Checklist released for SMSF firms as November deadline approaches
SMSF firms that hold their own AFS licence will need to make certain preparations to ensure they have properly transitioned from their existing external dispute body to AFCA by 1 November.
The Fold Legal associate Chris Deeble said that by now, all financial services licensees should have joined the Australian Financial Complaints Authority, which will replace the Financial Ombudsman Service and the Credits and Investments Ombudsman.
Mr Deeble said firms should be careful not to overlook the additional work required to effectively transition from their existing external dispute body to AFCA by 1 November 2018.
One of the most important things they need to do is update any documents and website material that refer to AFCA, he said.
“Any documents or information on your website that refers to CIO, FOS or the SCT need to be updated,” he explained.
He also noted that any disclosure documents including financial services guides and product disclosure guides that refer to FOS or CIO also need to be updated by 1 July 2019.
Complaints information on a firm’s website, complaints policy or in brochures can give details of FOS/CIO/SCT from 21 September to 31 October 2018, but must be updated with AFCA’s details by 1 November.
“Internal dispute resolution delay and final response letters must refer to both FOS/CIO/SCT and AFCA from 21 September 2018 to 31 October 2018. By 1 February 2019, these letters must only refer to AFCA,” said Mr Deeble.
Firms also need to notify their AFCA membership details to ASIC.
“You should have been a member of AFCA by 21 September 2018. You will be able to notify ASIC about your membership between 1 and 30 November 2018,” he said.