What does it mean to have Chartered status?

2016 marks another significant year of financial change. There have been further amendments to allowances, dividends and tax thresholds. A staggering amount of pensioners do not understand the new pension rules and entitlements. More people risk being drawn into the inheritance tax net.

In these complicated and often confusing circumstances, planning is paramount – but who can be trusted to help you make key financial decisions?

Wade Financial have been providing sound advice and bespoke solutions for over thirteen years. It’s not just our personal service, tailored to lifestyles rather than products, that sets us apart from the competition. We are also officially Chartered financial planners, a status bestowed upon us by the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII).

What does that mean?

Chartered status is the recognised gold standard within the industry, with the firm or individual expected to demonstrate commitment to ‘raising standards of knowledge, capability and ethical practice’.

Put simply, it is the benchmark for the highest quality of service and standards.

To achieve this exalted status, planners must have at least five years’ experience in the industry, undertake further education every year and pass a series of exams covering various aspects of the financial services profession. For firms to qualify as Chartered, the board and the majority of customer-facing staff must be members of the CII, and the company must meet the Institute’s strict criteria, including its rigorous Code of Ethics.

Obtaining Chartered status is no mean feat. In fact, of the thousands of financial planning firms operating across the UK, only 700 have met the CII’s requirements.

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What does it mean to you?

The status has gained recognition outside of Chartered circles, widely accepted as a hallmark of excellence amongst SMEs and the general public alike. A Chartered financial planner can be expected to be in the best position to provide advice of the highest quality, based on the latest industry developments and your own unique circumstances.

“We’re very proud to be Chartered financial planners, as it reflects our dedication to providing the very best advice possible,” said Steve Conway. Wade Financial’s Managing Director earned individual Chartered status back in 2012, and the firm followed suit thereafter. “We work incredibly hard to ensure that we maintain and improve our professional standards wherever possible, and will continue to do so in order to best serve our clients.”

With the new pension freedom rules opening up new avenues for over-60s, with 31% more retirees contemplating financial advice. “The general public have often been wary of the industry, but recent changes have made financial advice a necessity for many people,” said financial planner Ian Little. “Most are looking for accredited, trustworthy advisers who will act in their best interests and help them get the most out of their money. Chartered status goes a long way in certifying our high standards and professionalism for both new and existing clients.”

To find out more about what Chartered status entails and what it means to you, visit the CII’s website here.