These Code of Ethics' Principles express the profession's recognition of its responsibilities to the public, to clients, to colleagues and to employers. They apply to all CFP Board designees and provide guidance to them in the performance of their professional services.
Principle 1 - Integrity
Provide professional services with integrity.
Integrity demands honesty and candor which must not be subordinated to personal gain and advantage. Certificants are placed in positions of trust by clients, and the ultimate source of that trust is the certificant’s personal integrity. Allowance can be made for innocent error and legitimate differences of opinion, but integrity cannot co-exist with deceit or subordination of one’s principles.
Principle 2 - Objectivity
Provide professional services objectively.
Objectivity requires intellectual honesty and impartiality. Regardless of the particular service rendered or the capacity in which a certificant functions, certificants should protect the integrity of their work, maintain objectivity and avoid subordination of their judgment.
Principle 3 - Competence
Maintain the knowledge and skill necessary to provide professional
Competence means attaining and maintaining an adequate level of knowledge and skill, and application of that knowledge and skill in providing services to clients. Competence also includes the wisdom to recognize the limitations of that knowledge and when consultation with other professionals is appropriate or referral to other professionals necessary. Certificants make a continuing commitment to learning and professional improvement.
Principle 4 - Fairness
Be fair and reasonable in all professional relationships. Disclose
conflicts of interest.
Fairness requires impartiality, intellectual honesty and disclosure of material conflicts of interest. It involves a subordination of one’s own feelings, prejudices and desires so as to achieve a proper balance of conflicting interests. Fairness is treating others in the same fashion that you would want to be treated.
Principle 5 - Confidentiality
Protect the confidentiality of all client information.
Confidentiality means ensuring that information is accessible only to those authorized to have access. A relationship of trust and confidence with the client can only be built upon the understanding that the client’s information will remain confidential.
Principle 6 - Professionalism
Act in a manner that demonstrates exemplary professional conduct.
Professionalism requires behaving with dignity and courtesy to clients, fellow professionals, and others in business-related activities. Certificants cooperate with fellow certificants to enhance and maintain the profession’s public image and improve the quality of services.
Principle 7 - Diligence
Provide professional services diligently.
Diligence is the provision of services in a reasonably prompt and thorough manner, including the proper planning for, and supervision of, the rendering of professional services.
Part 2 - Rules Relating to the Principle of Integrity
Financial AdvisorThe workload doesn't end with your exam. Find out how to keep up your CFP credential.
Financial AdvisorTo aid managers in understanding the requirements for ethical and professional behavior, we offer some basic guidelines.
InvestingThe term accounting principles refers to rules and guidelines companies use to help them record their business and financial transactions.
Financial AdvisorHere are three reasons why financial professionals should absolutely integrate technology into business efforts over the next 12 months.
Personal FinanceYou need to combining your ability to analyze numbers with skills such as communication, project management and relationship development.
RetirementAdvance your career and gain clientele by adding a few choice certifications.
Personal FinanceRegulators, sales people and clients all look to communications professionals to help them navigate the markets.
Small BusinessIf you work in the financial industry, the secret to keeping clients happy is to be consistent.
Personal FinanceAs the economy remains in a period of sustainable recovery, the financial services industry expects to benefit.
Managing WealthInvestment managers should always act to benefit the client. Learn what actions managers should take on a client's behalf.