The CFP® designation is authorized by Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board). The mission of CFP Board is to benefit the public by granting the CFP® certification and upholding it as the recognized standard of excellence for competent and ethical personal financial planning. The CFP® certification marks identify professionals who have met the high standards of competency and ethics established and enforced by CFP Board. CFP Board’s Standards of Professional Conduct require CFP® professionals to act in their clients’ best interests.

The requirements for certification are:

1. Education – holds a baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university and has completed a comprehensive course of study at a college or university offering a financial planning curriculum approved by CFP Board.

2. Examination – CFP® professionals must pass the comprehensive CFP® Certification Exam, which tests their abilities to apply financial planning knowledge to real-life situations.

3. Experience – CFP® professionals complete several years of experience related to delivering financial planning services to clients prior to earning the right to use the CFP® certification trademarks.

Once an individual becomes certified by CFP Board, they are also subject to addtional requirements such as meeting minimum continuing education requirements and refraining from committing illegal and unethical acts.