The SMSF Association is calling for CPD from a professional association to be automatically approved by licensees by under new Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA) rules.
The SMSF Association says FASEA should do this to achieve “consistency, clarity and simplicity”.
“It’s our understanding that the current proposal is for licensees to approve 70% of a financial adviser’s CPD each year,” said SMSFA CEO John Maroney.
“From the Association’s perspective, such a proposal raises legitimate concerns about the extra compliance burden on licensees, potential conflicts of interests between licensees and CPD providers, and incentives for advisers to ‘licensee shop’ for those with a less stringent CPD policy. In addition, the ability for licensees to also be CPD providers and approve their own CPD puts the independence of the system at risk.”
“Having professional association’s CPD recognised as approved for FASEA CPD requirements will mean that the work being done by associations to provide accreditation for CPD material won’t have to be reworked by each individual licensee, a process that which will inevitably lead to red tape and inconsistencies.”
“It also ensures that an independent body is an integral part of the CPD process, which aims to maintain advisers’ knowledge standards and provide ongoing professional development, instead of relying wholly on licensees that may not have the resources or knowledge to appropriately approve CPD for their advisers.”
He went on to say that FASEA’s decision to reduce annual CPD hours from 50 to 40 had the full support of the SMSF Association
“We believe that 40 hours is an appropriate standard to ensure that financial advisers are adequately maintaining and extending their professional capabilities, knowledge and skills.”
FASEA asks for applications to accredit professional designation programs
Meanwhile FASEA has announced that it is inviting industry associations to apply for accreditation of their professional designation programs.
“Existing advisers who have completed approved coursework in relation to approved designations will be entitled to up to two units credit into the graduate diplomas contemplated by the Standards Authority’s new education framework for advisers,” said FASEA.
“Notices have been sent to a number of industry associations informing them of the process to have the course content of their designations approved by FASEA.”