ASIC bans Western Australian adviser for four years

ASIC has banned Kelmscott-based financial adviser Mr Anthony Hilsley from providing financial services for four years.

This follows an ASIC surveillance of Mr Hilsley’s activities when he was an authorised representative of RI Advice Group Pty Ltd, owned at that time by ANZ. Mr Hilsley was most recently an authorised representative of Fiducian Financial Services Pty Ltd.

ASIC found that Mr Hilsley failed to comply with financial services laws, including failing to provide financial advice that was in the best interests of his clients.

A review of Mr Hilsley’s advice files revealed that he did not identify, or make sufficient enquiries into, his clients’ personal circumstances, properly consider his clients’ objectives and needs, and, in some cases, did not consider their existing products when providing personal advice.

For one client, Mr Hilsley recommended replacing superannuation and insurance products without taking the client’s pre-existing medical condition into account. As a result, a loading was added to the premium, which could have been avoided if Mr Hilsley had considered the suitability of the client’s existing products to meet their ongoing insurance needs.

Financial advisers have a legal obligation to act in the best interests of their clients when providing personal advice. This includes taking reasonable steps to understand their clients’ personal circumstances and exploring existing financial products to ensure they are providing appropriate advice that meets their clients’ objectives.

The banning of Mr Hilsley is part of ASIC’s ongoing efforts to improve standards across the financial services industry. It will be recorded on ASIC’s publicly available Financial Advisers Register and the Banned and Disqualified Persons Register.

Mr Hilsley has the right to appeal to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal for a review of ASIC’s decision.

ASIC’s Moneysmart website has useful information for consumers about choosing a financial adviser, how to complain about a financial adviser and what to do if their adviser is banned.

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