ASIC consultation on independence disclosure and advice fee consents

ASIC has issued a consultation paper titled Implementing the Royal Commission recommendations: Advice fee consents and independence disclosure.

This paper seeks feedback on:

  • draft legislative instruments that deal with advice fee consents and independence disclosure; and
  • a proposal to issue more guidance in Regulatory Guide 245 Fee Disclosure Statements (RG 245) to help industry meet obligations around ongoing fee arrangements, including renewal notices and fee disclosure statements.

NIBA CEO Dallas Booth said, “We are looking closely at this paper in consultation with our legal adviser. At this point all we can say is that the legislative instruments that deal with independence disclosure apply closely to general insurance brokers. But we are giving this paper a great deal of attention.”

The paper also seeks feedback on additional issues relating to ongoing fee arrangements, including renewal notices and fee disclosure statements. The regulator is proposing to update RG 245 in mid-2020. To offer more clarity and certainty to industry, the updated guidance will address the key areas of non-compliance identified in Report 636 Compliance with the fee disclosure statement and renewal notice obligations.

ASIC Commissioner Danielle Press said, “The Government proposes to introduce legislation implementing the Royal Commission recommendations from 1 July 2020. We are consulting on our proposals now to help provide certainty to industry as it prepares for the new requirements.”

The regulator is seeking public input by 7 April 2020 and welcomes views not only from industry but from all interested stakeholders. “This will help us understand any concerns that consumers, firms and trustees may have about our proposals,” added Press.