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CFP Board wants all CFP® professionals to have a thorough understanding of the Standards of Professional Conduct. Questions not answered in these FAQs may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org for consideration and possible inclusion in future revisions of this document.
Question 9-1: Is it possible for a client of a CFP® professional to terminate the financial planning engagement with the CFP® professional and still receive other services from the CFP® professional?
It depends on whether a CFP® professional is providing the future services and the nature of those services. In general, once a financial planning relationship with a CFP® professional has been established, all future services provided by the CFP® professional to the client are likely to be considered by CFP Board to be part of the financial planning process. It is important for CFP® professionals and clients to work together to develop a mutual understanding of the scope of the engagement. One important factor CFP Board will consider when determining whether activities are material elements of financial planning is the client’s understanding and intent in engaging the CFP® professional. For example, a client can enter into a written agreement with the CFP® professional to limit the financial planning engagement to the first four steps of the financial planning process, i.e., the engagement ends with the CFP® professional’s recommendations. Whether subsequent interactions with the client constitute financial planning will depend on whether such services fall within CFP Board’s definition of financial planning or material elements of financial planning. The facts and circumstances of each situation are factors in CFP Board’s determination of whether the CFP® professional engaged in financial planning or the material elements of financial planning.
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CFP Board welcomes questions about specific aspects of the Standards of Professional Conduct and their application to specific situations.
CFP Board will consider all questions submitted and draft a response where it determines that interpretation of the Standards is needed. For responses that it believes would be helpful to all CFP® professionals, CFP Board will publish its response in CFP Board’s newsletters and on CFP Board’s website.
Send your questions and requests for guidance documents to CFP Board at email@example.com.
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