The Canadian Securities Institute® (CSI) is the most experienced and trusted financial educator endorsed by regulatory authorities across Canada.
When investors choose to work with a Personal Financial Planner PFP®, they can feel confident knowing these professionals are held to high standards enforced through CSI’s rigorous process - and our ISO 17024 accreditation.
All PFP® designation holders agree to abide by the PFP® Code of Ethics, both when applying for the designation and when renewing it annually. Abiding by the Code means a PFP® commits to maintaining a high level of professionalism when dealing with the public.
CSI is committed to overseeing the ethical standards required of its designation holders. We monitor adherence to the PFP® Code of Ethics through reviews, periodic audits of the designation holder’s annual commitment and declaration requirements, handling public complaints and tracking news and regulatory reports.
Read the PFP® Code of Ethics.
Ethical Misconduct Process
Before filing a formal complaint with CSI, we strongly recommend trying to resolve the issue by speaking directly with the PFP® in question.
Those who cannot come to a resolution should contact CSI at our special PFP® complaints email address. Complaint submissions should include:
- Details of the alleged Code of Ethics violation
- Sufficient background information/documentation to support the allegation
- Name and contact details of the complainant
CSI does not recommend sharing confidential financial information through email.
Allegations of violation of the PFP® Code of Ethics are dealt with by the Designation Ethics Committee according to the CSI Ethical Misconduct Process. If the Committee determines a violation occurred, a disciplinary sanction is recommended. The PFP® holder may accept the recommended sanction or request a hearing.
Disciplinary sanctions could include:
- A written reprimand from the Chair of the PFP® Advisory Council
- Notifying the appropriate regulatory body for possible further investigation
- Publicizing the violation on the PFP® public website and/or newsletter
- Recording the violation in the PFP® designation holder’s record
- Requiring the PFP® to complete a supplementary ethics course(s)
- Requiring the PFP® to complete an additional professional development course(s)
- Suspending the PFP®’s licence and use of the PFP® Certification Mark (for a specific period, indefinitely with conditions for reinstatement, or permanently)
- Imposing other measures deemed appropriate by the Designation Ethics Committee
Auditing Process - Work Experience
PFP® applicants must meet a 3-year work experience requirement prior to being granted the designation. CSI retains the right to assess all PFP® applicants for compliance with the experience requirements.
- A request for confirmation will be sent (by email or telephone) to the verifier provided by the applicant on his or her application form
- A copy of the request will be sent to the applicant so they know they are being assessed
- Contacts will be asked to provide confirmation within 30 days of the request
- If the confirmation is not received, CSI will notify the applicant and a copy of the notification will also be sent to the work experience contact
- If a response is not received within 30 days, the applicant and the verifier will be contacted again
Misstated or fraudulent reporting of experience will be reported to the Designation Ethics Committee as a violation of the PFP® Code of Ethics and will be considered according to the Ethical Misconduct Process.
Auditing Process - Continuing Education
CSI will conduct periodic audits of PFP®s upon renewal of their designation to assess compliance with continuing education (CE) requirements. Designation holders must retain supporting documents to confirm completion of CE credits.
- PFP®s selected for audit purposes will be sent a letter of notification
- They will be asked to submit documents to verify the CE hours they have indicated on their designation renewal form
- They will have 60 days to comply with the audit request
Failure to comply with the request may result in the designation holder being declared “not in good standing.” This means they will no longer be able to use the PFP® trademarks.Misstated or fraudulent reporting of CE credits will be reported to the Designation Ethics Committee as a violation of the PFP® Code of Ethics and will be considered according to the Ethical Misconduct Process.