1. Compliance
  2. Financial advice
  3. Types of financial advisers

Types of financial advisers

Page last updated: 22 Feb 2019

All financial advisers must comply with the requirements of the Financial Advisers Act 2008 (FA Act). This includes disclosure obligations which are set out in regulations.

Financial advisers are people who give advice about investing and other financial services and products as part of their job or business. They include financial planners, mortgage and insurance brokers and people working for insurance companies, banks and building societies that provide advice about money, financial products and investing.

The compliance requirements for financial advisers depend on the type of services you provide. If you are an individual, you can use our flowchart to work what type of financial adviser you are.

Authorised financial advisers (AFAs)

AFAs can provide the same services as an RFA, but can also provide services for category 1 products, and can provide an investment planning service.

Find out more about AFAs

Registered Financial Advisers (RFAs)

RFAs are individuals and they can give financial advice for a category 2 product. They can also provide class advice to retail clients and financial adviser services to wholesale clients.

Find out more about registering and your obligations

Qualifying Financial Entity Advisers (QFEs)

A QFE Adviser is an employee or a nominated representative of a qualifying financial entity.

Find out more about QFE advisers and what they can sell

Other businesses providing financial adviser services

Other (non-QFE) businesses providing financial adviser services have to be registered as a financial service provider. They may only provide personalised services to retail clients through an individual who is appropriately authorised or registered.

Find out more about registering


A broker is an individual or a company that receives, holds, pays or transfers client money or property acting as an intermediary for a client. All brokers need to be registered and must also comply with the brokers' conduct and disclosure obligations in the FA Act. These provisions apply to anyone providing broking services, whether they are a financial adviser or not. 

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