Ian R. Taylor commenced as Chair of the Tax Practitioners Board in January 2013 and was reappointed in December 2015 for a further three years.
Do you know that in addition to being licensed or authorised with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC), you must also be registered with the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB) if you provide financial advice that includes tax advice for a fee or reward?
While ASIC regulates financial services, the TPB regulates those who provide tax advice, even if that tax advice is in the context of a financial service. The TPB does this by registering and regulating tax (financial) advisers and enforcing the Tax Agent Services Act 2009 (TASA), which includes a legislated Code of Professional Conduct (Code).
If you are offering tax (financial) advice you must be registered with the TPB as a tax (financial) adviser in order to provide this service legally. This applies to:
Australian financial services (AFS) licensees
authorised representatives (ARs)
– individual ARs
– corporate authorised representatives (CAR) – where an AR operates through a CAR structure, both will need to be registered
employee representatives who may be required to be registered for the purpose of a company or partnership having a sufficient number of registered individuals – being registered tax (financial) advisers or tax agents.
It is a breach of the civil penalty provisions contained in TASA for any entity (including individuals, companies and partnerships) to provide tax (financial) advice services for a fee or other reward, or to advertise that you will provide these services, unless you are registered with the TPB.
If you are a financial planner or adviser and have not yet registered with the TPB, you currently have two options available to register as a tax (financial) adviser:
transitional registration (only available until 30 June 2017); or
To register under the transitional option you only need to have sufficient experience to be able to provide tax (financial) advice services to a competent standard, which is generally the equivalent of 18 months or longer of full-time experience.
From 1 July 2017, all new registrations and renewals will need to meet the standard registration requirements. Standard registration requirements include:
individuals meeting qualifications and experience requirements; and
companies and partnerships meeting the sufficient number requirement.
If you are an AFS licensee or CAR you need to be aware that if you rely on other representatives (including employee representatives) to meet the sufficient number requirement, these representatives need to be registered before you can renew.
Go to the TPB website for more information about registering as a tax (financial) adviser – tpb.gov.au
You are registered: Are you ready to renew?
It’s an important year for those of you who notified to register with the Tax Practitioners Board as a tax (financial) adviser before 1 January 2016. Your registration expires in the period from July 2017 to January 2018 and you will need to renew your registration at least 30 days before it expires.
As an authorised representative, you must renew your registration directly with the TPB unless your AFS licensee advises that you are being included in a bulk renewal process. Apply to renew your registration by completing an online application.
If you are registered but unsure when your registration is due for renewal, you can check My Profile on the TPB website for your renewal date.
An invitation to renew a registration will be sent about 60 days before your current registration expires, to the latest contact details the TPB has on record for you. Renewal applications must be lodged at least 30 days before the registration expiry.
Once your fully completed renewal application is lodged, you remain registered until such time as the TPB makes a decision to approve or reject your application.
Your contact details
If you are already registered, it is a requirement of your registration to provide the TPB with your latest contact details, which means you will receive important TPB updates and also meet your registration requirements.
To review your contact information on the TPB website, check My Profile. You must also update your business and service address details held by ASIC. Allow up to seven days for details you have given ASIC to appear on the Tax Practitioners Board system.
What should you do next?
At the TPB, we are working to build a range of resources to help support you and your practice as a tax (financial) adviser. These include:
renewal kit for individual tax (financial) advisers;
renewal kit for company and partnership tax (financial) advisers; and
webinars for potential and registered tax (financial) advisers.
Ian R. Taylor is Chair of the Tax Practitioners Board.
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