Financial Paraplanner Qualified Professional (FPQP)

Written by True Tamplin, BSc, CEPF®

Reviewed by Editorial Team

Updated on March 12, 2023

A Financial Paraplanner Qualified Professional (FPQP) is an individual who has met the specific requirements set forth by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board) to be recognized as a professional financial planner.

To become an FPQP, one must pass a rigorous examination that covers all aspects of financial planning, from securities analysis to retirement planning.

In addition, FPQPs must adhere to a strict code of ethics and maintain their designation through ongoing continuing education requirements.

Functions of an FPQP

The following are the functions of a Financial Paraplanner:

  • Analyzes the client's assets, income, insurance coverage, debts, and cash flow to determine risk exposure
  • Provides ongoing advice on the implementation of the financial plan
  • Updates/revises the plan as necessary to reflect the client's changing needs and goal

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Why Become an FPQP?

The certificate is ideal for people who work in supporting roles in financial planning and those with no prior knowledge.

Personal finance education and counseling is a part of the course. It covers all important aspects of personal financial planning. This ensures that students have a solid grasp on financial planning concepts.

There are many benefits to becoming an FPQP. Some of these include:

  • Increased credibility and respect within the financial planning community
  • Opportunities for professional growth and development
  • The ability to use the CFP marks, which are recognized and respected throughout the financial planning community
  • The ability to provide clients with comprehensive, unbiased financial planning advice
  • The peace of mind that comes with knowing that you are meeting the highest standards in the profession

How to Become an FPQP

In order to become an FPQP, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Be a CFP with good standing
  • Have completed at least 2 years of full-time work experience in financial planning
  • Have passed the FPQP examination
  • Agree to abide by the CFP Board's Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility

FPQP vs Certified Financial Planners (CFPs)

There is a big distinction between FPQPs and Certified Financial Planners. A certified financial planner (CFP) is a type of financial advisor that has been certified by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc.

The CFP certification requires more study than the FPQP while the FPQP is more of an entry-level certification. Candidates for the CFP must demonstrate that they have 6,000 hours of professional experience in the sector.

To have the CFP designation, you must have a bachelor's degree from an approved institution or college. You must also complete a college-level course of study in personal financial planning, as well as a CFP Board-approved capstone course.

You may take the CFP exam once you've completed the coursework requirements.

The 150-question test is meant to assess the applicant's retention of information and how they apply it in financial situations. CFPs must renew their certification every two years, much as FPQPs.

CFPs must renew their certificates, which involves applying again and completing a 30-hour continuing education requirement, including a 28-hour financial planning coursework and a two-hour CFP Board-approved ethics education.

The FPQP exam is also available as a self-study program. This requires several hours of continuing education coursework, too. The Certified Planner Board, in contrast to the FPQPs, does a background check on all candidates.

Past criminal convictions, employment issues, and client complaints must all be disclosed by candidates.

The Bottom Line

FPQPs and CFPs are both highly respected in the financial planning community. However, there are some distinct differences between the two designations.

FPQPs may have less experience than CFPs, but they have passed an examination that covers all important aspects of personal finance. CFPs, on the other hand, must demonstrate a much higher level of education and past experience.

The key to determining which designation is best for you depends on your particular career goals. For those who are looking to take the next step in their financial planning careers, becoming an FPQP may be a good choice.

This designation takes significantly less time and money than earning a CFP certification, but it still demonstrates a high level of knowledge and experience in the field.

FPQPs are held to the same ethical standards as CFPs and are respected for their dedication to providing quality financial planning services.

Financial Paraplanner Qualified Professional (FPQP) FAQs

About the Author

True Tamplin, BSc, CEPF®

True Tamplin is a published author, public speaker, CEO of UpDigital, and founder of Finance Strategists.

True is a Certified Educator in Personal Finance (CEPF®), author of The Handy Financial Ratios Guide, a member of the Society for Advancing Business Editing and Writing, contributes to his financial education site, Finance Strategists, and has spoken to various financial communities such as the CFA Institute, as well as university students like his Alma mater, Biola University, where he received a bachelor of science in business and data analytics.

To learn more about True, visit his personal website, view his author profile on Amazon, or check out his speaker profile on the CFA Institute website.

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