AFSA Practitioner Inspections
You may be aware that AFSA has been reviewing its regulatory practices and procedures in an effort to reduce unnecessary regulatory burden on practitioners.
One result of this review has been a change in AFSA's approach to its preparation for the annual inspection program. Rather than seeking practitioners to respond to a long list of questions about their systems and controls AFSA will now seek responses to only a few questions with the remainder and majority of the information provided in the form of documentary evidence of systems and controls in place to meet regulatory obligations. This can be provided by way of copies of policies, procedures, checklists etc. AFSA expects that this will reduce the time taken for practitioners to respond to its queries and will give a better insight into a practitioner’s compliance processes for their inspectors. AFSA's inspectors will review this documentation and will provide feedback to practitioners on any areas of concern.
It is envisaged that not all practitioners will have comprehensive written documentation, particularly sole traders, so a written response from the practitioner explaining how their systems and controls meet particular obligations can still be provided instead (as is the case now).
This approach is being adopted from mid November 2016 onwards for Registered Trustee inspections.
AFSA has issued an email to Practitioners advising of this slight change in approach.