EDUCATION IN FINANCIAL ADVICE

Becoming a licenced financial planner or tax financial adviser


To undertake a career providing advice that could influence a client’s decision to purchase a financial product, you’ll need to have the appropriate licences.

That means:

• You’ll need to be licenced appropriately in accordance with ASIC – that is, you’ll either need to hold your own Australian Financial Services (AFS) licence, as granted by ASIC, or be an authorised representative under another entity’s AFS licence;

• And it’s likely that you’ll also need to be registered as a tax financial adviser. Tax advice provided in the context of financial planning advice is also regulated, but by the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB). And given that tax financial advice is commonly provided when providing financial planning advice, the majority of licensed financial planners will also hold this registration.

The steps you need to take will largely depend on your prior education.



If you’re aiming to become a CPA and pursue these additional licences you’ll need to make certain choices in your education to equip you to:

1

Satisfy the requirements of the CPA Program

2

Meet the tax financial adviser education requirements; and


3

Meet the ASIC education requirements

Correct

Satisfy the requirements of the CPA Program

In addition to the four compulsory subjects, you will need to complete two elective subjects to satisfy the education requirement of the CPA Program.

Your elective choices depend on your prior learning.

Taxation

If you have undergraduate studies in Taxation you are not required to complete Advanced Taxation as a compulsory elective. You are welcome to choose it as an elective to expand your taxation knowledge and expertise.

If you are required to compulsory complete Advanced Taxation in the CPA Program, you may have a choice of one remaining elective from the elective subjects offered.

Audit

If you have undergraduate studies in audit you are not required to complete Advanced Audit and Assurance as a compulsory elective. You are welcome to choose it as an elective to expand your knowledge and expertise in audit.

If you enrol at any time and do not have undergraduate studies in audit you are required to complete Advanced Audit and Assurance as a compulsory elective leaving a choice of one remaining elective from the elective subjects offered.

Financial planning electives in the CPA Program

There are three Financial Planning electives in the CPA Program. Having completed an Australian taxation undergraduate subject you may choose from these electives according to your interest and the number of available elective choices you have.

Financial Planning Fundamentals is the initial subject of the three financial planning electives and is required to be completed before enrolment in either of the remaining two subjects.

Either Superannuation and Retirement Planning or Investments may be chosen as a second financial planning elective through the CPA Program.

Any of the three financial planning subjects available in the CPA Program, as well as the fourth financial planning subject available outside the CPA Program, can be accessed by existing CPAs who wish to gain knowledge and expertise in financial planning and potentially pursue a career as a financial planner.
Correct

Meet the tax financial adviser education requirements

To meet the requirements of the TPB for a tax financial adviser you will need to have completed an undergraduate unit in taxation and commercial law.

The TPB website contains a list of approved undergraduate units in taxation and commercial law. It is advised that you check this list and use the TPB online decision tool to confirm the status of your undergraduate units. CPA Australia will provide a TPB approved unit in taxation and in commercial law to support you to meet these requirements if needed. Please contact us for further information.
Correct

Meet the ASIC education requirements

Completion of the four CPA Australia financial planning subjects will meet the current ASIC requirements as set out in RG 146.


This information is indicative only. Further information will be required to confirm your individual circumstances.