The number of CFP® certificants currently stands at 62,000, but [Michael] Shaw[, managing director for professional standards and legal at CFP Board] says that number is increasing by 1,000 per year. All CFP[® professionals] must adhere to the CFP Board's Standards of Professional Conduct, which includes the Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility, Rules of Conduct and Financial Planning Practice Standards.
"We are seeing an increase in the number of investigations we open each year," says Shaw, referencing all disciplinary activity over the past few years. "The economy has something to do with it. When clients lose money, they complain," he says. "Some [complaints] are legitimate, some are not." The CFP Board "opened 1,500 investigations in 2010. The vast majority of those we closed; there's no probable cause to support a rule violation. We dismissed 1,200 with no probable cause to support a rule violation, [and of the 300 left] 103 went to hearing."
Shaw and Edward Mora, [CFP®,] chairman of CFP Board's Disciplinary and Ethics Commission, held a webinar recently in which they discussed bankruptcy situations and mitigating factors that might cause the CFP Board to step back from pursuing a disciplinary measure. Read more >
Elizabeth D. Festa
June 10, 2011