Advice and guidance

Money guidance is different from financial advice. It’s important you know the boundaries when supporting your customers. 

Meaning of advice and guidance

We recognise the word ‘advice’ has different meanings in different contexts. In the context of money, giving “Advice” is a regulated activity. Only firms that are regulated by the Fincancial Conduct Authority (FCA) can offer this.

The Money Guidance Competency Framework is for non-regulated money guidance. A helpful definition of the difference of guidance and advice is below*


  • Guidance is an impartial service which will help you to identify your options and narrow down your choices but will not tell you what to do or which product to buy; the decision is yours.
  • Providers of guidance are responsible for the accuracy and quality of the information they provide but not for any decision made based on it.
  • Guidance is free unless your provider clearly tells you otherwise.
  • Guidance will suggest what you could do. 


  • Advice will recommend a specific product or course of action for you to take given your circumstances and financial goals. 
  • This will be personal to you, based on information you provide.
  • Advice will be provided by a qualified and regulated individual or online by a regulated organisation.
  • Providers of advice are responsible and liable for the accuracy, quality and suitability of the recommendation that they make, and you are protected by law.
  • Advice will recommend what you should do.

Money guidance practitioners do not provide personal recommendations for financial products, or recommendations on a specific course of action. However, money guidance practitioners do need to have a general and broad knowledge of the range of financial products and services available in the market place.

*Adapted from the suggested definitions of advice and guidance as part of the HM Treasury/FCA Financial Advice Market Review (FAMR).