The clear indication by the FSB that it has no intention of extending the final date for passing the regulatory examinations has caused quite a flurry in the industry. Coupled with the recently released statistics on the percentage of representatives who still have to write the REs, there is indeed reason for concern. However, we have seen a marked increase in the number of registrations over the last month or two.
Will representatives currently in service, but unable to pass. the REs by the final date, be able to work under supervision? If so, what are the conditions applicable to such an exemption?
For those who were banking on this as a possible loophole, the answer is unfortunately NO.
Board Notice 106 of 2008 details the Fit & Proper requirements for appointment as a representative of which the passing of the Regulatory Exams is but one such a requirement. The Board Notice provides for specific timelines depending on the representative’s “date of appointment”, in other words, the first date on which a representative was appointed by any financial services provider to render financial services in relations to a specific Category or subcategory.
In terms of Board Notice 104 of 2008 (the Supervision Board Notice), an exemption is extended to representatives who do not yet meet the prescribed experience, qualification and/or regulatory examination requirements to work under supervision until such time as they satisfy these requirements. The first level RE supervision requirement is however qualified in that “a representative rendering services under supervision must obtain the first level RE as it applies to the Category or subcategory appointed for, within two years of appointment as a representative. The respective periods ends on 31 December of the year in which the second year falls.” Failure to do so means that you will not be able to stay in the industry.
From this it is evident that your date of appointment in relation to satisfying the first level RE requirement is paramount, regardless of whether you are rendering financial services under supervision or not.
To summarise, representatives appointed on or after 1 January 2010, and who are working under supervision, are required to complete the relevant first level RE’s within two years from date of first appointment (with the deadline falling on 31 December of the year in which the second year falls), whilst individuals who were appointed prior to 1 January 2010 will need to adhere to the June deadline as per the extension provided for in Board Notice 61 of 2012. Please keep in mind that “appointed” in this context means your first appointment as a representative with any past FSPs.
Our advice is that one should rather confront the regulatory exams, than try and find a way around it. Speak to successful candidates and find out what has worked for them. You are more likely to get good advice from them.
Read the FSB’s preparation guide/voorbereidingsgids which is available for free on our RE website page. It contains valuable exam tips which will definitely give you a head start.
A more detailed version is available in English and Afrikaans on DVD. It does not contain study material, just practical advice on matters such as preparation and the composition of the question paper. Approaching the exam correctly can make a big difference in your results.
Please click here for details on how to obtain a copy of the DVD.
Good luck. Many have passed already, and so can you. Do what the boy scout motto says – be prepared.