Related provisions for SUP 18.2.22
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The suitability of a person to act as an independent expert depends on the nature of the scheme and the firms concerned. On the basis of the preliminary information supplied by the scheme promoters (and any other knowledge it has of the circumstances and the firms), the FSA will consider what skills are needed to make a proper report on the scheme and what criteria should therefore be applied to the choice of independent expert. The FSA will inform the promoters of any such criteria
Under section 107(2) of the Act, the application to the court may be made by the transferor or the transferee or both. As soon as reasonably practical, the intended applicant should choose their nominee for independent expert in the light of any criteria advised by the FSA and advise the FSA of their choice, unless the FSA wishes them to defer nomination or to make its own nomination. The notification should be accompanied by reasons why the party considers the nominee to be a
The FSA may wish to have preliminary discussions with the nominee about the transfer to help the FSA determine whether he is suitably qualified to address issues arising from the transfer. The FSA will consider the suitability of the nominee and inform the firm that nominated him whether it approves him. Since the nature of the scheme is a factor in determining the suitability of the nominee, the FSA cannot approve a nominee before the broad outlines of the scheme have been determined.
There may be matters relating to the scheme or the parties to the transfer that the FSA wishes to draw to the attention of the independent expert. The FSA may also wish the report to address particular issues. The independent expert should therefore contact the FSA at an early stage to establish whether there are such matters or issues. The independent expert should form his own opinion on such issues, which may differ from the opinion of the FSA.
The scheme report will be an important factor in the view the FSA forms on a scheme. The FSA will place considerable reliance on the opinions of the independent expert and the reasons for them. However it will form its own view taking into account other information and having regard to its regulatory objectives.