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ASIC extends COVID relief for advisers

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A temporary measure to enable financial advisers to provide consumers with affordable services during the pandemic crisis has been extended by six months to April 15 next year.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) announced last week that the extension reflects the continuing uncertain impacts of COVID-19 on the industry.

The measure, one of three initiatives unveiled in April, aims to help advisers support clients. They can forgo preparing the required statement of advice, subject to certain conditions, for clients who need guidance on early access to super funds.

ASIC says it will continue to monitor the appropriateness of the temporary action in light of the impacts of COVID-19 on demand for financial advice.

“If ASIC considers it appropriate to end the relief before the expiration dates or to further extend it, ASIC will give sufficient notice before any early repeal or extension is implemented,” the regulator says.

One of the other measures allowing super trustees to temporarily expand the scope of personal advice that may be provided has also been extended, to December 31. This will align with the extension of the COVID-19 early release of superannuation scheme.

Click here for more details on ASIC relief measures.