Recognised tax (financial) adviser association – eligibility criteria
Professional associations may be accredited by us as a recognised tax (financial) adviser association if they apply for recognition and meet certain requirements in the Tax Agent Services Regulations 2009 (TASR).
To maintain its recognition, an association must ensure it continues to satisfy these requirements on an ongoing basis.
Applying for recognition
To apply for recognition, you will need to address all of the requirements to become a recognised tax (financial) adviser association as set out below.
Please use the Application for accreditation as a recognised tax (financial) adviser association form.
Requirements to become a recognised tax (financial) adviser association
We must recognise an organisation as a recognised tax (financial) adviser association, if an organisation applies for recognition and meets all of the following requirements:
- it is a non-profit organisation
- it has adequate corporate governance and operational procedures to ensure that:
- it is properly managed
- its internal rules are enforced
- it has professional and ethical standards for its voting members, including terms to the effect that:
- voting members must undertake an appropriate number of hours of continuing professional education each year (having regard to the circumstances and requirements of the members)
- voting members must be of good fame, integrity and character
- each voting member is subject to rules controlling the member’s conduct in the practice of the member’s profession
- each voting member is subject to discipline for breaches of those rules
- if a voting member is permitted by that organisation to be in public practice, the voting member has professional indemnity insurance.
Note: the appropriate number of hours of education each year may differ for members who have particular qualifications, areas of expertise or professional experience.
- it has satisfactory arrangements in place (such as placing relevant and accessible content on the organisation’s website) for:
- notifying clients of its members, or of members of its member bodies, about how to make complaints
- receiving, hearing and deciding those complaints
- taking disciplinary action if complaints are justified
- it has satisfactory arrangements in place (such as placing relevant and accessible content on the organisation’s website) for publishing annual statistics about:
- the kinds and frequency of complaints made to the organisation (except complaints under the Tax Agent Services Act 2009 (TASA) about entities registered under the TASA)
- findings made as a result of the complaints
- action taken as a result of those findings
- it is able to pay its debts as they fall due
- the management of the organisation:
- is required to be accountable to its members
- is required to abide by the corporate governance and operational procedures of the organisation
- it has at least 1,000 voting members, of which at least 500 are registered tax (financial) advisers
- it has each of its voting members comply with at least one of the following:
a) member has been awarded a degree or a post-graduate award in a relevant discipline (including finance, financial planning, commerce, economics, business, tax, accountancy, or law) from either an:
- Australian tertiary institution, or
- an equivalent institution
b) member has been awarded a diploma or higher award in in a relevant discipline (including finance, financial planning, commerce, economics, business, tax, accountancy, or law) from either:
- a registered training organisation, or
- an equivalent institution
c) the member has the equivalent of six years of full-time experience in providing tax (financial) advice services in the past eight years.
- An organisation is taken to have arrangements that comply with requirements 3, 4 or 5 above if the organisation or its members are subject to a state or territory law, or a rule or other instrument created by or under a state or territory law, that set out requirements that are the same as, or have a similar effect to, these requirements.
- If requirement 8 or 9 is not met, we may still decide to recognise the organisation. In doing so, we must have regard to the:
- purpose of the TASA
- the role of recognised tax (financial) adviser associations under the TASR.
After lodging an application
We will write to the organisation as soon as the decision is made to either grant or reject the application for recognition.
If the application is rejected, we will include reasons for the decision. If an organisation is not satisfied with our decision, it may apply to have the decision reviewed by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.
If the application is granted, we will include the details of the organisation on the list of recognised professional associations
To remain accredited as a TPB recognised tax (financial) adviser association, the association must ensure that the eligibility requirements associated with accreditation continue to be satisfied on an ongoing basis. For guidance on demonstrating that the requirements are being met (including examples) refer to Ongoing eligibility requirements for recognised tax (financial) adviser associations.
Terminating recognition of an association
We may terminate the recognition of a recognised tax (financial) adviser association if:
- the association has not given us written notice as required (in relation to notifying us where they cease to meet a requirement for recognition that applies to the association, or in response to a relevant written request from us), or
- we have reasonable grounds for believing the association has ceased to meet the requirements for recognition for the association, and we are not satisfied that it is appropriate for the association to be recognised having regard to the purpose of the TASA and the role of recognised tax (financial) adviser associations under the TASR.
If we believe that a recognised tax (financial) adviser association has ceased to meet a requirement for recognition and its recognition should be terminated, we will write to the association explaining our reasons and invite a written submission (within a specified time) from the association about why the association’s recognition should not be terminated.
In considering whether to terminate the association’s recognition, we will have regard to any submission made by the association. If we decide to terminate an association's recognition, we will write to the organisation (providing reasons for the decision) and include details of the termination on the list of recognised professional associations
If an organisation is not satisfied with our decision, it may apply to have the decision reviewed by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.