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Ontario regulator launches consumer tool to verify financial adviser credentials

TORONTO — Ontario's financial services regulator is making it easier for consumers to verify the credentials of financial advisers and financial planners.

The Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario it is launching a new webpage where people can type in the name of their financial professional and verify their qualifications, see if they're in good standing and whether they've had disciplinary action taken against them.

Huston Loke, FSRA's executive vice-president of market conduct, says people are entrusting their life savings to financial professionals and they expect their adviser is properly trained and supervised.

The financial planner and adviser titles signify the professional has met minimum education standards and abide by the set code of conduct.

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However, research by FSRA suggests consumers may not be spending enough time looking for a qualified financial adviser and verifying their credentials.

In 2022, the Ontario government approved new rules on who can use the financial planner and financial adviser titles to protect consumers from working with unqualified people.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 1, 2024.

The Canadian Press