Rules of engagement for financial advisers

How a financial advice provider (FAP) engages an adviser

Under the new regulatory regime, every financial adviser (FA) is required to be engaged by (or ‘linked to’) a financial advice provider (FAP).

An FA must be linked to a FAP within 3 months of either their registration date or from adding the financial advice service to their registration. All authorised financial advisers (AFAs) and registered financial advisers (RFAs) that were migrated to the new regime as financial advisers must be linked to a FAP within 3 months of the commencement date of the new regime (no later than 16 June 2021). If this does not happen, the FSP may be deregistered or, if the FSP offers other financial services, will have to remove the financial advice service.

How a FAP engages (links to) an individual FSP (financial adviser)

It is the responsibility of the financial adviser to ensure that the financial advice provider (FAP) records details of the engagement on the FSPR. 

A FAP can only link to an individual FSP who is registered and offers the ‘financial advice’ service. To do this, the FAP will need the FA’s name and FSP number. 

Before a FAP can link to a financial adviser on the FSPR, they will need to have:

  • a RealMe® login
  • an online services account with the FSPR
  • authority to update records on behalf of the financial advice provider.

The FAP must then follow these steps:

  1. Log in to your online services account using your RealMe ID and password, and locate your registration in the ‘FSP Registrations’ tab of your dashboard.
  2. On the ‘View FSP details’ screen, select the ‘Financial Services’ tab and click the ‘Maintain Financial Services’ button.
  3. Scroll down to the ‘Financial advice service’ where you’ll see the FAs, if any, that you’re linked to.
  4. Click the ‘Add Financial Adviser’ button and search for the FA you wish to engage, using their FSP number or name. Indicate whether or not they will be covered by your dispute resolution scheme (DRS).
  5. Repeat step 4 above for each new financial adviser you add. Please note, if you are linked to multiple advisers, they are listed alphabetically.
  6. When you’ve finished updating your registration, click on ‘Next Step: Declaration’.  Review and confirm the declaration.
  7. Click on ‘Next Step: Review’. Review the information you have entered and tick the check, box to confirm the information is true and accurate.
  8. Click on the ‘Submit’ button at the bottom right of the screen.
  9. Viewing the FAPs financial services, you’ll see that the FAs now appear on the ‘Financial Services’ tab.
  10. The FA’s ‘Financial Services’ tab will show the FAP they are engaged by (linked to). They will also receive an email advising them that they’ve been linked to your licence.
Link to a financial adviser
New Zealand Companies Office

Choosing a dispute resolution scheme (DRS)

If you are a financial adviser offering the financial advice service on behalf of a FAP, you’ll need to agree whose DRS you will operate under – a scheme provided by the FAP, or your own.

Whatever agreement you reach, you’ll need to make sure that you have a clear and comprehensive process to resolve any disputes that may arise, and that your clients understand which DRS they should use if they require assistance.

Removing a financial adviser

The process for removing a financial adviser is much the same as for linking. The FAP must do the following:

  1. Log in to your online services account using your RealMe ID and password, and on your dashboard select your FAP from the ‘Registrations’ tab.
  2. On the ‘View FSP details’ screen, select the ‘Financial Services’ tab and click the ‘Maintain Financial Services’ button.
  3. Scroll down to the ‘Financial Advice Service’. You’ll see the financial advisers that you’re currently linked to.
  4. To remove a financial adviser, click the ‘remove’ button below, and to the right of their details.
  5. Tick the declaration, review and click ‘Submit’.

The financial adviser will be immediately removed from your licence, and will receive an email informing them that they are no longer covered under your licence.

Once a financial adviser is removed from a FAP’s licence, they have 90 days to link to another FAP. They will not be legally able to offer the financial advice service until they have done so.

If not engaged again within 90 days, we’ll begin the process of deregistering the financial adviser.

All help topics

Getting started on the register 4 guides

A new financial advice regime came into effect on 15 March 2021 which also brought about changes to the Financial Service Providers Register.

Registering a financial service provider (FSP) 9 guides

Dispute resolution schemes (DRSs) 2 guides

If you provide financial services to retail clients, you must join a DRS within 10 working days of registering and keep your membership details up to date on the Financial Service Providers Register (FSPR).

Providing licensed or certified services 5 guides

Filing an annual confirmation 3 guides

To remain registered as a financial service provider (FSP) you must confirm your FSP's details and services each year. Find out how to file your confirmation online, or to change the month you do it

Managing your registration as a financial service provider (FSP) 6 guides

Deregistration and reregistration 3 guides

You can voluntarily deregister a financial service provider (FSP), or it may be deregistered by the Registrar. In some circumstances you can object to a deregistration, or apply to have the FSP reregistered.

Paying fees and levies 3 guides

If you're a financial service provider (FSP), you pay fees for some transactions, including registration. You also pay levies to the Financial Markets Authority (FMA). There are several ways to pay.

Managing your online services account 6 guides

Your FSPR online services account allows you to keep your FSP's contact and payment details up to date. From your account dashboard you can view and manage outstanding applications and tasks.