News Details

12 May, 2011

IFAs - Notification of Competence

From July 2011, all firms with CF30 retail investment advisers will be required to notify the FSA about any  competence and ethics issues that arise with those advisers.

What does the FSA need to know?

Any change of circumstance that the FSA are likely to be interested in including where the adviser :

  • is no longer considered competent;
  • failed to attain an appropriate qualification within the prescribed time limit;
  • failed to comply with a Statement of Principle (APER); or
  • performed an activity without demonstrating competence and without supervision.

If an adviser has breached any of these requirements, your firm must complete a notification form and email it to

What don't I have to report to the FSA?

Judgement is required here - for example where an issue may be put right almost instantly by the firm and where there is no risk to consumers, or where there is no suggestion of serious competence issues. For example, failing an internal assessment that was part of an ongoing training programme.

Why are the FSA suddenly  interested? 

The subject of ethics and competence is crucial to delivering a high quality service to customers. Firms are already obliged to monitor their advisers, and should continue to do so. 

These new notification requirements will enable the FSA to build up a profile on each individual adviser. 

The Competence notification form may be found at

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