January 10, 2020

Assessing the limits and regulatory definitions of financial advice

October 2020

Purpose of this report

The challenges facing superannuation funds seeking to design and deliver financial guidance and advice to their members are considerable.

The provision of financial advice in super comes with a complex set of overlapping regulations addressing adviser conduct, conflicts, the scope of advice, fees and charging, disclosure, and an obligation to provide advice that is in the member’s best interest.

These are overlaid by new professional and ethical standards, in place from 1 January 2020, which do not appear to have been drafted with advice in super in mind. For the superannuation trustee, it can be opaque and confusing.

So, what to do? In our view, the first thing is to be clear about what is possible.

It is evident that anyone designing an advice service should start by identifying member needs. Solutions must be directed at meeting those needs and delivering the best possible member experience, commensurate with the commercial realities of delivering a personalised service at scale.

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