In a constantly evolving financial services sector, our clients are presented with new challenges arising from regulatory change that require additional expertise. Our team has vast experience dealing with a broad range of individual regulatory projects, varying in size and complexity, as well as comprehensive change management requirements.

The industry has seen a huge amount of regulatory change in recent years and, with the coming of the Senior Managers and Certification Regime, there is no let up for most firms. Our team is equipped to help you manage these regulations in a way that is commercially focused and solution oriented. We can implement new processes or improve existing ones to help you to incorporate these changes seamlessly.

Our current areas of focus are:

 

SM&CR

The FCA extended the SM&CR to insurers from 10th December 2018 and will do to solo regulated firms from 9th December 2019, this will replace the existing Approved Persons Regime.

Firms should be planning for the new regulation in good time. To find out more about how we can assist, please click here.

Brexit

Brexit has dominated the news agenda since the referendum in June 2016 and the impact on the financial services industry is still uncertain. With ongoing negotiations, the withdrawal agreement in draft and the deadline approaching, many of our clients have found themselves having to plan for and consider several outcomes. We can assist you to prepare for short term activity and long term for operation within the UK and EU in the following ways:

  • Brexit Impact Assessment,
  • Brexit Risk Assessment,
  • Brexit Planning Options,
  • Business Model Impact,
  • Regulatory Permissions, and
  • UK and EU Regulatory Applications.

Regulatory Reporting and Filing

Our experienced team of dedicated regulatory professionals, including qualified accountants, lawyers and former members of staff at the FCA, provide FCA Prudential Requirements Compliance services to a wide range of firms.  We guide clients through the full spectrum of regulatory prudential requirements.

To find out more about how we can assist, please click here.

Other Projects Include:

 

Compliance Health Check

Sometimes it is necessary to take stock of your compliance infrastructure to ensure it is adequate and meeting the regulators’ expectations. Our health check service ensures that a fresh and experienced pair of eyes assesses and reviews your corporate governance, compliance framework, monitoring arrangements and documentation, following the guidelines set by the Association of Professional Compliance Consultants. We report our findings and recommendations in a format agreed with you, discuss the outcomes with you and agree with you how best to address the necessary actions.

Complaints Handling Procedure Assurance

Regulated financial services firms must have effective and transparent procedures for the reasonable and prompt handing of complaints. The team at Complyport has a wealth of experience in assisting firms review and assess their complaints handing processes and procedures. We can provide a flexible tailored approach appropriate to your requirements providing you with advice and the tools to ensure that your current complaints handling processes and practices are compliant with the standards set by the regulator and to future proof those processes and practices in line with regulatory expectations.

Governance and Culture

Governance Risk and Compliance (“GRC”) is often referred to as the business issues that ought to keep directors and senior managers awake at night as it involves risks to the very essence of the firm. Click here to find out how we can help you with your governance and cultural compliance.

Change in Control and Variation of Permission

After authorisation has been obtained and during the course of a firm’s regulated lifetime, firms may be required to make additional applications to the FCA in specific circumstances. Applications are required to vary a firm’s existing regulatory activities or to request the regulator’s permission for structural changes in the business. Click here to find out how we can help you with regulatory applications.

FCA Visit and Interview Preparation

Ahead of any FCA visit and interview, we can undertake a complete review of your compliance arrangements and conduct training for your staff on what to expect and best approach. Our team have guided numerous clients through this enabling to deal with the regulator appropriately.

Client Assets (CASS) Requirements

The FCA has been clear; they expect senior management to ensure that client money (and assets) are protected. Whilst the burden of work may well fall on the CF10A and those with CASS oversight roles, the FCA requires firms to implement appropriate governance and controls, which will include (on a proportionate basis):

  • identifying how client money or assets come into the business (scoping cash flows, products, accounts used and contractual obligations)
  • processes, procedures, policies (from T&Cs through to appropriate trust accounts and due diligence and compliant reconciliations)
  • controls (checks, clarity of roles and responsibilities, compliance monitoring, ongoing reviews of issues and importantly, MI)
  • board/senior management oversight (ensuring the above is in place and working, competent staff and reviewing MI, reporting lines and support in place)

However, common failings are caused by a lack of clear internal records, with firms instead relying on using information from bank statements to keep a track of client money and carry out internal reconciliations. Firms also underestimate the importance attached to CASS Resolution Packs; updating client account trust letters, terms of business and carrying out simple due diligence on banks where client monies are held.

With emphasis on the ‘three lines of defence’ model (compliance/risk/audit) and direct responsibility resting on senior management to have appropriate governance in place, we understand all parties want reassurance they are following the rules, or assistance in implementing systems and controls. Complyport is well placed to assist because:

  • Our internal expertise comes from former regulators and staff with hands on experience in dealing with CASS issues and relevant accountancy qualifications.
  • We have experience of dealing with FSA/FCA Section 166 cases related to CASS issues and understand the regulator’s expectations.
  • We have a flexible approach and can match our service to meet your requirements. Our service can be a deep dive review, or we can provide assurance to senior management that they are compliant with the requirements (with practical tips to comply if there are identified gaps).

General Data Protection Regulation

On 25th May 2018, the General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) came into effect for all firms operating within Europe as well as firms outside of Europe that have data come in from, go through or end up in the EU. As part of this regulation, individuals will be afforded enhanced rights regarding their data. This imposes additional responsibilities on impacted firms. Click here to see how Complyport can help you comply with the GDPR.

Financial Crime

The changing landscape of financial crime regulation presents new challenges to businesses to guard against being used as a conduit for financial crime. Anti-Money Laundering (AML), Counter Terrorist Financing (CTF) and Market Abuse continue to be a focal point for regulators across the globe and specifically in the UK, Anti-Bribery and Corruption is high on the regulatory agenda. The risks of getting it wrong are great, with breaches being punished severely and publicly.

Complyport has extensive knowledge in helping firms find solutions to these problems. Click here to find out how we can help you with this important area.