Elizabeth Anne Parry, of Tewitfield, Carnforth,was fined £104,000 for lying to the FCA about her qualifications and a ban prevents her from acting as a financial adviser.
Miss Parry was authorised in May 2006 as a sole trader to conduct investment and mortgage business and, from January 2015, for consumer credit activities.
Since 2013, retail investment advisers have been required to hold a Statement of Professional Standing (SPS) and achieve the relevant professional qualifications, as part of changes following the Retail Distribution Review.
Miss Parry made six misleading statements to the FCA between January 2013 and September 2015, with the intention of making the FCA believe that she had attained the appropriate qualifications to provide investment advice and that she had engaged in numerous dealings with her professional body, the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII), as to why it had not supplied her with an SPS.
In October 2013, Miss Parry submitted a fabricated document to the FCA, which purported to be an SPS issued by the CII which would remain valid until January 2014.
In May 2014 the FCA asked Miss Parry to verify that she had obtained the appropriate qualifications. Miss Parry then submitted a second fabricated SPS.
Following enquiries by the FCA, in July 2015 the CII informed the FCA that it had no record of Miss Parry applying for, or being issued with, an SPS.It was not until an interview in November 2015 that Miss Parry admitted her misconduct.
Mark Steward, Director of Enforcement and Market Oversight at the FCA said:“We raised the minimum qualification standards in order to p rotect consumers from financial harm, and Miss Parry’s behaviour demonstrates a clear disregard of those standards and her duty to be honest with the FCA.
“We will not tolerate this sort of behaviour.”
Miss Parry ceased to be authorised in November 2015 and has ceased trading.
She provided evidence of serious financial hardship andhad it not been for her financial circumstances, the FCA would have imposed a financial penalty of £157,395 plus interest on Miss Parry.