Sales Blog Financial Sales 101 Certified Financial Planner
The Certified Financial Planner (CFP) designation is a professional certification mark for financial planners conferred by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board) in the United States.
To receive authorization to use the designation, the candidate must meet education, examination, experience and ethics requirements, and pay an ongoing certification fee. To earn the CFP designation, candidates must meet several requirements—the first of which is the educational requirement, which requires candidates to have a bachelor's degree or higher from an accredited U.S. college or university. As a first step to the present CFP certification criteria, students must master a list of nearly 100 topics on integrated financial planning. The topics cover major planning areas such as:
General Principles of Finance and Financial Planning
Employee Benefits Planning
Investment and Securities Planning
State and Federal Income Tax Planning
Estate Tax, Gift Tax, and Transfer Tax Planning
Asset Protection Planning
To fulfill the education requirement, students are required to complete course training in the above listed topic areas in order to meet the first requirement to sit for the 10 hour CFP Board Certification Examination. A bachelor's degree (or higher), or its equivalent in any discipline, from an accredited college or university is required to attain CFP certification. The bachelor's degree requirement is a condition of initial certification; it is not a requirement to be eligible to take the CFP Certification Examination.
Individuals holding professional designations pre-approved by the CFP Board (such as PhDs in business and economics, attorneys, Certified Public Accountants (CPA), Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), Chartered Accountants (CA), Chartered Wealth Managers (AAFM), Chartered Life Underwriters (CLU), and Chartered Financial Analysts (CFA)) are entitled to register for and take the exam without having to complete the education requirements by using the CFP-board's "challenge" status.
International degrees may be substituted for a U.S. degree if they receive equivalency from a third-party organization.