Frequently Asked Questions:

What is FPSB?
Founded in 2004, Financial Planning Standards Board Ltd. (FPSB) is the global, nonprofit professional standards-setting organization for the financial planning profession. A nonprofit organization, FPSB works to promote global excellence in financial planning.

What is FPSB’s mission?
FPSB’s mission is to benefit the global community by establishing, upholding and promoting worldwide professional standards in financial planning. FPSB’s commitment to excellence is represented by the marks of professional distinction CFP, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER and CFP mark.

What is FPSB’s vision?
To establish financial planning as a global profession  and  the CFP marks as symbol of excellence in financial planning.

What does FPSB do?
FPSB creates internationally relevant, high-level professional standards for financial planning professionals so:

  • The public can identify qualified financial planners;
  • Practitioners can take the next step toward becoming trusted financial planning professionals; and
  • Consumers and regulators can have confidence in the financial planning profession.
  • FPSB also owns the CFP, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER and CFP mark  marks outside the United States.
  • In 2015, FPSB the number of CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER professionals reached a global high of 161,821 at year-end 2015.

How is FPSB governed?
FPSB’s Board of Directors consists of up to 12 voting directors and FPSB’s CEO, who is a non-voting director. One representative from each FPSB member organization offering CFP certification sits as a voting member of the FPSB Council, a global body that provides support and counsel to FPSB’s Board of Directors. Organizations that are preparing to offer CFP certification do not have voting privileges.

Where are FPSB’s Member organizations located?
FPSB has 26 nonprofit member organizations around the world that offer, or are preparing to offer, CFP certification, including: Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, Chinese Taipei, Colombia, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, the Netherlands, the People’s Republic of China, the Republic of Korea, Singapore, South Africa, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States.


What are the CFP Marks?
The CFP marks identify financial planning professionals who have earned CFP certification and are the only globally recognized mark of professionalism for financial planners. The CFP trademarks include CFP, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER and CFP mark.

Who owns the CFP Marks?
FPSB owns the CFP, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER and CFP mark  marks outside the United States.

Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board) owns the CFP Marks in the United States.

Who can use the CFP Marks?
Individuals who have earned their CFP certification and meet appropriate certification and renewal standards are authorized to use the CFP Marks only in the territory in which they are certified.

What is CFP certification?
CFP certification is a voluntary certification program that requires financial planning professionals to meet rigorous competency, ethics and professional practice standards to provide financial planning services to clients. CFP certification is the hallmark of global excellence in financial planning.

What is FPSB’s relationship to CFP Board?
FPSB and CFP Board are the two owners of the CFP Marks. FPSB owns the CFP Marks outside the United States, and guides the development and expansion of international standards for the CFP certification program and professional delivery of financial planning. As the U.S. marks owner, CFP Board develops and enforces standards for CFP certification within the United States.

What are FPSB’s global standards?
The international CFP certification programs are based on FPSB’s global framework for financial planning professionalism. FPSB has developed the following standards, frameworks and guidance documents to assist certifying bodies, financial planning professionals, and candidates for CFP certification worldwide:

  • Financial Planner Competency Profile
  • Financial Planner Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility
  • Financial Planning Practice Standards
  • Financial Planner Work Experience Standard
  • Financial Planner Continuing Professional Development Standard
  • Financial Planner Exam Standards
  • Financial Planner Assessment Framework
  • Financial Planning Curriculum Framework
  • Financial Plan Framework
  • Model Rules of Conduct for CFP Professionals
  • Guidance for Candidates Developing a Financial Plan
  • Guidance for Certifying Bodies Developing a Financial Plan Case Study
  • Guidance on Developing a Financial Planner Work Experience Portfolio
  • Guidance on Supervision of Financial Planner Work Experience
  • Guidance on Implementing FPSB’s Financial Planning Curriculum Framework

How does FPSB set its global standards?
FPSB develops standards via an extensive, consultative process that involves expert working group members consisting of educators, certification specialists, practicing financial planners and published authors on the subject of financial planning, along with FPSB Member organizations.

Media Contacts:
Kate Holmes, CFP
FPSB Director of Stakeholder Engagement

Noel Maye, CAE
Ph. +1-720-407-1909