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March 23, 2010


Featured BrokeAndBroker Blogger Rick Johnson is my kind of guy -- he doesn't pull his punches.   Rick's recent Blog entry The Financial Planners Act of 2010 is delivered with the power of a karate punch to the solar plexus.  Consider these pointed barbs:

Once again, Wall Street has managed to get their loopholes in yet another piece of legislation. The Financial Planners Act of 2010 defines what financial planning is and requires anyone who holds themselves out as financial planners to be registered as a "registered financial planner" and subject to a yet to be named financial planner oversight board. This is already a requirement of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940.

The definition of financial planning is defined in this FP Act and anyone who works for a broker/dealer, bank or insurance agency can offer financial planning services, as defined, without having to be a registered financial planner. There is even a loophole that they can have the Certified Financial Planner designation on their business card, but still not be considered as holding themselves out as a financial planner. Or, they could have the Chartered Financial Consultant designation or the Personal Financial Specialist designation and as long as they do not hold themselves out as financial planners, then they do not have to do things in the best interest of the client.

Forgive me but doesn't this seem a*% backwards? Take for example, someone like me who is a Certified Financial Planner and also an Investment Adviser Representative for a Registered Investment Adviser. I am required to do things in a client's best interest. I pay fees to keep my CFP designation. I pay fees to be an Investment Adviser Representative and fees to be a  Branch Office of a Registered Investment Adviser and yet more fees to be a Registered Investment Adviser firm. With this new act, I will now have to pay more fees to be a "registered financial planner." However, the loophole financial planners who do not have to register will not be subject to the ethics and disciplinary oversight of this new board. Yet, they can put CFP on their business card just like me. Of course, this will in no way shape or form confuse clients, will it? How is a client to know who is a registered financial planner and who is not? Will I be allowed to put registered financial planner on my business card and marketing materials? I doubt it. The confusion will persist for clients in trying to figure out if a CFP is also a registered financial planner. . .

To read Rick's Complete Diatribe, Visit


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  • How simple is it to steal a quarter of a million in insurance premiums?  How about you just submit a change of address form. CLICK HERE TO READ CASE
  • Why accuse a broker of "forgery," when you can engage in prosaic pyrotechnics along the lines of "Davis falsified the customer's signature on the application and submitted it to his member firm as authentic, causing the firm's books and records to be false and inaccurate." CLICK HERE TO READ CASE
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