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Corporate Responsibility


Compliance is an important part of our working relationship with our clients. Compliance is also part of our routine interaction with our various supplier companies and the regulators who license and supervise our industry.

Ethics represent the principles or spirit of professional behaviour. Standards give us a way to measure that behaviour so that everyone’s interests are protected.

Practice Standards provide a concrete framework on which to clearly define the knowledge, skills, abilities and attitudes that should be expected of financial planning professionals.

Code of Ethics

A Code of Ethics is the cornerstone of any recognized professional designation. Doctors, dentists, lawyers and accountants, for instance, must adhere to a Code of Ethics within their respective professions. Anyone who strays from the Code risks losing their licence. In the world of financial services, there are many designations. The CFP designation is the only one that demands strict adherence to a professional Code of Ethics specific to the practice of financial planning.

Since financial planning in Canada is not nationally regulated, it is the CFP standards of competency and ethical behaviour that define the profession of financial planning. Throughout Canada, the public can look to the CFP designation as a mark of quality and professional integrity.

CFP professionals can specialize in many different disciplines and may be compensated by a variety of means. Regardless of whether they are actively involved in financial planning or in other areas of financial services, all CFP professionals must subscribe to the same Code of Ethics based on seven Principles:

Principle 1: Integrity

A CFP professional shall always act with integrity.

CFP professionals may be placed by clients in positions of trust and confidence. The ultimate source of such public trust is the CFP professional's personal integrity. In deciding what is right and just, a CFP professional should rely on his or her integrity as the appropriate touchstone. Integrity demands honesty and candor that must not be subordinated to personal gain and advantage. Within the characteristic of integrity, allowance can be made for legitimate difference of opinion; but integrity cannot co-exist with deceit or subordination of one's principles. Integrity requires the CFP professional to observe not only the letter but also the spirit of this Code.

Principle 2: Objectivity

A CFP professional shall be objective in providing financial planning to clients.

Objectivity requires intellectual honesty and impartiality. It is an essential quality for any professional. Regardless of the particular service rendered or the capacity in which a CFP professional functions, a CFP professional should protect the integrity of his or her work, maintain objectivity, and avoid the subordination of his or her judgment, which would be in violation of this Code.

Principle 3: Competence

A CFP professional shall provide services to clients competently and maintain the necessary knowledge and skill to continue to do so in those areas in which the CFP professional is engaged.

One is competent only when one has attained and maintained an adequate level of knowledge and skill, and applies that knowledge effectively in providing services to clients. Competence also includes the wisdom to recognize the limitations of that knowledge and when consultation or client referral is appropriate. A CFP professional, by virtue of having earned the CFP designation, is deemed to be qualified to practice financial planning. However, in addition to assimilating the core competencies and knowledge required, and acquiring the necessary experience, a CFP professional shall make a commitment to continuous learning and professional development.

Principle 4: Fairness

A CFP professional shall perform financial planning in a manner that is fair and reasonable to clients, principals, partners, and employers and shall disclose conflicts of interest in providing such services.

Fairness requires impartiality, intellectual honesty, and disclosure of conflicts of interest. It involves a subordination of one's own feelings, prejudices, and desires so as to achieve a proper balance of conflicting interests. Fairness is treating others in the same fashion that one would want to be treated and is an essential trait of any professional.

Principle 5: Confidentiality

A CFP professional shall maintain confidentiality of all client information.

A client, by seeking the services of a CFP professional, expects to develop a relationship of personal trust and confidence. This type of relationship must be built upon the understanding that information supplied to the CFP professional will be confidential. In order to provide financial planning effectively and to protect the client's privacy, the CFP professional shall safeguard the confidentiality of such information.

Principle 6: Professionalism

A CFP professional's conduct in all matters shall reflect credit upon the profession.

A CFP professional shall behave in a manner that maintains the good reputation of the profession and its ability to serve the public interest. A CFP professional shall avoid activities that adversely affect the quality of his or her financial planning advice.

Principle 7: Diligence

Diligence is the provision of services in a prompt and thorough manner.

Diligence also includes proper planning for and supervision of the rendering of professional services.

At Barrons we abide by Practice Standards and a Code of Ethics as established by the Financial Planners Standards Council. In addition, Advocis, and the CLU Institute Code of Professional Conduct (CPC) sets out a list of principles that an Advocis Member is expected to abide by in his or her business activities and in his or her liaison between clients and suppliers of insurance, and/or other financial products and services.

An important function for Advocis, as a voluntary professional association, is the self-disciplinary role necessary to ensure that an Advocis Member conducts his or her actions in accordance with the CPC.

Disciplinary sanctions may be imposed against an Advocis Member for any action that is found to violate the letter and spirit of this Code.

Financial Planners Standards Council (FPSC), established in 1995, is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to benefiting Canadians and the financial planning profession by establishing and enforcing education, examination, experience and ethics requirements for individuals who choose to earn the CFP designation. There are currently more than 15,000 planners licensed to use the CFP marks in Canada and approximately 74,000 CFP professionals in 17 countries around the world. See for further information.

The Financial Advisors Association of Canada (Advocis), members adhere to the highest standards of professionalism, and abide by a strict Code of Professional Conduct. Allegations of unprofessional conduct are investigated utilizing a disciplinary process based upon peer review principles. See for further information.

The Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO),  The Financial Services Commission of Ontario (FSCO) was created on July 1, 1998, as an arm's-length agency of the Ministry of Finance. FSCO integrates the operations of the former Ontario Insurance Commission, Pension Commission of Ontario, and Deposit Institutions Division of the Ministry of Finance. FSCO comprises three key parts: the Commission; the Financial Services Tribunal (Tribunal); and the Superintendent and Staff. See  for further information.