ASIC told to justify user-pays fees

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has been urged to justify the fees it intends charging under its new fee-for-service model by publishing detailed data about the make-up of fees.

The Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia (ASFA) has urged greater transparency around ASIC’s new fee regime, especially in circumstances where, in some cases, fees are significantly higher than the current fee regime.

In a submission filed with ASIC this week, ASFA said transparency and accountability were critical features of any industry funding model.

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“With respect to the ASIC fees‐for‐service regime, a robust accountability and transparency framework is required in order to provide ASIC’s regulated population with confidence that fees appropriately reflect regulatory effort,” it said.  

“The superannuation industry is currently facing increased scrutiny, including as a result of the Productivity Commission’s review of efficiency and competitiveness of the superannuation system, and the enhanced disclosure requirements in relation to fees and costs,” the submission said.

“ASFA therefore considers it appropriate that ASIC, and other regulators for the superannuation industry, should be subject to a high degree of scrutiny regarding the levies and fees imposed on the superannuation industry and their utilisation.”

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Not happy to pay but prepared to pay as long as ASIC are subject to the same rules they apply and if they are found to be charging "Fees for No Service" then they should be forced to refund to those advisers who they provide no benefit for.

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