Time for your adviser to get qualified
The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has published proposals for changes to their existing training and competence regime. Part of their proposals include a 30 month deadline for new financial advisers to meet the required qualification standards.
The Consultation Paper (10/12) looks at raising standards of professionalism through qualification reform, the application of more consistent standards for Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and ethical behaviour.
This new deadline will mean that advisers who entered the retail financial services sector from 30th June 2009 will have a maximum of 30 months from the end of this year to reach the new qualification level.
Existing advisers will need to reach the QCF Level 4 qualification level no later than the end of 2012.
This is the first time that the FSA has reviewed competence requirements for financial advisers since 2007, and a lot has happened in the world of financial services since then.
The Consultation Paper goes on to suggest that examination standards should be updated once every three years. This raises the possibility that Chartered Financial Planner status could become the minimum qualification level required for all financial advisers by the end of 2015.
The consultation period closes on 6th September 2010 and then final rules on this subject, in the form of a Policy Statement, will be published by the end of this year.
Here at Informed Choice we welcome the moves to introduce reasonable deadlines to achieve the necessary level of tested competence through professional qualifications. Consumers of financial services and products should be confident that their adviser has not only the relevant experience required to deliver advice but had tested their knowledge through sufficiently tough examinations.