Change or cancel an approval for a controlled function

Find out which forms you need to amend, withdraw, cancel or change approval for a controlled function, including an SMF.

They include:

  • Form B – withdrawing an approval application that is in progress
  • Form C – notice of ceasing to perform a controlled function
  • Form D – notification of changes in personal information or application details
  • Form E – internal transfer of a controlled function

Our Handbook includes a summary of these and other forms used for approval applications to perform a controlled function.

Withdrawal of application in progress (form B at SUP 10C Annex 4R)

The notice to withdraw an application must be submitted on paper, and both the candidate and the firm need to sign the form. We need the original signed form before completing the withdrawal.

Firm cancellation

If your approved person ends controlled function tasks – or if they are deemed to no longer be fit and proper – you must submit a completed form C through Connect. This must happen no later than 10 business days after an approved person stops controlled function work.

If an approved person ceases to perform controlled functions for several firms within the same group, a single form C may be used, ensuring all firms are clearly marked on the form.

If an approved person has been dismissed or requested to resign, or the firm has any doubts about their fitness and propriety, a full explanation of the reason for the dismissal or resignation must be provided. If the firm ticks the box marked ‘Suspension’, the firm will have to reapply (using Form A) for the individual to perform controlled functions again.

A qualified withdrawal notification may be necessary where:

  • the firm reasonably believes information it has obtained may affect our assessment of an approved person’s fitness and propriety
  • a firm dismisses, or suspends, an approved person from its employment
  • an approved person resigns while under investigation by the firm, us or any other regulatory body

If your Form C is qualified with factual and substantiated information, email us at [email protected] with details.

FCA withdrawal

As noted above, if we consider an individual is no longer fit and proper, we have the power to withdraw approval. That decision is based on the same factors as a decision to grant approval.

Change in personal information

Use the form for notification of changes in personal information (form D) if an approved person or details in an application to perform controlled functions change. We do not need to know about changes in a person’s private address. Please do not use this form if the approved person requires approval for further controlled function or has ceased controlled functions (more on these below).

Internal transfer

You should use the application for an internal transfer (form E) when an approved person stops performing one or more controlled functions and the firm wishes to apply for approval for the individual regarding other controlled functions. This application may also be used for transfers between firms that are part of the same group.

This application should not be used for a qualified withdrawal.

Notification to cease a controlled function (form C) must be used if the individual is ceasing to perform a controlled function and the firm is not seeking approval for another controlled function.

An application to perform a controlled function (form A) must be completed in full if the approved person is seeking approval for an SIF for the first time.

Ceasing a controlled function

A notification to cease a controlled function must be used when an approved person no longer performs one or more controlled functions. If an approved person ceases to perform controlled functions across firms within the same group, a single notification may be used, ensuring all firms are selected.

Users must select the relevant firm when starting the application to complete a notification for an individual under that firm.

A notification should be submitted no later than 10 business days after an approved person ceases to perform a controlled function. 

If options ‘Termination of Employment or Contract’, ‘Suspension’ or ‘Other’ are selected in the ‘reason’ field, comprehensive information explaining this reason for this selection must be supplied in the ‘additional information’ field. Your application may be delayed if you fail to supply this information.


We may fine or publicly reprimand an approved person who fails to meet our requirements. We might seek to take away their approved person status which would severely affect their employment prospects in the financial services industry.

Emergency situations

You may be able to appoint an individual to perform an SIF without requiring approval. This can happen for a period up to 12 weeks in a consecutive 12 month period to cover temporary or unforeseen absences, such as holidays and emergencies.

You should contact your supervision team to talk about using this rule, including cases where it becomes clear the period of absence will be more than 12 weeks.

Notification of competence

All firms with retail investment advisers must notify us of competence and ethics problems that arise with those advisers.

You should notify us if a retail investment adviser:

  • is no longer considered competent
  • failed to attain an appropriate qualification within the prescribed time limit
  • failed to keep to a Statement of Principle (APER)
  • performed an activity without demonstrating competence and without supervision

If an adviser has breached any of these requirements, your firm must fill in a notification form and email us at [email protected].

Some issues may be put right almost instantly by firms where there is no risk to consumers, or where there is no suggestion of serious competence issues. For example, failing an internal assessment as part of an ongoing training programme.

Firms are already obliged to monitor their advisers, and should continue to do so. The ethical behaviour and competence of advisers is critical and this notification requirement informs our supervision of individual advisers by providing us with insights into individual competence and actions. We are asking for this information because we are concerned that firms only have access to a part of the picture – the adviser’s time at their firm. This notification allows us to build a better view of advisers as they move between firms.

Declarations and signatures

As with applying to approve an individual, declarations must be signed by both an appropriate individual for the firm or applicant submitting the application and the candidate. Signatures must not be dated more than three months prior to the date of application submission.

We consider an appropriate individual someone approved for a controlled function (CF 1 to 12, 28 or 29) or someone the firm has delegated the authority to notify us. If this authority has been delegated, the firm should keep records of individuals authorised to sign on behalf of the firm.

All submitted signatures should be originals.

Page updates

17/08/2021: Information changed '7 business days' corrected to '10 business days'.