From 1 April 2014, firms involved in Consumer Credit regulated activities were brought under the supervision of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) through the interim permission regime. However, that is just the start of the transfer process. By now the FCA will have written to all firms giving them their “landing date”, which is a three month period in which they must submit their application for full authorisation to the FCA. If they do not do so, they will have to cease all consumer credit regulated activities.
Now is the time when firms should be preparing for FCA regulation and ensuring that they meet the “threshold conditions”. Are you cleared for FCA landing?
What does this mean for your firm?
You will need to:
- Identify what level of permission you require depending on the nature of your firm’s activities, either full permission or limited permission;
- Gather the requisite information in order to plan your application.
- Begin preparations on your regulatory business plan;
- Begin preparing staff organisational charts, compliance manuals and compliance monitoring arrangements;
- Identify those who will become “approved persons” because they perform “controlled functions” and compile evidence of their competence;
- Compile contacts for auditors and professional advisors; and
- Consider the ways in which your firm will manage risks from money laundering or market abuse.
Through the above information, firms will have to demonstrate to the FCA that they meet its minimum requirements – the threshold conditions. Firms must show that they adhere to the FCA’s principles for business, that they have appropriate systems and controls in place to manage risk and that they comply with the FCA’s rules and guidance in the consumer credit sourcebook as relevant to them. If they do not, they will have to cease all regulated activities when their interim permission expires, which is immediately after the “landing slot” expires.
Now is the time to begin preparations. Don’t leave it until the last minute, why not give Ian Norman a call on 01844 268348 or 07796 850223 to discuss how we can help.