Individual Accountability and SEAR
Culture and conduct are at the heart of the Central Bank of Ireland’s supervisory agenda, and at the core of the new Individual Accountability Framework (IAF). Our experienced, multidisciplinary team is focused on guiding clients through the implementation of the IAF and, in particular, the Senior Executive Accountability Regime (SEAR).
The Individual Accountability Framework and SEAR reflect the central role that culture and conduct now have in the Irish financial services sector. The Framework presents significant implementation challenges for regulated firms and senior individuals working within them.
Our experienced team comprises specialists from across the firm, including from our Financial Regulatory Group, Litigation, Dispute Resolution and Investigations Group, Asset Management and Investment Funds Group, Insurance Group and Employment Group. We use our significant knowledge and experience of the regulatory and enforcement environment to provide strategic advice and support to our clients as they manage the transition to the new IAF and beyond.
The Individual Accountability Framework and SEAR: An Overview
Our clients include major Irish and international credit institutions, investment firms, asset/fund managers, fund administrators, insurance companies, payment institutions, other types of regulated financial institutions and senior executives working within the financial services industry.
We provide advice on all aspects of the IAF and the SEAR, including on the scope and practical implications of the Framework. The group offers practical help to clients as they implement the new regime, including advising on the preparation of management responsibility maps and statements of responsibility, guidance and training on the proposed new conduct standards for individuals and for firms, and navigation of the new fitness and probity certification process. We also provide advice to executives and other employees on the new “duty of responsibility” and on the new conduct standards.
The Individual Accountability Framework and SEAR: Enforcement
Finance: Monthly Horizon Scanner
Our Finance Group publishes a monthly horizon-scanner, covering topical Irish and EU legal and regulatory matters. You can view the archive here.
- Provided advice to firms on technical aspects of the new Individual Accountability Framework and SEAR
- Provided training sessions on SEAR for industry bodies
- Significant experience in advising clients on major regulatory change projects, including implementation of the Central Bank’s “fitness and probity” regime
- Significant experience in guiding senior management teams, boards of directors and senior individuals through their legal and regulatory obligations, for example in the context of internal and external investigations (including by regulatory bodies such as the Central Bank of Ireland under the Administrative Sanctions Procedures regime)
- Conducted investigations into issues arising under the fitness and probity regime and supported firms and individuals during investigations by the Central Bank under the fitness and probity regime
- Through Sarah Thompson, who is a partner in our Financial Regulatory Group, we have experience of advising clients in the UK on the implementation of the FCA’s Senior Managers and Certification Regime (SM&CR) regime, on which SEAR draws heavily
“Leading firm that is able to provide best-in-class advice on the most complex transactions in the market. The advice is detailed, practical and commercial (and the team are a pleasure to work with).”
IFLR 1000: The Guide to the World’s Leading Financial Law Firms, 2021
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Chambers Europe, Europe’s Leading Lawyers for Business, 2020