What's a CFP professional?

A CFPCM professional is an individual who has met the demanding standards required to pass the CFP qualification from FPSB (UK). This involves demonstrating their advanced level of Financial Planning technical knowledge and skills as well as practical experience. CFP professionals are committed to the highest standards of ethical and professional practice, adhering to IFP’s code of ethics and practice standards.

The Four Es that make a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERCM Professional

CFP professionals develop theoretical and practical Financial Planning knowledge by completing a comprehensive course of study and preparation.  

To become a CFP professional, candidates must pass FPSB UK’s Diploma in Financial Planning which has two components:

  • Principles of Financial Planning examination which tests your ability to apply your Financial Planning knowledge in an integrated format
  • A comprehensive Financial Plan written in response to a case study – similar to an undergraduate dissertation.

The process covers the general principles of Financial Planning, insurance planning and risk management, employee benefits planning, investment planning, tax planning, retirement planning and estate planning all at a very advanced level.

CFP practitioners must have a minimum of three years' experience working in the Financial Planning profession prior to earning the CFP mark. 

As a final step to certification, CFP practitioners must agree to abide by  IFP’s strict code of professional conduct through our Code of Ethics and Financial Planning Practice Standards. The Code of Ethics states that CFP professionals are to act with integrity, objectivity and always put the needs of the client first. 


It is necessary for every CFP certificant, once certified, to renew their certification every year. Those seeking to maintain their certification must attain a minimum of 50 hours of continuing professional development (CPD) in order to keep up to date with changes and better serve their clients. To continue using the designation you must renew your membership on an annual basis and adhere to all the IFP's requirements for membership.  If you wish to lapse the designation you can do this for a period of up to five years (see below).  

Application to rejoin or reinstate CFP professional designation within five years: No reassessment will be required as long as the individual can provide suitable CPD records. If CPD records are not available and there is no valid reason then the process for rejoining after five years will apply.

Application to rejoin or reinstate CFP professional designation after five years: The individual will undergo an interview with a Director of the IFP and will be required to pass the Principles of Financial Planning examination.