Financial certification is not the same as a registration or a license.
When choosing an advisor, educational achievements and professional experience are important considerations, in addition to licensing and registration. But did you know the financial certificates used by advisors does not necessarily mean they are registered or licensed with a regulator or other authority?
Marketing Versus Expertise
When choosing a financial advisor, look beyond the letters that follow an individual’s name or business title. If a financial advisor uses a specific certification or designation or otherwise represents him/herself as having special expertise, ask questions and find out what these credentials really mean. Always do your homework and verify the financial advisor has the skills, professional qualifications and registration that you are looking for.
There is a wide range of firms and individuals offering many different kinds of products and advice, and the level of skills, areas of expertise, and even the fees charged will vary. Above all, choose a financial advisor who understands your financial situation and investment objectives and is willing to work with you to meet those goals.
Not all Certifications are Created Equal
There are many financial certifications in use in the Canadian financial services industry, so never select a financial advisor based solely on his or her certifications.
Standards for achieving financial certifications range from rigorous and demanding to less stringent. Use IIROC’s Glossary of Financial Certifications to review certification requirements.
Glossary of Financial Certifications
IIROC’s Glossary of Financial Certifications provides information about certificates and designations used by advisors in the Canadian financial services industry. Use this tool to learn about and compare what the various certifications mean and how they are achieved.