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AAT upholds ASIC’s decision to ban SMSF adviser

The Administrative Appeals Tribunal (AAT) has affirmed ASIC’s decision to ban an adviser for five years for failing to meet the best interest obligations when providing SMSF advice.

SMSF Miranda Brownlee 11 November 2020
— 1 minute read

In December 2019, ASIC banned Wayne Blazejczyk for failure to meet best interests obligations when providing advice on SMSFs.

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Surveillance of advice by the corporate regulator found that Mr Blazejczyk had recommended that his clients set up SMSFs with low superannuation balances when he was an authorised representative, responsible manager and director of Australian financial services licensee Ballast Financial Management Pty Ltd.

According to ASIC, as a result of this advice, Mr Blazejczyk exposed his clients to financial harm because the ongoing SMSF costs were higher than the costs of their existing superannuation fund.

Mr Blazejczyk sought a review of the scope of ASIC’s banning order. He considered that the order should be limited to only prohibiting him from providing personal advice to retail clients, ASIC said in a public statement.

“Mr Blazejczyk did not contest ASIC’s findings that he had breached a financial services law and conceded that a five-year banning period was appropriate,” the corporate regulator said.

The AAT was not satisfied that a limited banning order of the type proposed by Mr Blazejczyk would provide sufficient general deterrence.

“It was also not satisfied that the proposed limited banning order would promote consumer confidence and professionalism in the financial services industry,” ASIC said.

“In addition, the AAT was not satisfied that a permissive banning order, which would allow Mr Blazejczyk to engage in specific financial services activities, would be adequate to promote the protective objectives of the licensing regime.”

AAT upholds ASIC’s decision to ban SMSF adviser
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