Banking and Finance Point-in-Time Service Updates

Tuesday 16 February 2021 @ 4.01 p.m.

The Banking and Finance Point-in-Time Service has been updated to include the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2020 (Cth) (Act 133 of 2020), Financial Sector Reform (Hayne Royal Commission Response) Act 2020 (Cth) (Act 135 of 2020), the Treasury Laws Amendment (2020 Measures No. 6) Act 2020 (Cth) (Act 141 of 2020), and the Territories Legislation Amendment Act 2020 (Cth) (Act 154 of 2020).

 Act 133 of 2020

This Act contains a range of measures to strengthen Australia’s capabilities to address money laundering and terrorism financing risks, and generate regulatory efficiencies, including amendments, which:

  • expand the circumstances in which reporting entities may rely on customer identification and verification procedures undertaken by a third party
  • explicitly prohibit reporting entities from providing a designated service if customer identification procedures cannot be performed
  • strengthen protections on correspondent banking by prohibiting financial institutions from entering into a correspondent banking relationship with another financial institution that permits its accounts to be used by a shell bank
  • provide a simplified and flexible framework for the use and disclosure of financial intelligence
  • create a single reporting requirement for the cross-border movement of monetary instruments
  • address barriers to the successful prosecution of money laundering offences by clarifying that the existence of one Commonwealth constitutional connector is sufficient to establish an instrument of crime offence, and deeming money or property provided by undercover law enforcement as part of a controlled operation to be the proceeds of crime for the purposes of prosecution.

Act 135 of 2020

This Act implements a significant number of recommendations of the Financial Services Royal Commission and additional commitments the Government has made to improve consumer protections and strengthen financial regulators. The amendments address conflicts between the interests of financial institutions and their customers, ensure consumers are treated fairly in their dealings with the financial sector, and ensure regulators have the powers and resources needed to be effective in their enforcement and supervision roles.

Some key amendments of the Act aim to:

  • Enhance the existing voluntary code of conduct framework to allow ASIC to designate enforceable code provisions in approved codes of conduct
  • Implement an industry-wide deferred sales model for the sale of add-on insurance products and introduce of a cap on the commission to be pain in relation to add-on risk products
  • Introduce a ban on the hawking of financial products
  • Clarify and strengthen breach reporting for Australian service licensees and introduce a comparable regime for Australian credit licensees

Act 141 of 2020

Schedule 1 to this Act amends the temporary full expensing and backing business investment provisions in the income tax law to provide greater flexibility for entities to access the concessions. Schedule 1 to the Act also makes other clarifications to the operation of the temporary full expensing and temporary loss carry back provisions.

Schedule 2 to the Act amends the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth) by reallocating the responsibility for conducting sectoral assessments and making consumer data rules. Schedule 3 to the Act amends the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission Act 2012 (Cth) to incentivise basic religious charities that may be responsible for past institutional child sexual abuse to join the Redress Scheme.

Schedule 4 to the Act makes a number of minor and technical amendments to various laws in the Treasury portfolio. These amendments make minor and technical changes to correct typographical and numbering errors, bring provisions in line with modern drafting conventions, repeal inoperative provisions, remove administrative inefficiencies, address unintended outcomes and update references, ensuring Treasury laws improve to operate as intended.

Act 154 of 2020

This Act amend the National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009 (Cth), National Consumer Credit Protection (Transitional and Consequential) Provisions Act 2009 (Cth), associated Treasury Acts, and various other Acts to fully extend their application to the external territories and ensure all Australian companies operate under the same legislative framework.

These amendments have been updated in the Point-in-Time Banking and Finance Service current to 15 February 2021. (NB: Subscription required).

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