The new shorter PDS regime is now mandatory for superannuation products (other than ‘risk-only’ superannuation products), simple managed investment schemes and margin lending facilities. Relief from the new regime is available for superannuation platforms, multi-funds and hedge funds (and funds of hedge funds) until 22 June 2013, pending further consideration by the Government.

The Corporations Amendment Regulations 2010 (No 5) established a new shorter product disclosure statement (PDS) regime for superannuation products (other than ‘risk-only’ superannuation products), simple managed investment schemes and margin lending facilities. The new regime requires a PDS to be a maximum of 8 A4 pages and to comply with certain heading and content requirements.

The new regime commenced fully on 22 June 2012, although issuers of new products have been required to comply with the regime since 22 June 2011 and other product issuers have been able to voluntarily opt-in.

In response to feedback received from industry, ASIC has released a new information sheet entitled Shorter PDSs: Complying with requirements for superannuation products and simple managed investment schemes (INFO 155) which generally explains the shorter PDS requirements and provides guidance on certain specific topics including incorporation by reference, page length, additional information, ‘white label’ products, employer PDSs, insurance information and standard risk measure.

Following consultation with industry, ASIC has also provided some interim relief in Class Order [CO 12/749]. The Class Order excludes superannuation platforms, multifunds and hedge funds (and funds of hedge funds) from the shorter PDS regime on an interim basis until 22 June 2013 pending further investigation by the Government into whether such products should be subject to the new shorter PDS regime.

Issuers of superannuation platforms and multifunds may however choose to opt in to the shorter PDS regime. Responsible entities of hedge funds or fund of hedge funds may not opt in to the shorter PDS regime but may, where they have already issued a shorter PDS before 18 June 2012, continue using the shorter PDS until 31 January 2013.

See INFO 155, INFO 133 and ASIC’s media release.

See Class Order [CO 12/749] and its explanatory statement.