The confusion reflected in your reporting is not at all different from what a less informed public encounters as it traverses the "alphabet soup" of financial services designations in search of financial planners. It was to end this confusion, and stop the disenfranchisement created by the CFP Board and FPA‚s refusal to recognize anyone other than CFP certificants as financial planners, that in 2003 ( introduced the QFP, the Qualified Financial Planner designation. That action began unification of the financial planning profession, and did so under one universal identifier that was created to include all qualifying designations of the financial planning profession, while at the same time lessening the confusion for a much deserving public. The QFP designation thereby unifies all duly credentialed and qualified financial planners, while remaining exclusive to the overall field and profession of financial planning. Further, the QFP designation helps to distinguish for the public and professionals alike the field of financial planning as a discipline unto itself, distinct from the broader and more generalized field of financial services.

One other area of confusion expressed in your reporting is found in your statement, "Others question whether the QFP is a real designation since it has no unique qualifications but simply requires one to earn another designation." To the contrary, the designation also requires that one adhere to what many feel is the profession‚s highest code of ethics and professional conduct, while also requiring of the QFP continuing education that spans the full spectrum of financial planning subject matter. Furthermore, those QFPs who are also IAQFP members have added standards that subject them to oversight by the IAQFP Ethics Committee & Board, and who are in turn provided an exclusive Web site listing in the QFP Registry of Qualified Financial Planners where the public, too, can both verify and easily locate them.

Thank you for your coverage of these important matters and for allowing us the opportunity to make these clarifications.

Paul M. League, QFP, CFP, Chairman,

International Association Of Qualified Financial Planners,

Please e-mail letters to Editor-In-Chief Evan Simonoff at [email protected] or fax them to (732) 450-8477. Letters also may be mailed to his attention at Financial Advisor Magazine, 600 Broad St., Second Floor, Shrewsbury, N.J. 07702.

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