4.2 Delineation of responsibilities in the suitability assessment

4.2.1 Responsibility of the company and of the person to be assessed

4:9 It is primarily incumbent on the company to assess the suitability of persons who hold positions requiring a suitability assessment. The company should inform (inter alia) the NBB of the outcome of its suitability assessment, including the assessment of suitability of the collective composition of the board of directors and the management committee.

4:10 The board of directors is responsible for the recruitment policy, the selection process and the induction and training policies, which inter alia govern suitability assessments. If the company has a nomination committee, the latter should actively contribute to the company’s accountability in this respect. Furthermore, it is among the duties of the company’s compliance function to ensure compliance with legal and regulatory suitability requirements.

4:11 Both the company and the person to be assessed must ensure that the information provided to the NBB is complete and accurate.

4.2.2 Responsibility of the NBB

4:12 When a new person is deemed suitable by the company, the NBB examines the necessary information and carries out an assessment on the basis of which it decides on the final approval of this person’s appointment. For its own assessment, the NBB primarily relies on the information supplied by the company and the person concerned. This information is collected using standard forms designed specifically for this purpose (see Chapter 5 of this Manual). Of course, the NBB is free to request additional information and, where appropriate, to interview the person concerned.

4.2.3 Responsibility for the ongoing assessment of suitability

4:13 The legal requirement, provided for in the Insurance Supervision Law, to ensure that the positions falling within the scope of the law are at all times held by persons who are suited to do so constitutes an ongoing obligation on the part of the companies. The persons concerned must be fit and proper at all times. The specific details of ongoing suitability monitoring are discussed in more detail later in this chapter.

4:14 However, as regards the respective responsibilities of the parties involved for ensuring ongoing suitability, the following applies:

The person concerned

4:15 On the standard forms to be completed by the person concerned and the company, the former is expected to declare that he/she has made every effort to comply continuously with the suitability standards for the purposes of the position which he/she already holds or plans to hold.

4:16 Persons already in office must immediately inform the company of any event that is likely to influence their suitability (see Chapter 5).

The company

4:17 Where a company considers that doubts might arise as to the suitability of a person in office or as to the collective suitability of the company’s board of directors or management committee, it should take measures as soon as possible to seek a solution. The company must also immediately inform the NBB.

4:18 In order to ensure the ongoing suitability of the persons concerned, the NBB recommends the following:

  • When a person takes up a position, it is recommended for the company to request a written declaration in which this person confirms that he/she will unreservedly abide by the current suitability standards for this position and that he/she will immediately communicate any information that could affect the assessment of his/her suitability.
  • The person concerned should be reminded of this declaration. For instance, the company can, on an annual basis for significant companies and every two years for less significant companies, explicitly ask the persons concerned whether they are aware of any relevant changes that could affect the assessment of their suitability.

4:19 As the financial sector is constantly evolving, ongoing training is a necessary but not a priori sufficient condition for meeting the fitness requirement on an ongoing basis. The company is expected to take the necessary steps to provide adequate and relevant ongoing training.

The supervisor

4:20 The NBB continuously monitors the fitness and propriety of the persons subject to the suitability assessment. Whenever it becomes aware of any information which raises doubts about the suitability of a person in office, it immediately carries out a more in-depth examination and, where necessary, reassesses this person’s suitability.