Advisers yet to sit the FASEA exam for the first time have been urged to register for the July session, which ends today, in order to be in with a chance of sitting in 2022.
There were three sessions left in 2021 – July, September and November – but the deadline for July registrations was 25 June, 2020.
Yesterday, the Government announced that candidates who had sat an exam twice and failed both times would be eligible to sit again in 2022.
If a candidate had not yet sat an exam, this meant they would have to sit in July and then, if they failed, could sit for a second time in November. Due to the timing between results being given, it would not be possible for advisers to sit only in September and November.
Joel Ronchi, principal consultant at myintegrity in Practice, said he had seen a “surprising” number of people who were only sitting the exam for the first time this year. This was mainly in areas such as accountancy where people were unaware they fell into the category of needing to take the exam.
“Any help is good help, everyone is trying their best to pass in time. But if you want the certainty of being able to sit it in 2022 then you need to register for July. Try and get through it first time but, if you fail, then you still have two attempts. It is interesting timing for the Government to announce it on this day.”
Gary Weigh, an advice exam tutor, said: “The move will give assurance to those who are struggling to pass and take the pressure off passing by the end of the year. But anyone who hasn’t taken the exam for the first time yet doesn’t know what they are in for.
“Anything is possible now, FASEA had previously been very hard and fast that the end of the year would be the deadline but now they have given this exemption. It is in the Government’s interests not to lose advisers, some people are just struggling with the exam or not used to studying rather than having done anything wrong. Let’s hope this is a lifeline for people.”
Ronchi said advisers who asked for a re-mark of their failed exam should still assume they would need to take the exam again as it could take several weeks to get a response from FASEA which would only leave them for limited revision time before the next sitting.
Both Ronchi and Weigh said their biggest feedback from candidates had been advisers requesting more feedback from FASEA.
“FASEA does post-exam sessions but these only cover the most common feedback, there is nothing one-on-one on how they did specifically,” said Weigh.
Ronchi said: “Speaking to people who have failed, they have said they would appreciate more clarity when they have a re-mark. People want to know if they have failed a certain sector and this would make it easier for them next time as they would know where they needed to do extra study”.