The FCA has launched a consultation paper setting out a number of technical rule changes to the Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SM&CR). The changes are being made as a result of HM Treasury’s announcement in October 2015 that it would be amending the current SM&CR legislation as it applies to the banking sector. This included the repeal of section 64B(5) of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (FSMA), which required firms to report to the FCA known and suspected breaches of the FCA Rules of Conduct, before the SM&CR regime enters into force on 7 March 2016.

The FCA proposes to remove references to notifications of known and suspected rule breaches in the associated forms, thereby streamlining reporting requirements so that the forms only require firms to inform the FCA of disciplinary action taken against staff as a result of a breach of one or more Rules of Conduct. The pre-existing obligation to report material breaches will, however, remain in place.

The Consultation Paper sets out how the FCA intends to implement the consequential changes to rules and forms that will be required prior to commencement of the regime, as well as examining the likely impact the changes will have on the industry and on consumers.