In order to sensibly manage the 49,500 authorisation applications, the FCA wrote to all firms holding an Interim Permission and allocated them a “landing slot” to apply within.
This is a three-month calendar window during which a firm must submit their application for authorisation in respect of credit-related regulated activities (see ‘Full or Limited Permission'). The first application period started on 1 October 2014 and the final period ends on 31 March 2016. Any firm which fails to submit its application within its three-month application period will lose its Interim Permission, which will lapse, and the firm will need to submit a fresh application for authorisation. It will not be able to continue carrying out regulated consumer credit activities until such time as its application is approved, which may take some time given the volume of applications the FCA is expected to receive.
Application periods were allocated to firms according to the business activities which they selected when notifying the FCA of their desire to obtain an Interim Permission. These activities were then put into ‘batches' with firms carrying out the same or similar activities, prioritised according to the FCA's own priorities and in some cases split by region, with regional groups being determined according to the UK postcode applicable to the firm's principal place of business.