Can any lawyers out there confirm if the following is correct?
- "Advice" only requires an AFSL (and SOA) if it contains a recommendation about a financial product (i.e. purchasing, selling or varying a specific financial product) or a recommendation about a sub-set of a product category listed in reg 7.1.33A (see below)
- "General advice" requires an AFSL if it is designed to influence the reader towards a particular financial product or sub-set of the Reg 7.1.33A categories
- "Personal advice" does not require an AFSL (or SOA) unless it contains a recommendation about a financial product as above. But maybe other laws kick in?
- Property is not a financial product but if its held in a financial product (i.e. an SMSF) then the above financial product rules do still apply.
- A trust is not a financial product.
- You don't need an AFSL (or SOA) to make recommendations about the allocation of a client's assets across the categories in Reg. 7.1.33A (being: shares, debentures, government bonds, cash, managed investments, foreign passport funds, investment life insurance products, superannuation)
- Providing factual information that is objectively ascertainable (e.g. via external resources) does not require an AFSL (or SOA)
- Budgeting, and modelling/projecting scenarios (that respect the above rules) doesn't require an AFSL (or SOA)
If the above is all correct then it seems to open the door for genuinely honest, fee-only financial advisers to drop their AFSLs and therefore radically reduce the fees they have to charge mum and dad clients. When it comes to selecting a specific product just hand the client a copy of that Barefoot book, or have a referral arrangement in place with someone still licensed.
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