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How to become an RIA in Louisiana

How to become an RIA in Louisiana

Starting an RIA in Louisiana requires advisors to meet specific guidelines. This article will explore what those are. 

Advisors who meet the following criteria must register their RIA with the state of Louisiana: 

  • The RIA is in Louisiana
  • You manage less than $100 million in AUM
  • You solicit your financial services in the state
  • You manage more than five state residents

If you need assistance setting up your RIA correctly, consider hiring a compliance consultant.  

Louisiana requires advisors to have one of the following professional designations: Series 65, Series 7 & 66, CFP, CFA, CIC, ChFC, or PFS.  

In addition to paying all the registration and filing fees, IARs must complete the following tasks and submissions in Louisiana:

  • Submit FINRA Entitlement Paperwork

    To register an RIA with Louisiana, advisors must register for an account to FINRA’s Web CRD/IARD system. Louisiana uses FINRA’s system to process the applications, but FINRA doesn’t regulate or supervise RIAs. 
  • Form ADV Part 1 (online only)

    Form ADV Part 1 provides information about the ownership, clients, business practices, disciplinary events, and affiliations of the RIA. It includes details about the advisor or its employees' involvement in disciplinary events. Advisors also utilize it to upload ADV Part 2A and ADV Part 2B.
  • Form ADV Part 2A (paper and online)

    Form ADV Part 2A lists the firm's fees, services, disciplinary disclosures, and other information related to the firm. Form ADV Part 2A is the firm's Disclosure Brochure for prospective and current clients.  

    The state requires this brochure to be written in simple English that's easy to understand. 
  • Form ADV Part 2B (paper and online)

    Form ADV Part 2B is another brochure for prospective and current clients. Advisors must also write it in plain English, that’s easy to understand. In this brochure, advisors will disclose their educational background, employment history, potential conflicts of interest, and any disciplinary actions. If there are any Executive Officers or representatives who advise clients, they must also complete this form. 

    If sponsoring a wrap fee program, Appendix 1 is also required.
  • Form U4

    Advisors will use Form U4 to register Investment Advisor Representatives (IARs).
  • Client Advisory Contract

    The state has set regulatory standards for client advisory. Filing this proves the RIA is compliant with those standards.
  • Financial & Bonding requirements

    Advisors must give the state an income statement and balance sheet (as of within 90 days before filing and prepared in accordance with GAAP standards). The balance sheet does not need to be certified by an independent public accountant.

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If you’re seeking approval as a state RIA for the first time, you will need to complete the following:

  • IARD/CRD Access & Authentication
  • SAA Creation & FINRA Entitlement
  • E-billing establishment & processing

Additional documents that Louisiana may require:

  • Privacy Policy Statement 

    Advisors must provide clients with the Privacy Policy Statement at the start of the relationship and every year after that. The policy must outline how the firm manages,  protects, and shares client data. The Privacy Policy Statement will be specific to the firm but must follow the rules of the State of Louisiana.
  • Policies and Procedures Manual

    The manual is a guide for the company's operations, including dealing with complaints and training new employees. It will also provide information on important policies like Business Continuity Plans, Anti-Money Laundering, Information Security, and Anti-Insider Trading Plans. 
  • Code of Ethics

    This filing confirms the RIA is meeting the state’s fiduciary standards.   

Starting an RIA doesn’t have to be overwhelming with the right resources, such as our comprehensive RIA launch kit.

At Altruist, we strive to make independent financial advice better, more accessible, and more affordable. Our platform gives back precious time and capital to RIAs, so you can focus on what matters most: your clients and business.

On one intuitive, integrated platform, advisors can open and fund accounts, trade and rebalance, report, and bill, at a fraction of today’s edging-ever-higher technology costs. 

Our dedicated customer support team is here to help advisors that are planning to make the leap from their wirehouse. Our team will help ensure a smooth transition with exceptional ongoing service.

To see how we’re helping RIAs streamline operations, reduce overhead, and elevate the client experience, book a call with one of our transitional specialists now.

*Altruist and its affiliates do not provide legal advice, so it’s important to check with a qualified professional for each state’s registration requirements.

Step-by-step advice on forming your RIA
Altruist’s COO guides you toward a successful RIA launch.


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