ASIC has suspended the Australian financial services (AFS) licence of Queensland-based financial services provider Financial Options Pty Ltd (Financial Options) until 26 February 2020.
The licence was suspended because ASIC was concerned that Financial Options was not meeting its obligations as an AFS licensee.
Financial Options did not lodge its accounts and audit report for the year ending 30 June 2018, failed to have a dispute resolution system in place, and did not maintain organisational competence or the resources required to provide the financial services covered by its licence. Upon receiving a notice of hearing from ASIC, Financial Options applied for membership with the Australian Financial Complaints Authority (AFCA) scheme, which took effect from 31 May 2019.
The suspension period will allow Financial Options to lodge its outstanding financial reports and do all things necessary to address ASIC’s outstanding concerns in relation to financial reporting obligations, organisational competence, human resources and compliance requirements. ASIC will consider cancelling the licence if Financial Options cannot demonstrate that it is able to comply with the obligations at the end of the suspension period.
ASIC expects AFS licensees to do all things necessary to meet their obligations under financial services law, comply with their licence conditions and ensure that they are able to provide financial services efficiently, honestly and fairly.
The suspension of Financial Option’s AFS licence is part of ASIC’s ongoing efforts to improve standards across the financial services industry.
Financial Options has held AFS licence no. 246287 since 1 March 2004.
Financial Options may apply to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal for a review of ASIC’s decision.