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NASAA Seeks More CE Course Feedback, Adopts Whistleblower Act

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Continuing its efforts to create a continuing education program for investment advisor representatives, the North American Securities Administrators Association is conducting a survey on course content.

In February, NASAA sought comments on creating the CE program.

NASAA announced then that its board-level Investment Adviser Representative Continuing Education (IAR CE) Committee developed a framework for a program and was working closely with NASAA’s Investment Adviser Section’s IA Regulatory Policy and Review Project Group to draft a proposed model rule to implement that framework.

NASAA’s proposal includes an annual requirement for IARs to complete 12 total hours of CE — six hours focused on Products and Practice and six hours focused on Ethics and Professional Responsibility.

NASAA is now taking comments until Sept. 21 on potential course content for Investment Adviser Representative CE classes. For instance, one topic would focus on how IARs should disclose and report any conflicts of interest, such as dual registrations, outside business activities and financial industry affiliations.

“NASAA’s Investment Adviser Continuing Education Committee is progressing in its work to create a continuing education program for investment adviser representatives and hopes to present the proposed model rule to the NASAA membership for a vote later this fall,” Bob Webster, spokesman for NASAA, told ThinkAdvisor on Wednesday.

Whistleblower Act

Meanwhile, NASAA has adopted a Model Whistleblower Award and Protection Act allowing state securities regulators to make monetary awards to whistleblowers based on the amount of monetary sanctions collected in any related administrative or judicial action, up to 30% of the amount recovered.

The model act also would protect whistleblower confidentiality, prohibit retaliation by an employer against a whistleblower, and create a cause of action and provide relief for whistleblowers retaliated against by their employer.

The model act draws upon the whistleblower award provisions contained in Section 922 of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010, as well as from current state law in Indiana and Utah.

The Whistleblower Award and Protection Act may be adopted as legislation during state legislative sessions or implemented by regulation.