may not or have not elected to sit the FASEA exam and/or achieve the minimum education standards by 1 January 2026.

Tell us what you think and we’ll report back next week…


  1. In todays world of constant change, the one thing that is a consistent message, is that you can do anything if you set your mind to it and you understand the world around you.

    The Regulatory world we live in, is constantly evolving and making plans based on today, can be a bit like wandering through a maze, which all of us may still feel we are trying to find our way around.

    The question should not be IF we can move our Advice model to something that enables us all to have choices and still be a great contributor to our clients, it should be HOW do I do it, so I can stay in this once great Industry and continue to help people.

    If you want or need to continue, then there is ALWAYS an answer.

  2. Jeremy is correct. But that Westpac case poses some very interesting questions. Essentially Westpac were pinged because they were deemed by the court to have been providing personal advice because they were aware of some of the circumstances and financial positions of the members of the superfunds who were bank customers.

    That’s the bit that bothers me. All risk advisers know their clients inside out. How is it possible to close off one’s mind, and abandon one’s moral position, to ignore the client circumstances and just take in order. It’s not like adding mag wheels to your new car

  3. The Westpac case in summary saw their call centre using info they already had to target the clients and then again use that info to make a recommendation to the client. No doubt giving personal advice. Westpac first denied they took the client’s info into consideration and they won that case, however on appeal by ASIC, making a recommendation is not GA. GA clearly requires you to NOT take the info you have into consideration, demonstrate clearly to the client their info is not taken into account, explain that only GA is given via the GA warning and NEVER making a recommendation. Had Westpac actually followed the GA rules ie followed the law, then they wouldn’t have had a case to answer. GA is not the problem, not following GA rules (in fact flagrantly flouting the rules) was the problem for Westpac.

  4. I agree with the primary discussion… even if you honestly believe that you are not taking your well known clients situation into account, Even if you tell the client you are providing GENERAL advice, the client expects that you know them well enough to to consider their position and suitability when speaking with them about any matters…therefore pretty hard if not impossible to divorce yourself from that knowledge…Even if you could, when it comes to a complaint, the ombudsman and ASIC would side with the client…If you knew something wasn’t in the best interest of your client, would you in good conscience proceed with what they ask, just because they ask… that reflect bad ethics…

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