New Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct

For CFP® Professionals

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New Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct

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CFP Board's new Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct (“Code and Standards”), which sets forth the ethical standards for CFP® professionals, replaces CFP Board’s current Code of Ethics, Rules of Conduct, Financial Planning Practice Standards and Terminology, effective October 1, 2019.

Watch a brief video to learn more about the new Code and Standards. 

The new Code and Standards includes a range of important changes, including expanding the application of the fiduciary standard that requires CFP® professionals to act in the best interest of the client at all times when providing financial advice. Through the new Code and Standards, CFP Board is advancing the role and value of the financial planning profession with a broader fiduciary standard that elevates public trust in CFP® professionals.


Documents and Resources


New Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct (PDF)

Side-by-Side Comparison of the New Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct to the Current Standards of Professional Conduct (PDF)

Redline Comparing the New Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct to the Revised Proposal Released in December 2017 (PDF)

Commentary on New Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct (PDF)

Brochure: Highlights of CFP Board's New Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct (PDF)

Summary Video: CFP Board's CEO Kevin Keller and General Counsel Leo Rydzewski discuss details and insights about the new Code and Standards.



Public Forums


CFP Board is hosting a series of public forums around the country, focused on educating CFP® professionals, firms, and the public on the new Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct.

Learn more


Enforcement


CFP Board’s ethical standards for CFP® professionals are actively enforced through an investigative and disciplinary process described in the Disciplinary Rules and Procedures and Appeal Rules and Procedures. CFP Board is committed to maintaining a disciplinary process that is fair to the CFP® professionals whose conduct comes under scrutiny and one that is credible to the public.

Learn about CFP Board’s Enforcement Processes


Background


On March 29, 2018, CFP Board announced that its Board of Directors unanimously approved a new Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct (“Code and Standards”), which sets forth the ethical standards for CFP® professionals. The new Code and Standards replaces CFP Board’s current Code of Ethics, Rules of Conduct, Financial Planning Practice Standards and Terminology, effective October 1, 2019. 

The new Code and Standards reflects the conclusion of CFP Board’s latest review of these standards to maintain the value, integrity and relevance of the CFP® certification. This deliberative and thorough process spanned more than two years, starting with the December 2015 formation of the Commission on Standards, and including active outreach to gather input on proposed revisions from CFP® professionals and the public. CFP Board held more 17 public forums; convened two public comment periods; received more than 1,500 written comments and hundreds of oral comments; conducted a wide-ranging survey; and provided other opportunities for the public to provide feedback and input. 

During the time between the announcement date and the effective date of the new Code and Standards, CFP Board will undertake a thorough process to educate and inform CFP® professionals on the new Code and Standards.

In June 2018, CFP Board announced the formation of a Standards Resource Commission to help develop resources that will provide guidance to CFP® professionals and their firms on the new Code and Standards. Comprised of individuals from financial services firms and members of the public, the commission will help with the development of materials such as fact sheets, FAQs, videos, webinars and other documents. From September 2018 through December 2019, members of the commission are participating in a series of public forums around the country, focused on educating CFP® professionals, firms, and the public on the new Code and Standards.

The new Code and Standards is integrated into the curriculum for all pre-approved CFP Board Ethics Continuing Education programs (a requirement for CFP® certification renewal), beginning October 1, 2018 – a full year prior to the effective date of the new Code and Standards.

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