Financial Planning Standards Council

Financial Planning Standards Council

April 23, 2015 17:52 ET

FPSC Welcomes Ontario's Appointment of Expert Committee to Investigate Merits of Tailored Regulation of Financial Planners

Increased clarity is vital to protect consumers

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - April 23, 2015) - Financial Planning Standards Council (FPSC) welcomes the continued interest in today's Ontario budget of the need for tailored regulation of financial planners and is encouraged by the appointment of an expert committee that will begin the study process and provide the government with options if it determines regulation is required.

"FPSC continues to be pleased by the government's intention to move forward in investigating the need for tailored regulation of financial planners," says Cary List, FPSC President & CEO. "We look forward to offering our leadership and expertise on this important subject in order to safeguard and enhance the financial well-being of all Ontarians."

Today's budget announcement of the appointment of an expert committee follows the government's previous commitment to investigate the merits of proceeding with more tailored regulation of financial planners, introduced in the 2013 Fall Economic Statement and outlined as a continuing priority in the 2014 Fall Economic Statement. The government held industry consultations on the subject in January 2014, which included recommendations from FPSC and its partners in the Financial Planning Coalition, formed in 2009 to establish a professional framework for those holding themselves out as financial planners.

FPSC and the Institut québécois de planification financière (IQPF), the two organizations that establish and maintain standards for the financial planning profession in Canada, recently came together to establish the first ever unified set of financial planning standards in Canada. The Canadian Financial Planning Definitions, Standards & Competencies are an important resource for consumers and industry, and a vital first step toward elevating financial planning as a distinct professional practice in Canada, according to List, who has dedicated the last decade working to ensure that Certified financial planner® certification is recognized as the standard for financial planning and to see financial planning recognized in law as a distinct profession.

There are currently more than 9,000 Certified financial planner® professionals in Ontario who are among 17,000 across Canada and part of a network of 150,000 worldwide.

"The ongoing lack of clarity in the current environment as to who is permitted to hold themselves out as a financial planner leaves Ontarians extremely vulnerable," says List. "Today's consumers are in the most precarious financial position we have experienced in decades, yet outside of Quebec, there are no legislated competence or qualification requirements in Canada regarding who may call themselves financial planners or offer financial planning services. It's the wild west."

About Financial Planning Standards Council

Financial Planning Standards Council (FPSC®) is a not-for-profit organization which develops, promotes and enforces professional standards in financial planning through Certified Financial Planner® certification. FPSC's purpose is to instill confidence in the financial planning profession. As a standards-setting and certification body, FPSC ensures CFP® professionals and FPSC Level 1™ Certificants in Financial Planning meet appropriate standards of competence and professionalism through rigorous requirements of education, examination, experience and ethics. More information is at www.fpsc.ca.

About CFP® certification

CFP certification, long considered the mark of the professional financial planner, provides confidence to Canadians that their financial planner has the necessary knowledge, skills, abilities and ethics for professional financial planning. There are 17,000 CFP professionals across Canada, part of a global community of more than 150,000 worldwide. CFP professionals demonstrate their financial planning competence through extensive education; a rigorous, comprehensive national examination process; continuous professional development requirements; and accountability to FPSC for ethical conduct, standards of practice and competence. More information is at http://www.fpsc.ca/about-cfp-mark.

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