- Form ADV. The Investment Advisers Act and relevant state registration laws require advisers to file an accurate and truthful Form. Our professionals will perform a full review of your firm’s organizational structure, potential conflicts of interest, supervisory oversight, and investment advisory activities, activities of related persons, regulatory history, and compliance practices. With this information, we can revise and update Form ADV to be accurate in all material respects.
- Compliance Policies & Procedures. Multiple laws may apply to your advisory business, e.g., Advisers Act, Regulation S-P, state securities laws, 1933 Act, 1934 Act, and rules and regulations promulgated thereunder. Our knowledgeable and experienced consultants can draft and/or amend compliance policies and procedures to assist your compliance with such laws.
- Risk Assessment. Risk assessments and internal control reports capture the full inventory of compliance risks, and assign a risk rating for each compliance risk. This helps guide the drafting of written policies and procedures.
- Compliance Program Design. Our Investment adviser clients range from state registrants with only separate account clients to multi-billion AUM advisers with both separate account and private fund clients, and everything in between. We will make sure compliance program is tailored to fit your business.
- Compliance Testing. MCS can perform compliance monitoring and forensic testing required by your compliance policies and procedures, or to otherwise test certain aspects of your compliance program.
- Annual Compliance Review. MCS can perform the annual compliance review required by Rule 206(4)-7 of the Advisers Act and prepare the associated report regarding the adequacy of your compliance policies and procedures, and the effectiveness of their implementation. MCS’ reviews conform to guidance published by the SEC for the conduct of 206(4)-7 reviews.
- Marketing & Advertisement Reviews . MCS can analyse all your advertising materials (including websites, blogs, and social media) to ensure compliance with the advertising rule (as modified by SEC guidance) and state laws. As part of this, MCS can draft necessary disclosures to advertising materials to assist in complying with your obligation to provide disclosure of all material facts.
- Regulatory Examinations. In the event an SEC or state examination, MCS can provide on-site assistance serving as a contact for the regulators, participating in calls and meetings, assisting with document requests, as well as drafting responses to deficiency letters and regulatory inquiries.
- Mock Exams. Because our Compliance Consultants are well seasoned professionals with in- depth SEC and state examination knowledge and experience, we and they can conduct a mock examination of your advisory business, including interviews with key personnel, reviews of relevant documents and testing, and prepare a written report of our findings. We will gather the requested documents, review the documents for completeness, and organize these documents in SEC or state examination formats.
- Deficiency Letters. Because we have assisted with hundreds of SEC exams, we are experts in preparing responses to SEC or state deficiency letters.
- Compliance Training. MCS can conduct compliance training for your entire organizations or for key members, e.g., chief compliance officers, compliance staff. These can be done in-person, remotely via Skype/webinars or we can prepare materials for internal presentations.
- Cybersecurity. MCS can help develop policies and procedures for investment advisers to keep in line with regulatory requirements for protecting personally identifiable information for advisory clients. MCS also conducts staff training and compliance testing with respect to cybersecurity.
- Business Continuity/Disaster Recovery Plan. MCS can develop plans to maintain effective business operations in the event of a significant business disruption, as well as periodic or annual testing.
- Code of Ethics. MCS can help ensure your code of ethics complies with Rule 204A-1, and is appropriate for your business. The code should cover more than personal trading, it should provide a standard of conduct and require oversight of certain potential conflicts, e.g., outside business activities, gifts and entertainment.
- Compliance Calendars and Regulatory Reminders. MCS develops customized compliance calendars to help keep advisers on track with legal requirements (deadlines for Form ADV, Form PF or Section 13 reporting), personnel reporting obligations (deadlines for personal securities reporting, periodic attestations) and compliance testing.
- Best Execution. Besides ensuring that your best execution policies and procedures are appropriate for your business, MCS can hold or participate in best execution review meetings to guide the process. We can conduct periodic qualitative analyses to determine whether your clients are receiving best execution in accordance with SEC requirements and prepare written best execution reports.
- Trade Blotter Surveillance. MCS can perform reviews of trade blotters regularly to identify issues that could cause concern to regulators such as front-running, window dressing, cherry picking, cross trade issues and other areas.
- Remote/Branch Office Supervision. MCS can develop policies and procedures covering your remote/branch offices.
- Solicitors. MCS can conduct due diligence of your solicitors, develop a solicitation agreement, and create a written disclosure document. MCS can also develop supervisory procedures for the adviser to properly document its oversight of solicitors.
- IARD Administration. MCS can support all regulatory filings, including state notice filings, and perform annual investment adviser registration renewals.
- IAR Analysis. MCS can conduct an analysis of personnel to determine if registration and/or notice filing of IARs are required in the individual states and territories that have jurisdictional authority over your adviser.
- Regulatory Filings. MCS can draft and/or amend required regulatory filings to be submitted to the SEC, including Form ADV, Form PF, Form 13H, Form 13F, and Schedule 13D, Schedule 13G and Form D. MCS can review draft versions of filings prepared by third parties for accuracy and completeness prior to filing.
- Form PF. MCS can create a timeline and key milestones with your service providers (external auditor, fund accountant, administrator, outside counsel, etc.) and obtain all required information and data in order to properly draft and file Form PF.
- Email/Instant Messaging Surveillance. MCS can conduct on-going surveillance of emails and instant messages to identify non-compliant activities and produce a comprehensive memo highlighting issues found.
- Watch/Restricted List. MCS can create, maintain, and distribute securities watch and restricted lists.
- Employee Trading Reviews. MCS can review personal securities transaction statements each quarter to help advisers comply with Code of Ethics requirements.
- Due Diligence Questionnaires/RFPs. MCS can conduct a compliance review of due diligence questionnaires and requests for proposals completed by your investment adviser for any potential inaccuracies or misrepresentations prior to dissemination.
- Suitability Reviews. MCS can perform reviews of client portfolios to ensure compatibility with each client’s investment objectives and risk tolerance.
- Undisclosed Disciplinary Action Reviews. MCS can help research and confirm whether any supervised persons have not disclosed disciplinary history.
- Outside Business Activity Oversight. MCS conducts research and reviews of outside business activities of supervised persons to identify any conflicts of interest.
- Books & Records. MCS can create and maintain books and records required by the Advisers Act and state laws.
- Agreements & Contracts. MCS can review and update your advisory agreements and solicitor agreements to ensure they comply with the requirements of the Advisers Act and other SEC positions, e.g., hedge clauses.
- Additional Services. Additional testing, reviews and consulting can be completed by our team on an à la carte basis, and rolled into whichever service may best fit your needs, or we can perform a one-time engagement.
What is a RIA Compliance Consultant?
A RIA Compliance Consultant offers expertise and guidance for Registered Investment Advisors (RIAs) seeking to comply with federal regulations. From conducting risk assessments to developing compliance policies and procedures, these consultants provide essential support for RIAs looking to ensure they are operating within the law. In addition, they can assist with creating and implementing a Code of Ethics, ensuring that RIAs maintain high standards of conduct. With the constantly evolving regulatory landscape, a RIA Compliance Consultant can provide peace of mind and ensure the smooth functioning of an investment advisory firm. So whether you're starting a new RIA or looking to review and update your current compliance structure, a Mission Critical Services representative is ready to assist.
What are RIA Compliance Services?
When it comes to managing and protecting clients' assets, investment advisors have a responsibility to adhere to strict regulatory guidelines. This is where RIA Compliance Services can assist. RIA, or Registered Investment Advisor, services specialize in making sure advisors comply with regulations set by bodies such as the SEC and FINRA. This includes reviewing marketing materials, conducting annual audits, and providing ongoing support for compliance management. By working with an RIA service like Mission Critical Services, investment advisors can feel confident that they are meeting all regulatory requirements and providing the highest level of protection for their clients' assets. In today's increasingly regulated financial industry, utilizing RIA Compliance Services is a necessary part of any successful advisory practice.
How do I start a Registered Investment Advisor Firm?
Starting your own Registered Investment Advisor (RIA) firm can be a rewarding and profitable venture, but it's important to remember that it is a highly regulated industry. First, you will need to obtain a series of licenses and registrations, including the Series 65 or Series 7 license for securities transactions and a state-level RIA registration. Next, you'll need to establish a strong business plan and secure adequate insurance coverage. You may also want to consider partnering with an established RIA firm, as this can provide a steady flow of clients and support during the initial launch phase. Finally, effective marketing can help bring in new clients while also demonstrating your expertise and trustworthiness in the industry. While starting an RIA firm requires careful planning and consideration, it can ultimately provide financial security and career satisfaction for years to come. Give us a call today at 212-734-0322 to learn more.