Registered Investment Advisor Compliance
State and federal regulators have stepped-up enforcement actions against registered investment advisors in the wake of the many recent and well-publicized instances of misconduct by asset managers, large and small. We strive to ensure our registered investment advisor clients are aware of their ongoing obligations, have a robust compliance infrastructure, and are free to focus on managing assets.
Regulatory audits, inquiries, and reviews can cause costly business interruptions and are generally a distraction from activities focused on achieving core business objectives. The best way to minimize the impact of regulatory requirements and inquiries for a registered investment advisor is to implement a robust, firm-wide compliance program, and monitor its administration regularly.
We provide a range of RIA compliance services designed specifically with our registered investment advisor clients in mind. Among others, these services include drafting compliance policies and procedures, advising on investment advisor compliance responsibilities under state “blue sky” laws and the Investment Advisors Act of 1940, conducting mock audits and mock SEC examinations, and interfacing with regulators during periodic reviews.
Only when you are fully aware of your compliance responsibilities and are confident in your compliance infrastructure designed to address these responsibilities can you be free to focus on your core objectives of client service and delivering outstanding returns.
Whether you are launching as a new registered investment advisor or are experienced in handling RIA compliance matters, our firm can be a resource to develop or improve your RIA compliance infrastructure.
As part of our ongoing Registered Investment Advisor Compliance services we will assist you with:
- Developing a detailed compliance calendar that is unique to your business
- Developing and implementing a compliance training program for your employees
- Reviewing disclosure documents for consistency with actual business practices
- Suggesting modifications to your overall compliance program where there may be deficiencies
- Revising and updating your RIA compliance manual and code of ethics
- Assistance with administering the firm’s annual compliance review
- Conducting compliance training seminars for employees
Reviews for SEC Registered Investment Advisors
We routinely provide established registered investment advisors with comprehensive compliance infrastructure reviews. As part of this process, we review all of your compliance obligations under the Investment Advisors Act of 1940 and other applicable regulations. This review is also useful for managers that are not registered with the SEC but want to evaluate their infrastructure against SEC requirements and other best practices. Many institutional investors will review RIA compliance policies and procedures prior to making an investment with any registered investment advisor.
Our compliance team will review all of your internal compliance policies, procedures, and existing business practices and will provide feedback on our findings along with practical recommendations for improvement. During this evaluation, we will determine whether your firm’s actual business operations are consistent with your compliance documentation. Part of our feedback will also include suggestions on how to simplify and streamline your procedures.
Mock Audits and SEC Examinations
We regularly conduct mock audits and mock SEC examinations to test our clients’ policies and procedures and ensure that our registered investment advisor clients are fully prepared for their next regulatory review. Our team of experienced compliance professionals includes senior securities attorneys and Investment Advisor Certified Compliance Professionals (IACCP).
Mock SEC examinations and mock audits for state registered investment advisors typically include a review of procedures and practices related to:
- Form ADV disclosure, delivery, and updates
- Code of ethics / personal securities trading
- Annual RIA compliance review
- Review of fiduciary obligations
- Insider trading
- Money movement controls
- Proxy voting
- General employee responsibilities
- “Soft dollar” usage and policies
- Privacy policies
- Aggregation / allocation practices
- Email retention and review
- “Best execution” review process
- Marketing materials
- Public website use and Regulation D matters
With respect to private fund managers, including hedge fund managers, we will examine specific issues such as:
- Investor eligibility
- Valuation procedures
- Custody requirements
- Third-party marketing arrangements
- IRA investment / prohibited transaction issues
- ERISA calculations
- 3(c)(1) beneficial owner counting
- AML procedures
- “Blue sky” filing procedures and current compliance status