The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has cancelled the Australian financial services (AFS) of Austplan effective from 25 November due to concerns around the firm’s ability to ensure that advice provided was compliant.
The regulator stressed that its surveillance found “deficiencies in the financial services provided by a number of Austplan representatives, including their failure to act in the best interest of their clients in relation to establishing self-managed superannuation funds (SMSF)”.
Following this, Austplan would be required to comply with conditions such as maintaining its current professional indemnity insurance policy until the cancellation takes effect and its membership of Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) until all consumer complaints were resolved.
Additionally, the company would have to submit the required financial statements with ASIC and retain all materials relating to personal advice provided by its representatives.
ASIC’s deputy chair, Peter Kell, said: “AFS licensees have an obligation to ensure that their representatives are adequately trained and competent to provide financial services that are in their clients’ best interest”.
“ASIC will take action where we see licensees not properly supervising their representatives.”