The FCA has published an update on its operating service metrics for dealing with various applications, including authorisation, change in control and approved persons applications. 

The update includes a number of points of interests for those contemplating an application and seeking to understand the FCA's likely approach and timings:

  • Authorisation caseloads have fallen from a peak in December 2021 and are approaching more sustainable levels, with the FCA also continuing its programme of recruitment. 
  • Incomplete and poor-quality applications remain a particular issue for Money Laundering Registrations and Payments Services Regulations and Electronic Money Regulations applications.
  • Additional time may be needed for greater scrutiny of complex cases and where greater engagement is required so the FCA can meet its objectives effectively. 
  • The FCA has significantly reduced the time to allocate change in control notifications to a case officer and on average now allocates and begins work within 3 days of receipt. It expects to be allocating within 24 hours by the end of March 2023.
  • Processing of approved persons applications within the three month timescale has significantly improved compared with 2021/22.