After seven months of leading the federal government’s new education standards body, Dr Deen Sanders will be joining a big four partnership.
O’Dwyer’s education official set to join big 4 firm
The Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority (FASEA), which is mid-rollout of its mandatory education standards for financial advice, confirmed Mr Sanders’ departure publicly yesterday. Accountants Daily understands Mr Sanders resigned weeks ago.
Mr Sanders confirmed to Accountants Daily he was offered a role in the Deloitte partnership, to work on new business in the conduct area, including advice transformation and professional standards.
Deloitte has since confirmed Mr Sanders will be conduct partner at the firm.
"Deen’s extensive expertise and passion for professional standards and conduct will considerably strengthen our conduct team," a Deloitte spokesperson said.
Dr Mark Brimble, head of the finance and financial planning division at Griffith University, is acting managing director while FASEA searches for a new CEO.
The departure comes amid substantial backlash from accounting professionals about the incoming education requirements, which will mandate further education for accountants providing financial advice, including those with postgraduate qualifications.
“Generally speaking, accountants who have operated in this area have done it for a long time. Those people with 20-plus years' experience should be recognised as having different credentials to someone that has just got a degree and RG146,” said CA ANZ senior policy adviser, Bronny Speed, late last month.
Accountants are also frustrated that the current guidance does not differentiate between accountants holding a limited versus full AFSL.
Director at Ariel & Associates, Jeremy Danon, fears this could prompt accountants with a limited licence to cease their advice-based services offerings, particularly SMSF advice.
It would be fair for some accountants to put financial advice in the “too hard basket” if they are expected to do the same amount of compulsory training as a professional with a full AFSL, but they are only licensed to provide a small amount of services.
***Editor's note: This piece has been updated to include Deloitte's comments since initial publication***