Page last updated: 22 January 2024

Financial Institution licensing

Any registered bank, licensed insurer, or licensed non-bank deposit taker in the business of providing one or more relevant services will need to hold a financial institution licence to continue operating, if that service is received by a consumer in New Zealand.  

This means a financial institution that is in New Zealand but only provides relevant services or associated products to consumers outside New Zealand will not need to hold or operate under a financial institution licence. 

Do you have a question or concern about CoFI? Talk to us

Financial Institution licensing is now open

The CoFI Act requires financial institutions to be licensed to continue providing relevant services to consumers. Before you apply for a licence, we recommend you follow the following 8 steps:

STEP 1: Decide if you need to apply for a financial insititution licence
Registered banks, licensed insurers and licensed non-bank deposit takers need to determine if they will require a financial institution licence.

STEP 2: See what questions we'll ask
Get familiar with the financial institution licence application guide and review the application questions. 

STEP 3: Prepare your fair conduct programme
You will need to have established your fair conduct programme (FCP) prior to applying for a financial institution licence.

STEP 4: Get the basic admin done
Log in to the FSPR on the Companies Office website and select the “Financial Institution - licensed” service. You’ll need to do this at least 24 hours before you start your draft application online.

STEP 5: Log in to the application portal

STEP 6: Start your draft application
We won’t see any of your answers until you press SUBMIT. Complete as much as you can, then save a draft and come back and finish the job when you’re ready.

STEP 7: Seek further help if you need it.
Your success is important to us. Please get in touch if you have questions on the licencing process. Contact the FMA or talk to your professional advisers about what might be helpful for you.

STEP 8: Press submit!
Congratulations on finishing your application. We’ll be in touch soon to advise the outcome.

Download the 8-steps to apply for a financial institutions licence PDF

Licensing costs

The basic licensing fee payable to apply for a financial institution licence is $1,024.93 (incl. GST). 

We may charge an additional fee where the time to assess a licence application exceeds 6.75 hours, as set by the Financial Markets Conduct (Fees) Regulations 2014. For an FMA staff member this is set at $178.25 per hour, or part-hour pro rata, of work carried out.  Please refer to the regulations for further information.

If an additional fee will be incurred for your application, we will notify you in advance, including the reason why. 

The fee for each authorised body included in the financial institution licence is $614.95.

Applications to vary conditions on an existing licence will incur an application fee of $115 plus $178.25 per hour, or part-hour pro rata, of work carried out.

Please refer to the Financial Markets Conduct (Fees) Regulations 2014 for more information.

All amounts are GST inclusive. 

This payment is to apply for a financial institution licence; it does not include any annual levies, or fees to register on the Financial Service Providers Register