One big four firm has outlined specific strategies ASIC may use to monitor the compliance of licensed and unlicensed accountants, including directly questioning clients and investigating dealership arrangements.
ASIC to scrutinise dealership arrangements under licensing regime
Deloitte Private partner John Randall said ASIC will be teaming up with the ATO and accessing information in relation to new funds being set up, and whom they are being set up by.
“The ATO has to be advised every time a new fund is set up so that it has the ABN, and there will be a sharing of that information with ASIC,” said Mr Randall.
“ASIC can use that information to send out a questionnaire to trustees and may also be able to tie [funds] together by tax agency or address to identify what accounting firms are promoting the establishment of funds or suggesting the fund be set up,” he said.
The questionnaire sent to clients, he said, would ask questions such as what advice they received in relation to setting up a fund and what their investment strategy was.
Mr Randall said ASIC will also be looking closely at dealership arrangements, in terms of the rigour with which the advice is being provided and the processes in place.
“Particularly with the licence-holder, they’ll be monitoring what they’re doing, what training they are providing or requiring to be undertaken by the various accountants who are coming under their licence,” he said.
“There’s a lot that ASIC can do. It depends on where the consumer protection is required most, because it is all about the individual being protected to some extent from going into arrangements that aren’t appropriate for them, or losing money.”