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SEC Extends Form ADV Deadline: With a Big Catch

March 16th | 2020


Those of you who attended our Friday webinar, held immediately prior to the SEC’s press release on Friday heard us say that we did not think that the SEC would extend deadlines. During a period of financial turmoil, the SEC has historically sought more information from advisers, not less.


However, Trump’s declaration of a national emergency had many downstream implications within the government, some of which extended to the SEC. Prior periods of turmoil like 2008 did not involve national emergency declarations. The various government agencies operate under different rules during a declared national emergency and we believe that this was the legal signal that the SEC was looking for in order to offer reporting relief without negative consequences to the agency.


The SEC used the “public interest” powers of Section 206A to issue an order offering RIAs relief from some deadlines, however, each comes with a catch and it is important to review the criteria for relief carefully. Here is a summary:


If you cannot meet the March 30 (note the leap year deadline this year, in other years the deadline is March 31) for form ADV or the April 30th deadline for form PF, you will be offered relief, however the criteria to receive that relief is as follows:


  1. You must email a statement to the SEC that indicates that you are a) relying on the deadline relief order; b) a brief description of the reasons why you can not file or deliver your ADV or PF on a timely basis; and c) the date upon you believe you will be able to make delivery.

  2. With respect to form ADV, RIAs must post this same information on their public website if they have one or directly to clients if they do not have a public website.

  3. You must then make your filings as soon as practicable, but not less than 45 days after their original due dates.

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