Regulatory Roundup 47 reminded firms of the need to update the status disclosures on their stationery to reflect the move from the FSA to the FCA (and PRA where relevant) – GEN 4 Annex 1 details the required disclosures. To assist firms, and presumably to keep stationery costs under control, a transitional provision (GEN TP 1) meant that firms could continue to refer to ‘FSA’ until 1 April 2014.
Those firms making use of the transitional should be aware that the FCA has had a rethink.
Although the transitional provision still remains, we are advised that it cannot be used where the obligations derive from European law and COBS 5 (Distance communications); 6 (Information about the firm, its services and remuneration); 9 (Suitability) and 13 (Preparing product information) are specifically quoted. The statement by the FCA adds:
“The FCA recognises that it may not have been possible for firms to make all the required status disclosure updates immediately upon Legal Cutover and, as a result, where transitional provisions are not available requires firms to be able to demonstrate that they have plans to make these updates at the earliest practical opportunity”.
Although most firms make a status disclosure in documentation etc., an approach that we would endorse, strictly speaking the regulatory requirement – as opposed to accepted business practice – for disclosure is limited e.g. it only applies to letters (or electronic equivalent) which are sent to retail clients in connection with carrying on a regulated activity; it does not apply to items such as business cards, compliment slips or account statements (unless, for some reason, you are using them as a letter substitute). Further details can be found in GEN 4.3.