If elected, the Labor Government will allow financial advisers working for a decade to continue without a university degree.
Addressing the Association of Independently Owned Financial Professionals conference on Wednesday, Labor’s shadow assistance treasurer, Stephen Jones said: “If you’ve been working for a decade as a financial adviser with a good record, a Labor Government will not ask to you take that bachelor’s degree to keep your qualifications.
“We’re going to assume that that 10 years plus experience is worth at least a degree.”
Jones noted advisers would still need to sit the financial adviser exam and comply with the code of ethics.
“But we won’t be asking you to waste your time on degrees you don’t need. We’re going to treat you like professionals,” he said.
“And we’re going clear the way so you can get on with the job of getting valuable advice to people who need it at a cost they can afford.”
Jones said requiring advisers year decades of experience to complete a bachelor’s degree was a waste of public and private resources.
“It is a waste of public and private resources. It is driving the best and wisest heads out of the industry. It’s adding cost and removing valuable time from businesses that would otherwise be healthy,” he said.
“And it’s treating mid-career professionals like undergraduates. We need a system that recognises the wealth of knowledge held by experienced advisers.”
On a Facebook post today, Jones said that the Liberal party had driven the industry to the brink and that Labor would improve access to financial advice to Australians.
Under current rules, financial advisers would need to complete a Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA) approved degree by 2026 to continue working in the sector.