FCA published a policy statement (PS20/12) that sets out the final rules and summarizes the feedback received to the consultation on extending implementation deadlines for the Certification Regime and Conduct Rules. Following a request from FCA, the Treasury has made a statutory instrument to delay the deadline for solo-regulated firms to have undertaken the first assessment of the fitness and propriety of their Certified staff from December 09, 2020 until March 31, 2021. FCA encourages all firms to meet the original deadline of December 09, 2020 wherever possible. However, solo-regulated firms (except benchmark administrators) must have fully implemented the Certification Regime and Conduct Rules and reported information on Directory Persons by March 31, 2021.
In July 2020, FCA had consulted to change to the same date, the deadline for certification in FCA Handbook. FCA also consulted to give corresponding extensions to the deadline for training staff in the Conduct Rules and reporting Directory Person data. FCA had proposed to extend these deadlines to give firms significantly affected by COVID-19 crisis the time to fully and properly implement the Certification Regime and to train staff effectively in the Conduct Rules. PS20/12 confirms that FCA will extend the deadline for the following requirements correspondingly from December 09, 2020 to March 31, 2021, as consulted on:
- Date the Conduct Rules come into force, for staff who are not senior managers, certification staff, or board directors
- Date by which relevant employees must have received training on the Conduct Rules
- Deadline for submission of information about Directory Persons to the Register
- References in FCA rules to the statutory deadline for assessing certified persons as fit and proper following agreement with the Treasury
These changes affect all FCA solo-regulated firms authorized to provide financial services under the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 and appointed representatives are in scope of the extension to the reporting deadline for Directory Persons. FCA will also extend the implementation deadlines for Claims Management Companies by an equivalent period. The feedback FCA received indicates that most firms will be able to meet the original deadline of December 09, 2020 and FCA encourages them to do so.
Keywords: Europe, UK, Solo Regulated Firms, SM&CR, Operational Risk, COVID-19, Conduct Rules, Certification Regime, Implementation Timeline, FCA
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