Read CFP Board's Notice Regarding Bankruptcy Standard and Procedures
CFP Board’s Code of Ethics and Standards of Conduct provides that a CFP® professional may not engage in conduct that reflects adversely on his or her integrity or fitness as a CFP® professional, upon the CFP® marks, or upon the profession. This includes conduct that results in a personal bankruptcy or business bankruptcy filing or adjudication where the CFP® professional was a control person of the business, unless the CFP® professional can rebut the presumption that the bankruptcy demonstrates an inability to manage responsibly the CFP® professional’s or the business’s financial affairs. Since June 30, 2020, when this standard went into effect for enforcement purposes, CFP Board has enforced this standard through the process set forth in the Procedural Rules, including by conducting investigations, filing and adjudicating Complaints, and issuing sanctions for violations of this standard. CFP Board publishes public sanctions in a press release and in the CFP® professional’s disciplinary history on Verify a CFP® Professional and Find a CFP® Professional. You may find more information regarding a CFP® professional’s bankruptcy filing at the U.S. Court’s Public Access to Court Electronic Records (“PACER”) website. Please note that you will be required to register and pay a nominal fee to view the information.
Bankruptcy Disclosure Under Prior Bankruptcy Disclosure Procedures
Prior to June 30, 2020, CFP Board had a different process (the “Prior Bankruptcy Disclosure Procedures”) for addressing cases involving a CFP® professional who filed bankruptcy within the previous five years, and who was not under investigation by CFP Board for any other conduct (“bankruptcy-only cases”). These procedures, which went into effect in July 2012, applied only to CFP® professionals who filed bankruptcy one time. In cases where a CFP® professional filed bankruptcy more than one time, regardless of the dates of the filings, CFP Board investigated the filings under its normal disciplinary procedures.
Under this procedure, which no longer is in effect, CFP Board did not investigate or adjudicate bankruptcy-only cases. Instead, CFP Board verified the bankruptcy filing by checking publicly available court records, then noted the bankruptcy filing on the CFP® professional’s public profile, which is available on the “Find a CFP® Professional” and “Verify an Individual’s CFP® Certification” search functions. CFP Board also issued news releases to identify CFP® professionals who had filed bankruptcy within the previous five years. This release of information, which enabled consumers to make an informed decision about engaging a CFP® professional to assist with financial decisions, did not constitute a sanction or discipline. The disclosure of the bankruptcy in a CFP® professional’s public profile was to continue for 10 years from the earlier of the date the CFP® professional disclosed the bankruptcy to CFP Board or the date CFP Board became aware of the bankruptcy.