Design and distribution obligations update

The design and distribution obligations for financial product issuers and distributors were scheduled to commence on 5 April 2021.  As a result of COVID-19, the commencement date has been postponed 6 months until 5 October 2021.

The 6 month deferral was made by ASIC in the ASIC Corporations (Deferral of Design and Distribution Obligations) Instrument 2020/486.

We’ve written an article summarising the design and distribution obligations. It was first published this month in the June 2020 issue of Governance Directions, the official journal of Governance Institute of Australia, and you can read it here.

The deferred commencement date may seem a long way off, but you will see from our article that the time required to get ready should not be underestimated.

Earlier this week ASIC issued a revised timetable of its ongoing work. ASIC says in the updated timetable:

We plan to publish regulatory guidance on product design and distribution obligations in Q3 2020, responding to industry requests for guidance to be finalised as soon as possible.

We look forward to seeing ASIC’s guidance sometime in July, August or September.

Patrick Dwyer and Kathleen Harris
Legal Directors

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