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  • UK Conduct Regulator Consults on Extending Certification and Conduct Rules Implementation Deadlines

    Following the announcement of the extension for solo-regulated firms of the deadline for completion of firms' first assessments of the fitness and propriety of their Certified Persons from December 9, 2020, to March 31, 2021, the U.K. Financial Conduct Authority has opened a consultation on extending certain other implementation deadlines for the Certification Regime and Conduct Rules. The extension of the deadline for firms' first fitness and propriety assessments was agreed to by HM Treasury in light of the continuing impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

    The FCA is consulting to ensure that the Certification Regime and Conduct Rule implementation deadlines run in parallel to that change and to give firms the time needed to make the changes. The consultation closes on August 14, 2020. The FCA is proposing to extend the following deadlines from December 9, 2020, to March 31, 2021:
    • the date the Conduct Rules come into force for staff that are not Senior Managers or Certification Staff;
    • the date by which relevant employees must receive training on the Conduct Rules;
    • the deadline for submission of information about Directory Persons to the FS Register; and
    • changing references in the rules to the deadline for assessing Certified Persons as fit and proper.

    Firms that are able to certify staff and submit information for the FS Register before March 31, 2021 should do so.

    The FCA is not proposing to change the deadline by which firms need to complete Conduct Rule breach reporting as most firms will submit their first annual report in October 2021, however, firms will only need to report on breaches that occur on or after March 31, 2021.

    The proposals are relevant to all FCA solo-regulated firms. Appointed Representatives would also be able to use the proposed extension to the reporting deadline for Directory Persons. These proposals do not apply to benchmark administrators as their implementation deadlines are later than those for FCA solo-regulated firms.

    The FCA intends to publish the final policy statement on an expedited basis. However, the timing may be impacted by the legislative timeline to formally implement the overall deadline.

    View the FCA's consultation paper.

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