How Do You Take the CFP Exam to Become a Certified Financial Planner?


Register for the Certified Financial Planner, or CFP, exam by phone or online by contacting CFP Board at least 60 days before the next scheduled test date. Students can register for the exam after completing all CFP certification coursework required or up 30 days before completing coursework to secure a spot for the next available exam.

  1. Select a CFP exam test date and location

    CFP exams are offered Tuesday through Saturday, three times per year in March, July and November. Exams include two three-hour testing sessions and one 40-minute break. Select a testing day and location that doesn't interfere with current work schedules or personal obligations. Plan to spend up to seven hours at the testing location.

  2. Prepare for the exam

    Prepare for the exam by reviewing past coursework, taking sample tests and participating in group study sessions. Students who fail the exam need to retake the exam to receive CFP certification. Students have five chances to pass the exam and may retake the exam up to three times within 24 months.

  3. Bring proof of identification on exam day

    Arrive at least 30 minutes prior to the exam start time. Leave all personal items in the locker provided at the testing location. Bring a valid driver's license or other legal form of identification to the exam location. Fingerprint scans are mandatory when entering or leaving the testing room.