Webinar: Enhanced U4 Filing Experience
Learn More About the Enhanced U4 Filing Online Experience
FINRA is hosting a series of webinars to discuss the improved U4 online filing experience that will become available this summer in FINRA Gateway and FinPro. Every webinar includes a demonstration of new functionality as well as time for a Q&A. Consult this page for registration information about upcoming sessions and resources from previous webinar dates.
Subscribe to the FINRA Registration and Licensing email list if you would like to receive notifications about similar future events. See the FINRA Webinars page for information about other FINRA Systems programming.
On This Page
March 2020 Webinar
During the webinar, FINRA staff discussed:
- navigating to and through the online filing experience in FINRA Gateway and FinPro;
- improvements under development for the Disclosure Reporting Pages (DRP);
- how you can help during user testing; and
- other important rollout information, including key dates, phases and milestones.
Enhanced U4 Webinar Presentation Slides - March 2020
February 2020 Webinars
During these sessions, FINRA staff discussed:
- how your U4 filing experience will improve;
- why FINRA is making changes to the U4 filing experience; and
- recent developments, rollout dates, details and resources.
Enhanced U4 Webinar Presentation Slides - February 2020
Enhanced U4 Online Filing Experience Webinar Recording - February 2020
1. What is the objective of FINRA's filing experience enhancements?
To make it easier for firm compliance and registration staff to meet registration filing requirements, as well as reduce the learning curve for new financial professionals. We heard from firms there was room to improve the workflow for small amendments and bulk changes, so we are developing tools to handle these items more efficiently. In addition to improving the filing experience, we hope it will encourage more accurate, complete and timely submissions, thereby reducing unnecessary (and sometimes costly) resubmissions. Not only will firms and individuals benefit but so will the investing public who look to BrokerCheck and IAPD for registration information.
2. What will change with the enhanced U4?
FINRA initially focused on the following aspects of the filing experience:
- streamlining the form initialization flow,
- eliminating the need to pick the specific U4 filing type,
- improving the grouping of thematic information together (e.g., all personal information is in a single section as opposed to the four distinct sections of the legal form),
- providing more guided navigation so firms accurately answer only the questions that are relevant to a specific situation,
- strengthening validations to ensure the form is as complete as possible before submission,
- updating the functionality to query within the form for information already in the system, and
- integrating additional existing U4 interpretive guidance and definitions of terms throughout the form.
3. Can I submit all forms using this new functionality?
Eventually, yes. The U4 is the first form developed and released during this initiative, but these new capabilities will be released in phases for all of the FINRA forms (as appropriate). We plan to roll out enhanced filing experiences for the remaining individual-related registration forms (U5 and U6) in the second half of 2020.
4. When is the first release scheduled?
The enhanced U4 filing feature will go live in July 2020.
5. How can I ensure that my staff come up to speed with the changes to the U4 experience prior to launch?
We will provide multiple resources to learn more and prepare prior to launch. See the table below for more information about the timing and progression of these items.
- FINRA is conducting webinars showcasing upcoming technology developments.
- There will be a test environment available for firm users to familiarize themselves with the new filing experience.
- A production preview will be available in June before the official production launch. Users will not be able to submit filings, but the preview will allow users to experience the entire filing workflow up until the submission point.
- Once the U4 is officially launched in production, users will be directed to tutorials within the system that will walk them through the changes.
U4 Webinars Begin
Firm Testing – Standalone U4
Firm Testing – Integrated with FINRA Gateway
Continue Firm Testing
Rep Edit Testing
U4 Integrated with Finpro
Phased Production Preview
Continue Firm Testing
Classic CRD U4 screens will redirect to new screens
Web CRD Registered Rep site will shut down. Reps will use FinPro to access U4 filings sent to them for edits.
6. When the new experience for U4 is launched, will I still be able to file U4s the old way?
No. Due to the complexities with managing U4s in multiple platforms and ensuring your firm's data remain consistent, we will shut down the U4 form in Classic CRD and redirect users to the new U4 data entry screens. Firms will only be able to submit U4s in the enhanced filing format after the production launch of the new U4 experience.
7. What will happen to any of my pending draft U4 filings that are already in progress when the new launch occurs?
Firms will be required to submit any pending draft U4 filings in the old system prior to the launch. On or after launch, draft filings that were initiated in the classic CRD system cannot be submitted, nor will they be accessible in a read-only format. Users will need to start a new filing in the enhanced U4 layout.
8. My firm is a Web EFT subscriber. We submit U4 and U5 batch filings via Web EFT. Is my firm affected by the U4 changes that will launch in July?
The first release of the U4 is specifically focused on the online submission experience. We do not plan on making any schema changes to the existing XML batch filing interface.
9. My firm uses the “Allow Rep Edits” feature and directs our reps to the Web CRD Registered Representative site to edit their U4. If that is no longer available, how can individuals access their pending U4?
Firms that use the “Allow Rep Edits” feature will need to direct individuals to the Financial Professional Gateway (FinPro) to access and edit their U4. In addition to accessing pending U4 filings, FinPro offers a growing suite of compliance resources. More information is available on the FinPro page.
Accessing FinPro requires creating an account and satisfying identity verification requirements. Firms can onboard their reps to register and use FinPro now; they do not have to wait until the U4 launch.
10. What other features/forms will be available beyond July?
We are planning to introduce API submissions, starting with the individual-related registration forms (in lieu of XML batch filings), by the end of the year. In-line amendment capabilities (e.g., initiating residential address changes within an individual’s record instead of a form), and tools to support bulk changes (e.g., moving people between branches) are also in development for release during the second half of 2020.