Rogue Bankers Act is a game-changer, says lawyers’ new financial services group

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Legislation to curb rogue bankers and brokers will be a game changer and the legal profession must prepare for the impact of the new laws according to the chairman of the new Financial Services Bar Association (FSBA).

The FSBA is one of several specialist bar associations aimed at promoting the expertise of lawyers in distinct areas of law and countering the strong tendency of some lawyers to exploit a small group of senior lawyers for business despite expertise wider among members of the profession.

Its chairman, senior counsel John Breslin, said the soon-to-be-released Senior Executives Liability Regime (SEAR) legislation to make directors and officers of banks and financial services firms personally liable for breaches regulation by their firm will be an important priority for lawyers.

The first conference of the FSBA, on November 3 this year, will bring together leading specialist lawyers, lawyers and internal regulators and lawyers to understand the implications of the change.

SEAR aims to make it easier for the Central Bank to initiate administrative sanction procedures against the management of a regulated company, including individual sanctions for decision makers who have acted improperly.

Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe introduced the key bill to put the measures in place to Cabinet earlier this month.

The Central Bank (Individual Accountability Framework) Bill will give regulators more powers to punish individual misconduct.

It will also allow the Central Bank to act against leaders who break the rules even if their companies are not involved.

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