The CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ program is administered by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. Those with the CFP® certification have demonstrated competency in all areas of finance related to financial planning. Candidates complete studies on over 100 topics, including stocks, bonds, taxes, insurance, retirement planning and estate planning. In addition to passing the CFP certification exam, candidates must also complete qualifying work experience and agree to adhere to the CFP Board’s code of ethics and professional responsibility and financial planning standards.

The Chartered Special Needs Consultant® (ChSNC®) program teaches experienced financial professionals the technical and collaborative skills necessary to help clients make plans for the future security of a loved one who has special needs. ChSNC® candidates must complete two self-study courses and one live webinar capstone. The required courses include: Introduction to Disability, Legal and Financial Issues for Special Needs Families and Financial Planning for Special Needs Families. Use of the ChSNC® credential requires an extensive financial planning background. All designees using the mark with the public must have also completed either the CLU®, ChFC®, CFP®, PFS credential, or master’s degree in either financial planning or an equivalent area of study. Designees must adhere to The American College’s Code of Ethics.

The Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA®) charter is a professional designation established in 1962 and awarded by CFA Institute. To earn the CFA charter, candidates must pass three sequential, six-hour examinations over two to four years. The three levels of the CFA Program test a wide range of investment topics, including ethical and professional standards, fixed-income analysis, alternative and derivative investments, and port-folio management and wealth planning. In addition, CFA charter holders must have at least four years of acceptable professional experience in the investment decision making process and must commit to abide by, and annually reaffirm, their adherence to the CFA Institute Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct.

The Certified Divorce Financial Analyst® (CDFA®) professional program is administered by the Institute for Divorce Financial Analysts (IDFA). IDFA provides specialized training to accounting, financial, and legal professionals in the field of pre-divorce financial planning. The CDFA designation is available to individuals who have a minimum of three years’ experience as a financial professional, accountant, or matrimonial lawyer. To acquire the designation, a candidate must successfully pass all exams (modules) with a minimum score of 70% for each one and be in good standing with their Broker Dealer (if applicable) and the FINRA/SEC or other licensing or regulatory agency.

The CHARTERED SRI COUNSELOR™, CSRIC™ program is administered by the College For Financial Planning. Individuals who hold the CSRIC designation have completed a course of study encompassing the history, definitions, trends, portfolio construction principles, fiduciary responsibilities, and best practices for sustainable, responsible, and impact (SRI) investing. Additionally, individuals must pass an end-of-course examination that tests their ability to synthesize complex concepts and apply theoretical concepts to real-life situations. The program was developed in partnership with US SIF, the Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment; the leading voice advancing sustainable, responsible, and impact investing across all asset classes in the United States. Designees renew their designation every two-years by completing 16 hours of continuing education, reaffirming adherence to the Standards of Professional conduct and complying with self-disclosure requirements.

An enrolled agent (EA) is a person who has earned the privilege of representing taxpayers before the Internal Revenue Service by either passing a three-part comprehensive IRS test covering individual and business tax returns, or through experience as a former IRS employee. Enrolled agent status is the highest credential the IRS awards. Individuals who obtain this elite status must adhere to ethical standards and complete 72 hours of continuing education courses every three years.

The Certified Senior Advisor is a designation granted by the Society of Certified Senior Advisors (SCSA). The CSA designation requires that the candidate meet eligibility requirements established by the SCSA ( including, pass a criminal background check, pass the CSA designation exam, and pass the CSA Roles, Rules, and Responsibility Ethics Exam. Continued use of the designation requires 30 hours of continuing education every three years and reaffirmation of the pledge to uphold the CSA Code of Professional Responsibility. The CSA designation supplements other professional licenses, credentials and education with knowledge about aging and working with seniors. The CSA designation alone does not imply expertise in financial matters. Certified Senior Advisors (CSAs) have supplemented their individual professional licenses, credentials and education with knowledge about aging and working with seniors. It is recommended that you verify the validity of any professionals’ credentials in which you conduct business and be sure you completely understand what those licenses, credentials and education signify. The CSA certification alone does not imply expertise in financial, health or social matters. For more details visit: