RG146 inadequate training for SMSF practitioners

As the regulator announced its plans to increase adviser training standards, an SMSF Adviser straw poll has indicated that a majority of respondents believe RG146 qualifications are not adequate for providing SMSF-related advice.

In response to the question ‘Are RG146 qualifications adequate for giving SMSF-related advice?’ 82.3 per cent of the 147 respondents voted no. The remaining 17.7 per cent voted yes.

“Having completed the RG146 course and additional SMSF specialist courses, I can say that the RG146 course on its own is not adequate training for giving SMSF-related advice,” said one respondent.

“It is a very specialised area requiring a great deal of technical knowledge. There is also a need to understand the SIS Act and regulations in relation to SMSFs to give correct advice.”

Another respondent noted SMSFs are “complicated legal entities,” indicating knowledge beyond financial planning is necessary for issues related to compliance.

The SMSF Professionals’ Association of Australia (SPAA) has previously told SMSF Adviser that practitioners meeting only RG146 requirements “haven’t actually extended their knowledge enough”.

These results come as the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) outlined its intentions for increased adviser training standards past the current RG146 minimum requirements.

The regulator yesterday released consultation paper 212 (CP212), which proposes to retain the current training standards in RG146 as ‘base level’ standards, and to introduce two further regimes of training. These are proposed to come into effect in 2015 and 2019.

“Training standards play an important role in ensuring that investors and consumers receive quality advice,” said deputy chairman Peter Kell. “ASIC is committed to improving the framework for competency of financial advisers.”

Click here to have your say on SMSF Adviser's latest straw poll. 

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