Become a CFP® Professional



The CFP® Certification Examination is offered three times per year, in 8-day testing windows in March, July and November.

The CFP® Exam consists of two 3-hour testing sessions separated by a scheduled 40-minute break. A 7-hour appointment is scheduled to allow time for check-in, and security procedures.

Candidates select their test day (Tuesday-Tuesday) and test site location from among Prometric’s network of testing sites. In the U.S. there are more than 250 convenient locations. 

Upcoming Exam Calendar

Education Verification
Nov. 5-12, 2019 July 18, 2019 Oct. 9, 2019 Oct. 22, 2019
Mar. 10-17, 2020 Nov. 14, 2019 Feb. 11, 2020 Feb. 25, 2020

*Candidates may reschedule within the existing as late as five days prior to their scheduled appointment, subject to seat availability and rescheduling fees.

Beginning with the March 2016 CFP® Exam, a new exam blueprint is in effect that incorporates the findings from the 2015 Job Task Analysis.


Candidates are required to complete the Education coursework requirement for CFP® certification prior to sitting for the computer-based exam.  Candidates may, however, register for the exam and secure a seat prior to completing their educational program.

Scheduling is on a first-come, first-serve basis. Candidates are encouraged to register for the exam 60 days or more in advance to help secure their preferred testing date and testing site location.

All exam registrations are contingent upon CFP Board receiving verification of completion of the Education coursework requirement by the Verification Deadline, which is 30 days prior to the onset of each window. If verification is not received by the deadline, candidate eligibility for that exam is withdrawn, the reserved seat is released and a $100 postponement fee is applied. 

The coursework requirement can be met in several ways, including completing a CFP Board-Registered Program, completing equivalent coursework subject to CFP Board's Transcript Review process, or having one of the designations, credentials or degrees pre-approved by CFP Board.

Registration Process

IMPORTANT: You can now register for the CFP® Certification Examination prior to completing the Education requirement. CFP Board, however, must receive verification of your completion by the Education Verification Deadline. If verification is not received by deadline, you will be de-registered, your seat will become available to other candidates, and you will be charged a $100 postponement fee.

2019 Exam Registration Pricing and Deadline Schedule

A new pricing and registration deadline structure took effect with the March 2016 CFP® Exam. The registration period for each exam administration has been extended to approximately three months, and that period is now broken into three phases: Early Bird Registration, Regular Registration, and Late Registration.

Candidates are encouraged to register as early as possible to benefit from the Early Bird Registration price and for the best date and site availability.

November 2019 Exam Registration Schedule

Type Opens Closes Fee
Early Bird Jul. 18, 2019 Sep. 10, 2019 $625
Standard Sep. 11, 2019 Oct. 9, 2019 $725
Late Registration Oct. 10, 2019 Oct. 22, 2019 $825


Create an online account: If this is your first time applying for the CFP® Certification Examination, you will need to create a secure online account with CFP Board and then log in to start the registration process.

Create an Account

Login to your account: If you have previously registered for the exam or have already created your online account, you may simply log in to your secure CFP Board account to start the registration process.


If you have any questions about registering for the CFP® Certification Examination, please contact CFP Board at 800-487-1497 or examinations@cfpboard.org.

Verify Education Requirement

View acceptable qualifying documentation for the education coursework requirement


Veteran Affairs

The fee for the CFP® Certification Examination is eligible for Veteran Affairs (VA) reimbursement through the License and Certification Approval System (LACAS) under United States Code Title 38, Chapter 3689. Go to www.gibill.va.gov/pamphlets/lcweb.htm (Licensing and Certification section) for more information.

Exam Locations

The CFP® exam is administered in more than 265 locations in the U.S.

Testing site locations

International Test Sites

CFP Board will establish international test sites for the CFP® Certification Examination on a case-by-case basis for a site fee of $1,475 in addition to the regular exam fee.

Education Verification, Withdraw Requests, & Postponement

(Deadline to request a withdrawal/postponement: twelve days before the start of the testing window)

Education Verification
CFP Board must receive verification of completion of the Education coursework requirement for CFP® certification by the Education Verification Deadline. Failure to meet the deadline results in de-registration, release of the seat to other candidates, and postponement. The postponement fee is $100.

Failure to Schedule
Candidates who are fully registered with CFP Board (i.e. exam application completed, exam fee paid, and education verification completed), but have not scheduled an appointment with Prometric will have until the withdrawal/postponement deadline (5 days prior to the start of the testing window) to secure an exam seat with Prometric. Failure to secure an exam site with Prometric will result in de-registration and postponement. The fee for postponement is $100. 

Postponement to the Next Exam Window
The postponement fee is $100. Candidates may postpone an exam only once per registration. The subsequent exam appointment must be rescheduled by the next two exam administrations testing window. Candidates who would like to postpone their exam a second time must withdraw their application. Please note that the postponement deadline is always 12 days prior to the first day of the exam window. For the November 2019 exam the deadline is October 24, 2019.

Withdraw Completely from the CFP® Examination
Candidates who decide not to take the exam after registering and wish to withdraw their application are eligible to receive a $200 refund. Candidates who withdraw their application may register for a future exam. Please note that the withdraw deadline is always 12 days prior to the first day of the exam window. For the November 2019 exam the deadline is October 24, 2019.

Rescheduling within Current Exam Window
Through Prometric, candidates are permitted to reschedule their exam date, test site location, and scheduled test start times within their registered exam window. No charges are applied for scheduling changes 30 days or more in advance of the scheduled exam appointment with Prometric. A $100 scheduling change fee is applied for changes made between 5 to 29 days in advance of the scheduled exam. No changes are permitted less than 5-days in advance of their scheduled appointment.

If you are moving your exam date from one exam administration to a future exam administration, you are subject to either the Withdraw or Postponement policy. The Reschedule Policy is not applicable as this policy only concerns rescheduling an exam appointment during the same testing window.

Important Note: In order to Withdraw or Postpone your exam appointment, candidates must contact CFP Board at examinations@cfpboard.org . Prometric will not be able to cancel your exam appointment if contacted.

Medical or Other Emergencies 

Failure to Appear

If you fail to appear for the exam, you will forfeit the entire exam fee. 

Waiver Request

CFP Board will consider waiving the fee forfeiture in the case of a medical or other emergency. Your request for such a waiver must be made in writing and supported by verifying documentation from a third party. For example, in the case of a medical emergency, a written statement from your physician which clearly states that you were physically unable to appear for the exam due to personal or immediate family medical issues is required. If another type of emergency, then you must provide third party verification as to the reason you were unable to sit for the scheduled exam.

Your request must be received within 10 business days after the close of the exam window. Requests received after the 10 business day timeframe, or not supported by verifying documentation, will not be reviewed.

Retake Policy

If you fail the CFP® Certification Examination and elect to retest, you are required to retake the entire exam. You will have to pay the current exam fee for each retake.

Effective January 2012, CFP Board has implemented the following limits on the number of times an individual can attempt the CFP® Certification Examination:

  • Individuals may attempt the exam a lifetime maximum of five times. (Individuals who have attempted the exam four or more times prior to January 1, 2012, will be permitted a maximum of two additional attempts.)
  • Individuals may attempt the exam a maximum of three times within a 24-month period. If an individual attempts the exam on three successive administrations, a one year sit-out period (three exam administrations) is required before registering for another attempt.

Policy Exceptions

CFP Board establishes and administers standards for financial planning professionals for the benefit of the public. CFP Board has established policies and requirements for CFP® certification and enforces those policies and requirements in a consistent manner. Exceptions to established policies and requirements are rarely granted. CFP® certificants and applicants for CFP® certification who wish to request exceptions to specific policies or requirements of CFP Board may complete and submit a Policy Exception Request Form. Please allow 7 – 10 days for a response to your request.

Exceptions are not granted for initial certification requirements. One initial certification requirement will not substitute for another.  For example, experience will not substitute for the degree requirement. 

All applicants must:
• Meet the education coursework requirement
• Have a bachelor’s degree or higher
• Pass the CFP® Exam
• Meet the experience requirement

The request will be reviewed by CFP Board’s Managing Director, Professional Practice. CFP Board will issue a determination letter no later than 10 days from the date the request is received.  In most circumstances, CFP Board will send the determination letter via email.  If requested, CFP Board will mail the determination letter.
Individuals may choose to appeal the decision stated in the determination letter by submitting a written appeal to CFP Board’s Policy Exception Committee, which is made up of CFP Board’s Chief Executive Officer, General Counsel, and a rotating senior-level staff appointee. Any appeal must be received at CFP Board no later than 30 days from receipt of the determination letter. The Policy Exception Committee meets four times each year, once per quarter. The decision of the Policy Exception Committee is final.


Download the Policy Exception Request Form

Once you have completed the form and assembled all materials you wish to have considered with your policy exception request, email or fax your request to CFP Board at:

Submit completed Policy Exception Request Forms to:

Email – policyexceptions@cfpboard.org

Fax  - 202-379-2299

Review and Appeals

For security reasons, exam material is not available for review. Neither the staff of Prometric nor of CFP Board will discuss specific exam questions. You may submit your comments about exam questions in writing via email to examinations@cfpboard.org or by mail to: 

CFP Board
Attn: Exam Administrator
1425 K Street NW #800
Washington, DC 20005

All comments about exam questions must be received by CFP Board by midnight Eastern Time on the Wednesday following the close of the examination window. The Council on Examinations will review comments relating to the exam but will not make written responses to comments.

Appeals of exam policies are handled by CFP Board's Policy Exception Committee. CFP® professionals and applicants for CFP® certification may complete and submit a Policy Exception Request Form

Examination Results Appeal Process

The CFP® Exam is scored through Prometric’s computer-based testing software with a high degree of accuracy. It is highly unlikely that an exam result will change from “fail” to “pass” following a manual rescore after the results are released.

However, should candidates determine that they want their examination manually rescored, they may submit a request within 30 days of the final result release date. There is a $150 fee for manual re-scoring. Written requests for a manual re-score should be emailed to examinations@cfpboard.org.

Requests must include your name, the examination date, the fee payment information, and the specific reason for requesting the manual re-score. Requests without the fee will be returned to you, and requests submitted more than 30 days after the release of the final results will not be processed.

The re-scoring process may take up to 30 days to complete. After the exam has been re-scored, candidates will receive an email confirming the re-score outcome. Note that candidates will not receive a further breakdown of their exam result upon receiving the re-score outcome confirmation.

In the event that your exam result changes from a “fail” to a “pass”, you will be reimbursed your re-scoring fee. 

Exam Dates


CFP® Certification Examination
November 5-12, 2019

Most Recent Exam:

CFP® Certification Examination
July 9-16, 2019

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Find An Education Program

Employment for personal financial advisors is projected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations through 2024. Bureau of Labor Statistics

In a March 2012 survey of American consumers, 60% indicated they would benefit from the counsel of a financial planner or advisor.

If you hold one of several degrees, licenses or credentials, you can take the CFP® Exam after completing a single capstone course.

Classroom or online learning? Full-time or part-time studies? There are CFP Board-Registered Programs designed to meet your needs. 

Achieve the certification that is rapidly becoming the industry standard: CFP® certification.

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If you're up for the challenge of helping people achieve their financial goals, financial planning is the career for you.