The highly regarded CFP® mark represents a strong grounding in financial planning, insurance planning, income taxation, retirement expertise, investments and estate planning. In addition, a final comprehensive exam insures the ability to put this broad knowledge into practice. (CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ Practitioner)
Education - The CFP®practitioners must develop their theoretical and practical financial planning knowledge by completing a comprehensive course of study at a college or university offering a financial planning curriculum approved by CFP® Board. The professional must show the attainment of certain professional designations or academic degrees (four-year college degree).
Examination - CFP® practitioners must pass a comprehensive two-day, 10-hour CFP® Certification Examination that tests their ability to apply financial planning knowledge in an integrated format. Based on regular research of what planners do, the exam covers financial planning process, tax planning, employee benefits and retirement planning, estate planning, investment management, and insurance.
Experience - CFP® practitioners must have three years' minimum experience in the financial planning process prior to earning the right to use the CFP® certification marks. As a result, CFP® practitioners possess financial counseling skills in addition to financial planning knowledge.
Ethics - As a final step to certification, CFP® practitioners agree to abide by the CFP Board's Standards of Professional Conduct, which sets forth their ethical responsibilities to the public, clients and employers. CFP Board also performs a background check during this process, and each individual must disclose any investigations or legal proceedings related to their professional or business conduct.