FCA disciplinary and other enforcement action against firms
FCA disciplinary and other enforcement action against firms

The following Corporate Crime guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • FCA disciplinary and other enforcement action against firms
  • Own initiative variation of permission (OIVOP)
  • Public censure
  • Financial penalty
  • Suspension of (or imposition of limitations/restrictions on) permission to carry on regulated activities
  • Warning notices and decision notices
  • Other enforcement powers
  • Private warnings

The Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (FSMA 2000) provides the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) with a wide variety of possible actions against firms, which are summarised in this Practice Note. These include both disciplinary sanctions (such as financial penalties, public censure and suspension of (or restrictions on) permissions) and certain other enforcement tools (such as OIVoPs and private warnings).

Own initiative variation of permission (OIVOP)

Under FSMA 2000, s 55J, the FCA may, on its own initiative, vary or cancel a firm's permission. This power is known as its 'own initiative variation power' and can be used by either the FCA's supervisory function or its enforcement function.

The FCA may exercise this power in relation to an authorised firm if it appears to the FCA that:

  1. the firm is failing, or is likely to fail, to satisfy the Threshold Conditions (COND in the FCA Handbook)

  2. it has failed, during a period of at least 12 months, to carry on a regulated activity to which its permission relates

  3. it is desirable to exercise the power in order to advance one or more of the FCA's operational objectives, or

  4. the firm has failed to comply with a requirement in Part 5 of the Alternative Investment Fund Managers Regulations 2013 (SI 2013/1773), or it is for some other reason desirable to exercise