The financial advisory community is rallying in support of the millions of Americans who are financially at-risk due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Many of the industry’s leading organizations, including the The Financial Planning Association, XY Planning Network and The Foundation for Financial Planning, have recruited members to provide free financial guidance to Americans who don’t typically have access to financial planning services, have lost a job, lost income from reduced work or taken unpaid sick leave as a result of COVID-19.

“As many underserved individuals and families are experiencing economic hardship due to the coronavirus outbreak, I’m pleased FPA is able to ramp up pro bono financial planning efforts to serve those most in need through the dedication and passion of our outstanding members. In these unprecedented times, FPA aims to help vulnerable populations gain hope and stability and come out stronger than before,” FPA Executive Director and CEO Lauren M. Schadle said in a news release.

To be eligible to provide pro bono financial planning services through FPA programs, advisors must be an FPA member in good standing, complete FPA's pro bono financial planning training course, sign a pro bono letter of engagement that states he or she will take responsibility for services provided in the engagement and be a CFP professional. FPA members interested in volunteering can contact FPA Pro Bono Director Kurt Kaczor.

XY Planning Network is encouraging anyone who has experienced a loss of income due to the coronavirus outbreak to visit XYPN’s Find an Advisor search portal on XYPlanningNetwork.com and search under the keyword phrase “coronavirus relief” to find available CFP professionals. 

XY Planning Networs CEO and co-founder Alan Moore said that while his network of financial planners helps people on a daily basis, this program will allow them to help people normally not reached by financial planning. "It further cements that the future of the industry is for us to become a helping profession that isn’t limited to the wealthy but ... for all consumers,” he said.

Moore noted that within an hour of organizing the pro bono effort, 50 XYPN advisors signed on to serve, and the number continues to grow, he said.

Individuals in need of free financial advisor assistance should visit XYPlanningNetwork.com’s Find an Advisor portal and search for “coronavirus relief”.

The Foundation for Financial Planning (FFP) said in a release it will be taking several steps in the near term to help pro bono volunteers, consumers and nonprofit partners get through the crisis. Its proposed offerings include developing a dedicated page to house relevant resources for advisors and their pro bono clients. It also will offer emergency grants and technical assistance to help ensure that its pro bono programs remain afloat, including by moving in-person engagements to virtual models and by helping cover overhead costs where possible.

The FFP is requesting that CFP professional interested in offering pro bono services to create a profile on CFPVolunteerMatch.org.

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