FASEA exam to go online

The Financial Adviser Standards and Ethics Authority has cancelled the scheduled April adviser exam, with advisers set to take it online as the COVID-19 pandemic rolls on.

FASEA has been forced to cancel its April face-to-face exams.

Recognising the difficulties posed by the current circumstances, FASEA has opted to instead offer advisers two solutions. Those registered for the April exam can either sit the exam online, or they can defer it until June or another later sitting.

FASEA said it was taking the measure in light of "the evolving COVID-19 pandemic and in the best interest of all people involved in the exam".

The agency said exam provider ACER would directly advise April FASEA candidates of their options.

"FASEA continues to receive and act upon the advice of the Federal Government Health Department and to monitor updates from relevant Australian and international health agencies," FASEA said.

FASEA said advisers had also enquired about their CPD requirements, given the disruption posed by the virus, claiming many events that advisers were relying on for CPD points.

The agency said it recognised the challenges presented by the virus, saying it understood the delivery of face to face CPD offerings "may be difficult". As a result, FASEA said it was encouraging licensees to take a "supportive" approach to compliance.

"In the current extraordinary circumstance licenses will no doubt be reviewing and, where appropriate, adjusting their CPD policy to include appropriate provisions," FASEA said.

The agency said it understood advisers were being offered "effective solutions" by licensee CPD programs, which contain online learning as part of a led or conducted CPD program.

"Video conferencing and/or webinar technology options are appropriate alternatives to face to face offerings," FASEA said.

"Licensee CPD policies are required to include potential relief provisions to assist the needs of advisers affected by extenuating circumstances (including medical).

"Advisers affected in this way should consider contacting their licensee to determine the most appropriate approach to their individual position."

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