Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Annual FINRA User Entitlement Certification

Friday, January 3, 2014

FINRA Bank Change - February 2014

FINRA issued a reminder notice on January 2, 2014 that they will be changing the bank used to process payments. Please see our original notification in November 2013.

A copy of the notice is below.

AdvisorAssist strongly encourages advisors to use the new E-Bill funding account instead of mailing and wiring money. We often encounter issues with FINRA mistakes with these manual payment processes.

If you must mail a check or make a wire, but very careful to follow the instructions and formally follow-up to ensure the funds reached your account.

For instructions on the new E-Bill system, please visit the AdvisorAssist Blog.

As a reminder, in February 2014, FINRA will switch its banking services to a new bank. As part of this transition, FINRA will simplify the methods firms use to make payments to us.

First, FINRA will consolidate all check payment addresses, with the exception of GASB payments, into a single payment address. This change will allow for a more efficient check payment and deposit process.

Second, to ensure your firm's payments are applied to the correct invoice in a timely manner, firms must include invoice numbers on all check remittances, and include it as the reference number on ACH and wire payments. Note: If a firm submits a payment without an invoice number, FINRA will apply the funds to the firm's FINRA Flex-Funding account, which is accessible via E-Bill. Someone at your firm must then transfer the funds to the appropriate invoice in order for the invoice to be closed.

Starting in February, you must use the following information to make payments to FINRA.

Mailing Address

To mail a check to FINRA, include the invoice number on the check and mail the payment to:

All payments (except GASB payments)
  Bank of America Lockbox Services   FINRA 418911   MA5-527-02-07   2 Morrissey Blvd.   Dorchester, MA 02125

GASB payments
  Bank of America Lockbox Services   GASB 418925   MA5-527-02-07   2 Morrissey Blvd.   Dorchester, MA 02125

Wiring Instructions

To wire a payment to FINRA, provide your firm's bank with the following information:

FINRA and subsidiaries (except GASB payments)
  Transfer funds to: FINRA   Wire ABA Number: 026009593   ACH ABA Number: 054001204   Beneficiary: FINRA   FINRA Account Number: 226005684771   Reference Number: Invoice number

GASB payments
  Transfer funds to: FINRA   Wire ABA Number: 026009593   ACH ABA Number: 054001204   Beneficiary: FINRA   FINRA Account Number: 226005684823   Reference Number: Invoice number

W-9 Information

Please see the attached W-9 for the relevant information to update your Accounts Payable system.

As a reminder, firms can view and pay invoices through E-Bill, FINRA's electronic billing system.

If you have any questions, please contact the FINRA Accounts Receivable Department at (240) 386-5909.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

FINRA - 2014 Final Renewal Statement

Happy New Year!

We hope you had a nice holiday season.

As the final step in the 2014 Renewal Fee process, AdvisorAssist is reviewing your accounts to ensure proper processing of your fees. If during the preliminary renewal process, we made additions to filings or removal of filings, there are adjustments that will need to be made to your account. You may have an additional balance due by January 10, 2013 or be due a refund.

You may have received the following generic notice from FINRA. We will inform or any action required as soon as we review your account this week.

Your firm's Final Renewal Statement, which reflects the final registration statuses of your investment adviser firm and representatives as of December 31, 2013, is now available in IARD. Adjustments resulting from registration approvals or terminations subsequent to the posting of the Preliminary Renewal Statement on November 11, 2013, have been made in this final, reconciled statement. Retrieve your online statement by logging onto IARD and selecting the Renewal Statement link from the Accounting section of the site map.

Please note the following with respect to your statement:

  • If your firm's Final Renewal Statement reflects 'Paid in Full' and the 'Amount Due' is $0, then either:
    • your firm is not required to submit any additional payment because no adjustments were made after the Preliminary Renewal Statement; or
    • your firm overpaid its renewal fees and the funds were transferred to your firm's FINRA Flex-Funding Account, which you can verify in your firm's Flex-Funding Account Transfer Detail. You may request a refund or leave the funds in your Flex-Funding Account for future registration-related fees.
  • If you have an amount due, your payment must be received by FINRA and posted to your Renewal Account by January 10, 2014. Visit the IARD website for detailed renewal payment instructions.
  • If your firm has any renewal discrepancies, you should report them in writing to FINRA.

For complete renewal information, visit the IARD Renewal Program Web page and review the IARD Renewal Program Bulletin. If you have questions, please contact the IARD Call Center at (240) 386-4848 or email iard@finra.org.

The IARD Renewal Program facilitates the annual renewal of IA firms and their representatives' registrations with jurisdictions/states. As the operator of IARD, FINRA collects the renewal fees of electronic IA filers on behalf of the jurisdictions. Important note to SEC-registered IA firms: The IARD Renewal Program does not include fees associated with your firm's SEC registration.

Problems logging onto IARD?
If you have not logged onto IARD in the past 120 days, your password has expired. To obtain a new password, select the Forgot Password? link on the login screen and a new password will be emailed to you.