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Former Australian Unity adviser banned

A former authorised representative of Australian Unity Personal Financial Services was handed a five-year ban for telling clients MySuper options are more expensive and to opt out of the products.

Christopher Chan will serve a five-year ban for writing misleading and deceptive emails to some clients in 2016 when the Stronger Super reforms were being implemented. ASIC surveillance found Chan advised clients to opt out of transitioning to a MySuper product, claiming the fees associated were higher than those being charged by their existing super fund.

As a result, some members chose not to fully transfer their super balances and continued paying higher fees.

Chan also failed to disclose the emails to his licensee and ASIC at the outset of the regulator's investigation, which ran between 2017 and 2018. Throughout the investigation, Chan continued to be authorised by Australian Unity Personal Financial Services, the licensee he joined in July 2016 and departed in April 2019. From April 2019 Chan was licensed by Infocus before finishing up in September of last year.

Prior to Australian Unity, Chan was an authorised representative of Grant Thornton Wealth Advisory from October 2008 to July 2016.

In reaching its decision, ASIC said Chan prioritised his company receiving commissions over the interests of his clients. It also said he is not competently trained to provide advice and that he is likely to break financial services laws again in future.

Read more: Australian UnityMySuperASICChristopher ChanGrant Thornton Wealth AdvisoryInfocusStronger Super