RE Update: FSB Grants Exemption

The Regulator published the following explanatory note on Board Notice 65 of 2013, which was in the Government Gazette on Tuesday. It concerns an exemption granted to applicants who applied for an exemption from completing the regulatory exams by 31 March 2013.

The Financial Services Board (FSB) has set 30 April 2013 as the date by which financial services providers (FSPs), key individuals and representatives who have not successfully completed the relevant Level 1 regulatory examination by 31 March 2013, may apply to continue rendering financial services until their exemption applications are processed, and the Registrar has either granted or refused the applications (“the Dispensation”).

It is important to note that the Dispensation referred to above will only apply to those persons who have:
(a) Written the relevant regulatory examination at least once before 30 June 2012;
(b) Submitted, on or before 30 April 2013, to the Registrar an application for exemption; and
(c) Paid the prescribed fee or have applied for exemption from having to pay the prescribed fee.

Therefore, the Dispensation would only apply to a person who complies with ALL the requirements detailed in paragraphs (a) to (c) above.

The Dispensation is called the ‘Exemption from Level 1 Regulatory Examination until finalisation of Application for Exemption, 2013’, and it has been published by Board Notice 65 of 2013 in Government Gazette No. 36399 of 23 April 2013. The detailed notice is available on the FSB website,

The Registrar regarded it as necessary to grant the Dispensation in view of the fact that a multitude of exemption applications have been received, some of which remain unprocessed at this stage, which, in the absence of the Dispensation would mean that a large number of FSPs, key individuals and representatives would be regarded as not being fit and proper and, therefore, not be able to continue rendering financial services, irrespective of whether or not they have submitted an application requesting an extension of the examination deadline.

The Dispensation is further only valid pending the outcome of an applicant’s exemption application. In other words, the Dispensation expires when the applicant’s exemption application is granted or refused by the Registrar.

You can download Board Notice 65 of 2013 here.

Please do not regard this as an excuse to delay writing the regulatory exams. Our advice is that you spend all your time and energy, while waiting to hear if your request was granted, on making sure that you actually do pass the exam. Then the outcome of your request for an exemption will actually be immaterial, not so?

The FSB have requested that all enquiries in this regard be addressed to them. Details are provided in the guidelines on how to apply, below.

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