Alert: Changes to ASIC’s assessment procedures for AFSLs

July 2019

Those considering applying for a new Australian financial services licence (AFSL), or a variation to an existing AFSL, need to take account of the latest changes to ASIC's assessment procedures.

Last week, ASIC released a statement outlining changes to its assessment procedures for AFSL applications. This policy update follows a review by ASIC of its AFSL requirements in December 2018. ASIC has confirmed it now requires additional information and documentation be provided as part of AFSL applications.

These new requirements impact both applications for a new AFSL and applications to vary an existing AFSL.

ASIC now requires the following:

  • For new AFSL applications—a bankruptcy and criminal history check for all "responsible officers" (such as directors and secretaries who will perform duties in connection with the AFSL), which was previously only required to be provided for each nominated "responsible manager", along with a declaration confirming responsible officer and ABN details.
  • For all AFSL applications (including variation applications)—additional statements depending on whether any specific authorisations are sought to be covered by the licence (for example, custody or responsible entity services).

The additional statements were previously only provided to ASIC on request as part of their assessment of an application. Now, depending on the authorisations being sought in the application, a number of additional statements will need to be provided to ASIC at the time of lodgement of the application.

You can read more about the requirement to provide documents for "responsible officers" and the related declaration in a recent edition of Fundamental.

Our Funds Management team can help you understand and comply with these new requirements to avoid unnecessary delays in the application process.

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