The FSA is clearly readying itself for change, with the publication of Consultation Paper 12/24 . This Paper proposes a number of amendments to the FSA Handbook with regards to the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) and Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) authorisation and supervision regimes.

Details of just a couple of the proposed changes are given below, although many more are suggested in the Paper:

Amendments to the way firms will be required to apply to vary or cancel its authorisation or permission, or to vary or cancel requirements that are imposed on it by the PRA or FCA: Following legal cutover, dual-regulated firms must apply to the PRA to vary or cancel Part 4A permissions (currently Part IV permissions). FCA-only regulated firms must apply to the FCA to vary or cancel its Part 4A permissions, except where it seeks to vary its permission to include a PRA regulated activity, in which case it must apply to the PRA.

Changes to the way firms will be required to apply for waivers or modifications of rules: The preferred method for submitting applications for a modification or waiver of rules will be via email. Following legal cutover, applications for waivers must no longer be submitted using the Online Notification and Application (ONA) system. Neither the PRA nor the FCA may give direction waiving or modifying a rule unless it is satisfied that the direction would not adversely affect the advancement of the PRA's objectives or the FCA's operational objectives. An additional criterion will also be taken into account by both the PRA and FCA when deciding whether it is appropriate or necessary to publish a waiver. Both regulators will be required to consider whether publication of the waiver would be detrimental to the UK financial system.

Comments on these proposals are welcome until 12 December. The final changes to the FSA Handbook will be made by April 2013.