ASIC further suspends AFS licence of Halifax Investment Services

ASIC has extended the suspension of the Australian financial services (AFS) licence held by Halifax Investment Services Pty Ltd (Halifax) until 8 January 2021, effective 18 December 2019.

The terms of the suspension allow the Halifax AFS licence to continue in effect for the following purposes only:

(a) to ensure that clients of Halifax continue to have access to an external dispute resolution scheme;

(b) to ensure that Halifax continues to be required to have arrangements for compensating retail clients, including the holding of professional indemnity insurance cover; and

(c) to allow for the termination of existing arrangements with clients of Halifax.

Background

Halifax was a financial services licensee headquartered in Sydney with a partially-owned subsidiary in Auckland, New Zealand.

On 8 January 2019 ASIC suspended the Halifax AFS licence until 10 January 2020 (See 19-005MR).

This followed the appointment of Morgan Kelly, Stewart McCallum and Phil Quinlan, of Ferrier Hodgson as joint voluntary administrators of Halifax on 23 November 2018.

On 20 March 2019 at the second creditors meeting it was resolved to place Halifax into liquidation and the administrators were appointed as liquidators.

Under the Corporations Act, ASIC has the power to suspend or cancel an AFS licence, without holding a hearing, where the AFS licence is held by a body corporate which is placed under external administration or that is being wound up.

The company has a right to seek a review of ASIC’s decision at the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

View ASIC’s dedicated Halifax page for further information.

/Public Release. View in full here.