Relevant experience for tax (financial) advisers
You must have enough relevant experience in providing tax (financial) advice services to register or renew your registration as an individual tax (financial) adviser.
What is considered relevant experience
Relevant experience can include work:
- as a registered tax agent or tax (financial) adviser
- under the supervision and control of a registered tax agent or tax (financial) adviser
- of another kind approved by the Board.
Your relevant experience must include ‘substantial involvement’ in:
- one or more types of tax (financial) advice services, or
- a particular area of taxation law to which one or more of those types of tax (financial) advice services relate.
‘Substantial involvement’ means ample or considerable involvement. It requires more than simply being involved from time to time in the provision of one or more types of tax (financial) advice services. For example, this could include regular and frequent involvement in the taxation aspects relating to statements of advice.
Work of another kind
Work of another kind can include the experience you gained:
- prior to 1 July 2014 that may have required you to register with the TPB as a tax agent but for the various carve outs that existed from 1 March 2010 to 30 June 2014
- prior to the commencement of the tax agent services regime in March 2010 if you had provided tax advice in the context of financial advice
- during the notification period (1 July 2014 to 31 December 2015) provided you used the relevant disclaimer.
We may accept other types of relevant experience depending on the circumstances.
It may also include the completion of simulated programs designed to be a substitute for work experience. We will consider whether the completion of a simulated program can count towards your overall relevant experience on a case-by-case basis. The amount of relevant experience that we will accept from simulated programs is limited to 15% of the overall relevant experience hours requirement.
We will assess if an individual has met the relevant experience requirement on a case-by-case basis. For more information about the above types of relevant experience, refer to our information sheet TPB(I) 24/2015 Relevant experience for tax (financial) advisers
Amount of relevant experience required
The amount of relevant experience required for registration or renewal depends on your educational qualifications and the relevant Regulation item in the Tax Agent Services Regulations 2009, as summarised below.
|Regulation Item||Educational qualification (if any)||Amount of relevant experience|
|301||Tertiary qualification||Equivalent of 12 months full-time in the preceding 5 years|
|302||Diploma or higher award||Equivalent of 18 months full-time in the preceding 5 years|
|303||Work experience||Equivalent of 3 years full-time in the preceding 5 years|
|304||Membership of professional association||Equivalent of 6 years full-time in the preceding 8 years|
Demonstrating relevant experience for a new registration
You must complete a Statement of relevant experience – tax (financial) advisers (SRE) to demonstrate your relevant experience. The SRE is available in the online application form.
Experience through work under supervision
If you are relying on experience gained under the supervision and control of a registered tax agent or tax (financial) adviser, they must verify the information you have provided in the SRE and comment on your ability to provide tax (financial) advice services to a competent standard.
If you gained your relevant experience for the required period working under various employers or supervisors, you must complete one SRE for each employer or supervisor.
We will consider whether the supervision and control exercised by the registered tax practitioner/s of your work was adequate for you to meet our relevant experience requirements. There are a range of factors we consider in determining whether adequate supervisory arrangements exist in a practice and these are outlined in Supervision and control – tax (financial) advisers.
Alternatively, you can provide us with a statutory declaration detailing the tax (financial) advice services provided, including the reasons you are unable to provide an appropriately signed SRE. You must also provide independent verification of your experience.
Experience through work of another kind
If your experience includes 'work of another kind', you must explain in your SRE the reasons why this should be approved as 'relevant experience' and provide independent verification of your experience.
Completing the SRE
The online application form requires you to enter your relevant experience details, including:
- position start and end dates
- employer details
- details of services you provided
- supervising tax agent details.
Once you enter these details, you can download the SRE as a PDF, pre-populated with the information you entered. This download will contain a separate SRE PDF for each supervising agent or position entered.
Independent verification may include a reference from:
- an Australian financial services (AFS) licensee or authorised representative
- a registered tax agent or tax (financial) adviser
- an employer (current or former)
- two of your colleagues or clients.
These individuals must be able to comment on your ability, type and amount of experience.The independent verification must also include details such as:
- the full name of the referee and their relationship to you
- the start and end dates of the period being verified
- the product areas on which you provided tax advice
- whether your role included direct client contact
- comments about your competency in providing tax (financial) advice service.
Independent verification must not be provided by family members.
If a supervising registered tax (financial) adviser or tax agent refused to verify an applicant's relevant experience, the Board may consider the supervising agent's act as a breach of the Code of Professional Conduct.
Demonstrating relevant experience when renewing a standard registration
You do not have to complete a SRE to demonstrate your relevant experience when renewing your standard registration. However, in the online renewal form you must confirm you meet the required relevant experience to renew your registration.
Last modified: 11 October 2021