SmartRIA Compliance Alert
The New York State Department of Law (the “Department”) recently adopted new regulations that went into effect on February 1, 2021. These new regulations govern the registration and examination requirements for investment adviser representatives domiciled in New York, or doing business with New York clients. Previously, New York did not require registration of state and SEC investment adviser representatives. The Department is allowing for an implementation period for current New York domiciled representatives to apply for registration by August 31, 2021. New investment adviser applications will require the registration of one or more investment adviser representatives at the time of application.
Registration Fees
The fees for initial and annual renewal registrations are $200 for each person and must be paid through CRD/IARD.
State Registered Investment Adviser and Solicitor personnel:
All principals, supervisors and investment adviser representatives of any investment adviser registered with New York before February 1, 2021 should have already satisfied the preexisting examination and/or waiver requirements. Compliance with examination requirements was documented through a manual process using the form NY-IAQ.
Persons associated with firms registered on IARD before February 1, 2021 who previously received an approval or waiver through an NY-IAQ submission with your current firm should:
  1. Submit a Form U4 requesting RA registration in New York by August 31, 2021 and pay the required $200 fee through CRD.
  2. Send an email to [email protected] with your name and CRD number in the header. You will receive an automatic acknowledgement email response. However, questions will not be responded to through this email address. If the Department’s records reflect prior approval through the NY-IAQ process, your application will be approved through CRD. If no such prior approval exists, your application will remain deficient.
Persons who did not receive an approval or waiver through a NY-IAQ submission with their current firm should submit a Form U4 requesting RA registration in New York by August 31, 2021 and pay the required $200 fee through CRD.  You will then need to send an email to [email protected] with your name and CRD number in the header. Your email should explain the duties you performed for the investment adviser prior to February 1, 2021 and the reason you did not previously submit a form NY-IAQ to the Department. If you were previously denied a waiver by the Department and did not subsequently meet the examination requirements in effect at the time of such denial your request for any exam waiver will not be reconsidered. If you have not met the exam requirements and do not qualify for a waiver, you must pass the required exams before your application for registration can be approved. You will have until December 2, 2021 to pass the required exam(s) – Series 65 or both the Series 7 and Series 66.
Federally Covered Investment Adviser personnel:
All persons meeting the definition Federal of an investment adviser representative must register through Form U4 in New York.
  • Submit a Form U4 requesting registration in New York by August 31, 2021. Pay the required $200 fee through CRD. If you have not met the exam requirements (Series 65 or both the Series 7 and Series 66) and do not qualify for a waiver, you must pass the required exams before your application for registration can be approved.
  • You may be eligible for a waiver if you have been continuously registered to provide investment advice in any jurisdiction for a period of at least two (2) years prior to the date of filing for registration, have not had any lapse in registration exceeding two (2) years; and are not currently nor in the past ten years subject to any regulatory or civil action, proceeding or arbitration that would require disclosure on Form U4.
If you do not qualify for a waiver because you have been the subject of a regulatory action, arbitration or other proceeding, you are required to pass an examination.
Persons seeking an exam waiver should wait until February 27, 2021 to apply in order to avoid opening an unnecessary exam window and being charged an exam fee. Beginning February 27, 2021, FINRA will temporarily modify CRD for NY only U4 registration requests to allow the applicants who qualify for an exam waiver to avoid opening a window.
Exam Requirements
Every investment adviser representative must take and receive a passing grade within two (2) years prior to the date of filing for registration either:
(1)   the Uniform Investment Adviser Law Examination (Series 65 examination); or
(2)   the Securities Industry Essentials Examination, the General Securities Representative Examination (Series 7 examination) and the Uniform Combined State Law Examination (Series 66 examination).
The examination requirement may be waived for any natural person who currently holds one of the following professional designations and is in good standing:
(1)   Certified Financial Planner (CFP) awarded by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc.;
(2)   Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) awarded by the American College, Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania;
(3)   Personal Financial Specialist (PFS) awarded by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants;
(4)   Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) awarded by the Association for Investment Management Research; or
(5)   Chartered Investment Counselor (CIC) awarded by the Investment Adviser Association.
Special Waiver
If you do not qualify for an ‘exam’ waiver, you may apply to the Department for a special waiver. The Department will evaluate and approve through the Form U4 submission in CRD/IARD. All requests for specials waivers must be submitted directly to the Department on the Form NY-IASW at the time of submission of the Form U4, unless otherwise directed by the Department.
Also see the February 8, 2021 Guidance published by the NY Department of Law HERE, and HERE.
Please contact your consultant for help with registering your firm and/or individuals where required in New York.
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