ASIC has commenced Federal Court proceedings against Westpac in relation to alleged poor financial advice in relation to one of its advisers.

In four sample client files, the adviser:
• breached the best interests duty under the Corporations Act (the Act);
• provided inappropriate financial advice; and
• failed to prioritise the interests of clients.

Notably, this adviser’s conduct was not discussed in the recent hearings of the Royal Commission.

ASIC has brought proceedings against Westpac for a breach of:

• the best interests duty under section 961K of the Act;
• Westpac’s general licence obligations to:

  • do all things necessary to ensure that the financial services covered by its licence are provided efficiently, honestly and fairly under ss912A(1)(a); and
  • comply with financial services laws under ss 912A(1)(c).

Westpac has a significant remediation program underway in relation to this adviser’s conduct.

As at 14 June 2018, $12 million has been paid to clients affected by the poor advice and ongoing advice service failures.

The proceeding is listed for a directions hearing in Sydney on 19 July 2018 at 9:30am.

For more detail see ASIC commences civil penalty proceedings against Westpac for poor financial advice.


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