On 11 October 2018, the FCA published a guidance consultation relating to the senior managers’ and certification regime (SMCR). The guidance consultation concerns statements of responsibilities and responsibilities maps for FCA firms.

The guidance sets out the purpose of statement of responsibilities and responsibilities maps, provides some questions for firms to ask themselves and outlines examples of good and poor practice. It is designed to be read alongside the guide for FCA solo-regulated forms as well as applicable rules and guidance in the FCA Handbook.

The FCA states that the guidance should be applied in a risk-based and proportionate way. This includes considering the size, nature and complexity of the firm when deciding whether a certain example of good or poor practice is appropriate to its business.

Other points to note include:

  • the self-assessment key questions and the examples of good and poor practice that the FCA uses in the guidance are not exhaustive;
  • the good practice examples are just some way that firms might comply with applicable rules and requirements of the SM&CR;
  • the examples of poor practice are not exhaustive. Depending on the circumstances, certain poor practices may be sufficient to breach applicable rules; and
  • the example responsibilities maps are provided as examples of how these documents could be constructed based on fictitious firms. They should not in any way be interpreted as guidance on how firms should organise their governance or management arrangements.

The deadline for responding to the guidance consultation is 10 December 2018.