Fitness to Own Frequently Asked Questions
Fitness to Own FAQ’s for applicants who seek authorisation of their entity by CILEx Regulation or for existing entities authorised by CILEx Regulation.
1: What do I need to declare in regard to my business or related businesses?
Ans: You will need to declare the following:
• Resolutions for voluntary winding-up passed without a declaration of solvency under section 89 of the Insolvency Act 1986?
• If your business or related businesses has ever entered administration within the meaning of paragraph 1(2)(b) of Schedule B1 to that Act?
• If an administrative receiver within the meaning of section 251 of the Act has ever been appointed?
• If your business or related businesses has ever been the subject of a meeting of its creditors under section 95 of that Act?
• If an order for the winding up of your business applying to be authorised, or any related businesses (i.e. parent/subsidiary) has been made?
• If your business or related businesses has been the subject of a civil judgement?
• Any investigation or proceedings conducted by any regulatory or professional body that your business or related business has been the subject of?
2: Do I need to declare everything?
Ans: You must ensure that you answer fully all the questions within your Fitness to Own declaration. If you are in any doubt on what to declare please contact CILEx Regulation for guidance.
You must declare Fitness to Own matters on all forms and documents and submit your return to CILEx Regulation, or at the time the conduct matter occurred, whichever is sooner. You must also declare Fitness to Own on annual return forms. If a Fitness to Own matter arises at a time you are not completing a form for submission to CILEx Regulation you must write to us to declare the matter.
3: What happens when I declare a Fitness to Own matter?
Ans: Your Fitness to Own declaration will be reviewed by CILEx Regulation’s Investigation team. We will gather information relating to the Fitness to Own matter from you and decide what, if any, action to take in relation to it. The decision will relate to whether to accept your application for regulation or, where you are already regulated by CILEx Regulation, what action to take in relation to your continued regulation.
4: How long will it take for my Fitness to Own matter to be considered?
Ans: This will depend on the type of conduct you have declared and how promptly you provide the information we request from you. All Fitness to Own declarations must be put to our Professional Conduct Panel (PCP). The PCP will decide what action, if any, to take based on the information you have provided. A decision will usually be made on the day of the meeting unless further information is required by the PCP. If you do not provide the information promptly, this will delay the determination of your matter.
5: What information will I need to submit to CILEx Regulation relating to my Fitness to Own declaration?
Ans: We will write to you requesting the following types of evidence some may only apply if you are applying to become an Approved Manager and/or a Compliance Manager:
- Disclosure Barring Service report
- Companies House documents
- Copy of a Court Order
- Details relating to any winding up or insolvency arrangements, including resolutions
- A receivers or creditors report
- Details of the circumstances that led to the Fitness to Own matter
- Letters relating to a debt that is owed and/or evidence that it has been repaid in full
- Details relating to any regulatory investigations
- Any mitigation that you wish to bring to the attention of the decision making Panel
- Information relating to your conduct since the matter occurred
This list is not exhaustive and there may be circumstance where you are unable to get this information. If this is the case you must contact CILEx Regulation to explore other routes through which you can obtain the information.
6: Can I submit character evidence?
Ans: Yes you may submit character evidence. Where your character evidence is in the form of references they must be signed and dated, with clear details of the status of the person providing the reference. We will require original signed copies. The reference should be no more than 6 months old.
7: When do PCP meetings take place?
Ans: PCP meetings take place every six weeks and there are approximately 8 to 9 meetings each year. If you are unable to provide the required information to us at least 2 weeks before the scheduled meeting of the PCP your matter will be delayed until the next meeting of the Panel. This is because we send papers to our Panels two weeks in advance of meetings.
8: Who sits on the PCP?
Ans: The PCP sits as a panel of three members. Two are lay members who are non-lawyers. One is a Fellow of CILEx and is called the professional member. All members are independent of CILEx Regulation. CILEx Regulation only attends meetings of the PCP to provide any further information the Panel may request.
The PCP is supported by an independent Clerk who takes minutes of the meeting and assists with procedural matters. The Clerk takes no part in decision making.
9: Will I need to attend a meeting?
Ans: In some cases you may be asked to attend a meeting by the PCP to answer questions they may have. You will be given notice of whether this has been ordered.
10: Where are the meetings held?
Ans: The meetings are held at CILEx offices at Kempston Manor, Kempston, Bedford MK42 7AB. The Clerk to the PCP will take you through to the meeting after you have reported to reception.
11. Will I need to bring anything with me to the meeting?
Ans: If you have been ordered to attend you must bring a form of identification with you and a copy of any original documents that you have used in support of your entity authorisation application form, unless the originals are already with CILEx Regulation. You may wish to prepare in advance any submissions or mitigation about your Fitness to Own matter ready to provide to the PCP.
12. What happens at the conclusion of the meeting?
Ans: You will receive a copy of the signed order providing reasons for the decision about your prior conduct. This will be sent within 21 days of the meeting.
13. If my application is refused can I make another application to become an Authorised Entity?
Ans: Yes you may reapply. You should consider the reasons why your application was refused and wherever you can make attempts to address those issues before reapplying. There will be a fee for each application made.
14. Can I appeal a decision?
Ans: Yes you may appeal a decision of the PCP.
You will have 42 calendar days within which to appeal. To appeal you will need
to complete an appeal form and set out your grounds for appeal. If you are
unclear about Fitness to Own declarations then please email us. If you have questions about
declaring Prior Conduct as an individual guidance can be found here.