Depending upon the breach committed, the consequences can be severe including a permanent ban. The Australian Securities and Investments Commissions (ASIC) recently banned an adviser for engaging in dishonest and deceptive conduct:
ASIC permanently bans Victorian man from providing financial services
ASIC has permanently banned a former insurance broker from providing financial services.
Between August 2009 and July 2010, Alan Charstone, of Croydon South in Victoria, was an authorised representative of Insurance Advisernet Australia Pty Ltd (IAA).
ASIC’s investigation found Mr Charstone engaged in dishonest and deceptive conduct between August 2009 and July 2010 in relation to business and personal insurance. Specifically, Mr Charstone failed to place adequate insurance cover for clients and misappropriated client funds.
According to an initial report prepared by IAA, the conduct involved 54 clients and cost IAA a total of $58,803.68 to reinstate and/or place insurance cover for each client.
ASIC banned Mr Charstone after finding that he had not complied with financial services laws and that there was reason to believe he would not comply with financial services law in the future.
‘It’s important brokers in the insurance industry act with honesty and integrity as they are entrusted to help consumers and small businesses make important financial decisions. Having no insurance cover or inadequate insurance cover can have a devastating impact on consumers or small businesses if something goes wrong’, ASIC Commissioner, Peter Kell, said.
IAA, which cooperated with ASIC during the investigation, has recovered $9,000 from Mr Charstone. Mr Charstone has agreed to repay to IAA, among other costs, the amount of $12,489.51 on account of funds misappropriated by him and as a contribution towards restitution owing to IAA.
ASIC commenced an investigation after it received a breach notification from IAA.
Mr Charstone has the right to appeal to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal for a review of ASIC’s decision.
Source: Media release by ASIC (http://www.asic.gov.au)
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