The Financial Planning Association, the membership organization for Certified Financial Planners, has launched a multi-year advocacy campaign to achieve title protection for the term “financial planner.”
“Financial planning is a true and noble profession that must require practitioners to achieve and maintain standards for competency and ethics,” said Dennis J. Moore, 2022 FPA president, in a statement. “The legal recognition of the term ‘financial planner’ through title protection is an acknowledgment that anyone proclaiming to be a financial planner meets minimum standards that protect consumers and advance the financial planning profession.”
There are currently no state or federal rules governing who can call themselves a “financial planner” or “financial advisor.” According to an internal survey conducted by the FPA, 78% of members support title protection.
The organization believes title protection is necessary to distinguish financial planners from other professionals who may not even be providing financial planning services. In addition, title protection will create minimum standards for financial planning professionals, “without creating an unnecessary regulatory burden for those meeting the standards.” The legal protection will also help consumers find qualified financial planning professionals, and help establish it as a distinct profession.
Ontario, Canada’s most populated province, recently moved to pass legislation that would legally protect the titles of “financial advisor” and “financial planner” and set minimums standards for their use.