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Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and federally registered CFP (with flame design) in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete initial and ongoing certification requirements.

What is CFP?

The CFP marks represent a Certified Financial Planner designation. An individual who has earned these marks has met the education, examination, experience and ethics standards established by the Certified Financial Planners Board of Standards (CFP Board). Therefore, a financial planner who has earned the CFP marks should be distinguished from a financial planner who has not. Consumers need to be aware that there is nothing preventing a person from declaring themselves a "Financial Planner", and it is therefore incumbent upon the consumer to differentiate between a planner who has earned the marks and one who hasn't.

If a financial planner has earned the right to use the CFP marks, this means that he or she has met the following requirements:

Candidates must also adhere to the CFP Board's Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility and Financial Planning Practice Standards.

Additionally, once certified, CFP certificants must fulfill a biennial continuing education requirement to stay up-to-date on planning strategies and financial trends affecting their clients.