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Why work with a CFP® Practitioner?

By VerityCU September 1, 2020 Cfs at verity credit union

Addressing the need for solid, objective financial advice

The Need for Financial Planning

Partnering with a financial planner to guide you through the complexities of your financial strategy is an important decision that should not be taken lightly. Financial Planners can provide you and your family with guidance over your lifetime, or work with you to address specific concerns as needed. A planner can play a central role in helping you meet your life goals and achieve financial freedom.

Why the CFP® mark is important

All financial planners are not created equal. The CFP® mark is a great way to separate professionals that are certified and ones that are not.

The CFP® mark is the recognized standard of excellence for competent and ethical financial planning. Only those who have fulfilled the certification and renewal requirements of the CFP® board can display the CFP® certification marks. While there are many designations in the financial industry, only a select few carry the credibility and respect that the CFP® mark commands.

CFP® Certification requirements

Education: All CFP® professionals must have a bachelor’s degree and develop their financial planning knowledge by completing a comprehensive course of study at a college or university offering a financial planning curriculum approved by the CFP® board. In addition, every 2 years CFP professionals must complete 30 hours of continuing education in addition to insurance and firm element continuing education. CFS Advisor and CFP®Ken Butler, received his education from the University Of Washington Foster School Of Business and received his Financial Planning Certificate from Northwestern University.

Examination: CFP® practitioners must pass a comprehensive 170-question CFP® Certification examination that tests their ability to apply financial planning knowledge in an integrated format. The exam covers the financial planning process, tax planning, retirement planning, estate planning, investment management and insurance.

Experience: CFP® professionals must have three years minimum experience in the financial planning process prior to earning the right to use the CFP® certification marks. CFS* Advisor, Ken Butler, is a CFP® professional and has over 22 years of experience working in the Financial Planning and Investment Services business.

Ethics: As a final step to certification, CFP® practitioners agree to abide by a strict code of professional conduct, known as the CFP® Board’s Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility, that sets forth their ethical responsibilities to the public clients and employers. The CFP® Board also performs a background check during their process and each individual must disclose any investigations or legal proceedings related to their professional or business conduct.

What to expect when working with a CFP® Practitioner

When you work with a CFP® practitioner, you are the focus of the financial planning relationship and your needs drive the financial planner's recommendations. CFP® practitioners are held to a fiduciary standard, meaning that your interests are paramount.

CFP® practitioners take clients through a financial planning process that covers budget cash flow, retirement, investments, education planning, insurance, taxes and estate planning. The process is service and relationship driven, not product driven.

Check to see if your planner is a CFP® certificant

To verify that your planner is authorized by the CFP® board to use the CFP® certification marks, call toll free 1 (800) 487-1497, or visit CFP® Boards Web site at


*Non-deposit investment products and services are offered through CUSO Financial Services, LP (“CUSO Financial”) (“CFS”), a registered broker-dealer (Member FINRA/SIPC) and SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Products offered through CFS: are not NCUA/NCUSIF or otherwise federally insured, are not guarantees or obligations of the credit union, and may involve investment risk including possible loss of principal. Investment Representatives are registered through CUSO Financial. Verity Credit Union has contracted with CUSO Financial to make non-deposit investment products and services available to credit union members. Atria Wealth Solutions, Inc. (“Atria”) is not a broker-dealer or Registered Investment Advisor and does not provide advice. CUSO Financial is a subsidiary of Atria.