A joint paper compiled by consultancy firm Licensing for Accountants and law firm Holley Nethercote stated that the ASIC funding model is based on the number of people included in the financial adviser register, which assumes that each person requires a similar amount of regulation.
“Limited licensing, by its very nature, is limited because those that provide financial services under their limited licence are also accountants with many other roles,” the paper explained.
Often an accountant will only spend 5 per cent of their time providing financial services under their limited licence, it said, with the remaining time spent providing tax advice.
“The funding model seems unfair for the majority of accountants who operate in this way. Instead, a ‘per office’ and usage metric should be factored into the funding model,” the paper said.
It also proposed that advisers who are subject to investigation by ASIC should be compelled to fund the costs of the investigation, such as in the NSG case, pursuant to s91 of the ASIC Act 2001 and INFO SHEET 204.
“Any such payment should reduce the overall cost that is used to calculate the per-adviser cost at the end of each financial year,” the paper stated.