TORONTO, ON – November 14, 2017 – Financial Planning Standards Council (FPSC) is pleased to see the Ontario government’s commitment to move forward with legislation to restrict the title “Financial Planner” in today’s 2017 Fall Economic Statement.
Of significant note, the Ontario government reiterated its pledge to restrict use of the title “Financial Planner” to those who demonstrate their proficiency by obtaining an appropriate financial planning credential. The government also affirmed its intention to restrict the use of other titles related to financial planning, which too often confuse and mislead consumers.
“FPSC has long advocated for regulatory standards to ensure anyone who calls themselves a ‘Financial Planner’ is qualified, ethical, overseen and accountable for their professional conduct,” says FPSC President and CEO Cary List. “We are pleased the government is committed to moving forward with restrictions regarding who may use the title or hold out as a ‘Financial Planner’. We look forward to working with the Ontario government and other stakeholders to establish a suitable model for determining what constitutes an appropriate financial planning credential.”
Today’s announcement follows from recommendations of the Ontario Expert Committee to Consider Financial Advisory and Financial Planning Policy Alternatives. In its Final Report, the Expert Committee recommended that anyone using the title or holding out as a “Financial Planner” should be required to meet strict proficiency requirements and hold an appropriate financial planning credential, issued and overseen by an independent credentialing body. FPSC continues to support this approach.
“In keeping with the guiding principles set out by the Expert Committee’s Final Report, it is critical that any determination of an appropriate credential be based not only on a rigorous review of the credential itself, but also on a rigorous assessment of the body conferring the credential,” says List.
“The current lack of regulatory standards for financial planning creates confusion and undermines the ability of consumers to make informed choices about their financial health,” says List. “With careful implementation, these new requirements will create much-needed clarity and provide Ontarians with the confidence of knowing that any ‘Financial Planner’ they entrust will be someone who has demonstrated appropriate competence, is ethically sound, is overseen by experts who represent the public interest, and is accountable for their professional conduct.”
While FPSC is pleased to see the government remains focused on resolving this longstanding consumer protection issue, much work remains to be done. FPSC looks forward to working closely and cooperatively with the Ontario government and other regulatory and industry stakeholders to achieve effective implementation of a solution as quickly as possible.
About Financial Planning Standards Council
A professional standards-setting and certification body working in the public interest, FPSC’s purpose is to drive value and instill confidence in financial planning. FPSC ensures those it certifies―Certified Financial Planner® 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. With FPSC’s formal partnership with the Institut québécois de planification financière (IQPF), which is the only organization authorized to certify Financial Planners in Québec, there are more than 23,500 Financial Planners in Canada who have met, and continue to meet, FPSC’s standards. More information is available at FPSC.ca and FinancialPlanningForCanadians.ca.
For more information, please contact:
Financial Planning Standards Council
416.593.8587, ext. 232 or 1.800.305.9886