If you're an authorised retailer, following FCA guidelines is a normal part of your business. As well as your obligations to the consumer, you have a number of obligations to the FCA. In their recent March roundup, the FCA issued a reminder to firms to complete their mandatory attestations.
In addition to the regulatory returns that firms submit via RegData, they are also required to complete two mandatory attestations. This means the FCA requires authorised retailers to 'attest' to or verify that the details which have been provided are correct.
What are the Mandatory Attestations?
This is the basic information that the FCA hold about your firm and is published on the Financial Services Register. This information must be kept up to date and it is your responsibility as an AR to ensure it's current and correct.
Most firms are subject to FCA regulatory reporting requirements*, and this means you must check, amend, and acknowledge the firm details are correct annually. Failure to do so could in a fine or enforcement action by the FCA.
Full details on your Firm Details requirement can be found here.
*To view full reporting requirements, see this link
As part of the Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SM&CR), the Financial Services Register contains a directory of certified and assessed person. This is published and maintained by the FCA. This allows consumers and professionals to check the details of key people working in financial services.
It is important firms ensure their details are correct on this register so clients and potential clients can contact the right people in your business. The FCA see the register as somewhat of a 'Shop Window' for consumers, with over 7.5 million people consulting the directory every year.
For full information on how and when to update your Directory Persons details, see the FCA website.
Where can I submit my company information?
Both of these attestations can be completed on Connect, the FCA user management system for submitting notifications and applications.
What if I am a Solo-regulated firm?
The FCA had issued a deadline of 31 March 2021 to complete Directory Persons' data for solo-regulated firms. Those who have not done this must submit the relevant information following the certification and assessment of individuals within their firm.