Table of Contents
For the Bylaws of the
INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION of QUALIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERS (IAQFP)
Article I Name, Location and Operation 1
Article II Objectives 1
Article III Prohibited Transactions 2
Article IV Registration Affiliation (Member/Listee) 2
Article V Membership Dues 3
Article VI Meetings 3
Article VII Board of Directors 4
Article VIII Officers 5
Article IX Election of Directors and Officers 7
Article X Ethics 8
Article XI Special Authority and Duties 9
Article XII Amendments and Publication 9
Article XIII Adoption 10
- Bylaws -
INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION of QUALIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERS
Article I – Name, Location and Operation
Section 1. Name:
The name of the Association is the INTERNATIONAL ASSOCIATION of QUALIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERS (abbreviated as either IAQFP or IAQFP.org).
Section 2. Location:
The office of the Association shall be located in such localities as may be determined by the Board of Directors, with the primary location being the Internet at www.IAQFP.org, and with the mailing address of: IAQFP.org,
Section 3. Operation:
The Association is and shall continue to operate on a not-for-profit basis under IRC Section 501(c)(6), as an unincorporated business league association.
Article II - Objectives
Section 1. General Description of IAQFP:
IAQFP is a professional business league Association of qualified & duly accredited professionals specifically educated and trained in the field and profession of Financial Planning. The Association provides the public with definitions, information and educational materials relating to Financial Planning that includes a free, geographically based Verification Registry (QFP Verification Registry of Qualified Financial Planners at www.IAQFP.org/qfp_registry.html), for use by the public to be able to both verify and locate Qualified Financial Planners (QFP). Listed QFP are those who our research has shown to be duly and equally qualified by education, exam, experience, and ethics, as evidenced by their having earned one or more of the following Financial Planning credentials: QFP, CFP®, ChFC, PFS, MS, or MSFS (the later two with a concentrated study in Financial Planning), or other designations that the Board of Directors may, from time to time, approve by a majority vote of the Association, or its’ Board, and that IAQFP so authorizes to use its QFP (Qualified Financial Planner) designation.
Section 2. Statement of Purpose & Mission:
In every lawful manner, the purpose(s) of this Association shall be to:
Section 3. Granting A Professional Designation:
In furtherance of its primary objective, the Association shall grant the “QFP” or “Qualified Financial Planner” professional designation to those it deems qualified under its established standards and criteria, and to all Members, Listees and all said parties who also at all time adhere to the IAQFP – “Code of Ethics & Professional Conduct”, “QFP Designation Usage Requirements & Advertising Guidelines”, the “Membership Agreement” (Members only) and who consent to be governed by the IAQFP Ethics Committee & Board’s “Disciplinary Procedure & Complaint Process” (each of these as amended from time to time).
Section 4. Public Opinion Statements:
Subject to prior approval of the Chairperson or the Board of Directors, the Association may take a position and express a public opinion to the media, legislative or regulatory bodies on issues directly and generally affecting the Financial Planning field, and with issues relating directly to its Membership.
Article III – Prohibited Transactions
Section 1. Prohibited Activities:
The Association, the Officers acting in their official capacity, and the Board of Directors, shall not:
(a) Endorse, recommend, approve or accredit the training program or curriculum of any commercial for-profit financial organization, except one that specifically provides the necessary education and exam(s) needed to acquire the QFP-Qualified Financial Planner professional designation.
(b) Endorse, recommend, approve or accredit the programs, services, processes, or products of any for-profit commercial financial organization that does not meet equivalent standards upon which we recognize Members or Listees.
(c) Develop or promulgate practice standards for Financial Planners or firms.
Section 2. Educational Institutions:
The acceptance of an educational institution or organization’s curriculum in satisfaction of the requirements necessary for achieving the QFP designation shall not constitute an endorsement or recommendation by the Association of said curriculum or organization.
Article IV - Registration Affiliations > Member or Listee
Section 1. Registration Affiliation Categories:
(a) Member. There shall one level of Member; namely, “Member”. Members have Voting Rights. Additionally, there are two special categories of “Member", with all the same rights and resources of Members; namely, those awarded Lifetime Membership, and/or Honorary Membership. Retired Members & Lifetime Members are exempt from paying Membership Dues, as are actively serving Members of the IAQFP.org Board of Directors.
Honorary Members are not required to pay Dues for the first twelve (12) months of their Membership.
(b) Listee. There shall one level of Listee; namely, “Listee”. Listees have no Voting Rights. Listees are not required to pay any kind of a dues or fee for the first twelve (12) months of their affiliation; however, Listees are subject, from the second year onward, to a Registry Continuation Listing Fee, sometimes also referred to as a Registry Renewal Fee.
A Member, Listee or one granted use of the QFP Designation must have earned one of the qualifying designations QFP, CFP®, PFS, ChFC, MSFS, or MS (the later two with a Financial Planning concentrated study), or their equivalent as determined by a majority Vote of the Board, or other designations that the Board of Directors may, from time to time, approve by a majority vote of either the Board or Association, and is one who at all times adheres to the IAQFP.org Standards to include but not be limited to ongoing compliance with: the IAQFP Code of Ethics & Professional Conduct; the IAQFP Membership Agreement (Members only); the QFP Designation Usage & Advertising Guidelines; the IAQFP Ethics Committee Disciplinary Procedures & Compliant Processes; the Statement of Purpose, Mission and general overall goals of the Association.
One who is “Suspended for Cause” is any Member, Listee or authorized user of the QFP Designation who has been found to have violated the IAQFP Code of Ethics & Professional Conduct or some other rule, regulation or condition of Membership, or of the Association, and who has been found by a majority vote of the IAQFP Ethics Committee needy of discipline. Suspension results in either permanent or temporary removal from the QFP Verification Registry. Such action must also be affirmed by the then acting Chairperson/President before being implemented.
Any QFP Registry listed person may be deactivated in the public QFP Verification Registry for failure to timely complete their Annual DUE DATE Process that consists of two steps; namely, Step-1, Re-Verification of their ongoing compliance with IAQFP.org Standards as noted herein above and elsewhere in the website of IAQFP.org, and Step-2, Affiliation selection, as either a Member or Listee. Failure to timely pay any due Fees or Membership Dues will result in deactivation until such time that said Fee(s) or Dues, or charge(s), are paid in full to IAQFP.org.
(c) Voting. Members, including Honorary & Lifetime Members, are entitled to one vote in the affairs of the Association. Proxy voting is permitted.
(d) Listees. IAQFP provides a free name and designations only Registry listing to non-Members, or Listees, for their initial 12 months QFP Registry Registration, and thereafter for a Fee generally referred to as either a Registry Continuation Fee or Registry Renewal Fee. The requirements to be listed and to remain listed are at least that one first formally Register on the IAQFP.org website, and that they continually adhere to the IAQFP.or Standards as noted hereinabove, along with fully complying with the Annual DUE DATE Process also noted herein.
All those once registered in the QFP Verification Registry forfeit all rights over said listing and are barred from removal by anyone other then a majority vote of the IAQFP Board or their duly appointed authority (deactivation is allowed for failure to timely and fully comply with the above noted IAQFP.org Standards, Annual DUE DATE Process, as well as for any disciplinary actions taken by the Ethics or Board of Directors of IAQFP.org.
Section 2. Qualifications:
Membership in this Association shall be limited to those who meet the qualifications set forth by the Board of Directors, and who have earned one or more of the following designation(s) QFP, CFP®, PFS, ChFC, MSFS, or MS (the later two with a Financial Planning concentrated study), or other designations that the Board of Directors may, from time to time, approve by a majority vote of the Association or the Board. Further, since earning (whether maintained or not) said designation(s) said persons must also have continuously maintained at least 15 hours annually of Financial Planning continuing education IAQFP shall at all times maintain the unrestricted right to refuse Membership, Listee status or Registration to anyone.
IAQFP has a self-policing policy that requires all those using the QFP Designation, or authorized to use it, to report any violations of our rules or policies, as well as to timely report any violations or potential violations as listed below under Section 3. Termination of Membership, Listee status or Registration.
Section 3. Termination of Membership, Listee status or Registration:
Reasons for termination (not all inclusive):
(a) By resignation.
(b) By involuntary forfeiture of a professional designation.
(c) For non-payment or untimely payment of annual IAQFP Membership Dues.
(d) For having a professional license revoked or suspended for cause.
(e) For violating IAQFP:“Code of Ethics & Professional Conduct”, “QFP Designation Usage Requirements & Advertising Guidelines”, the “Membership Agreement” (Members only) or to one who fails or otherwise interferes with the IAQFP Ethics Committee & Board’s “Disciplinary Procedure & Complaint Process” (each of these as amended from time to time).
(f) For failure to attest to and complete the required professional continuing education of an approved designation, credential, license, or that of IAQFP.
(g) For a legal conviction, felony, or other justifiable cause as determined by the IAQFP Ethics Committee and so ratified by our Chairperson / President.
Section 4. QFP Designation
We hold that once a QFP always a QFP, even if terminated from Membership for failure to pay annual dues. We believe this is important in realizing the ONE PROFESSION-ONE DESIGNATION ideal.
Section 4a. Termination
Members who are terminated, or who are otherwise no longer Members, are prohibited from implying, using, displaying, or otherwise advertising that they are an IAQFP Member.
Members terminated for failure to pay dues are automatically converted from Members to Listees within the records of the association, and are given a limited Name & Designations free listing within the QFP Verification Registry, so long as they have not been, or are not, also “Suspended for Cause”.
Section 5. Removal, or “Suspended for Cause”:
For any cause other than non-payment of Membership Dues, a Member or Listee or QFP person may only be expelled by majority vote of the Board of Directors after first giving the party in question an opportunity to address the Ethics Committee or Board with his/her petition. The Ethics Committee or Board will then privately deliberate and vote on the outcome, after which the effected Member will be notified either by e-mail or regular mail.
Those who are “Suspended for Cause”, as so determined by the IAQFP Ethics Committee, and also affirmed by the then acting Chairperson / President, will be removed from the public QFP Verification Registry in order to best protect the public. Such suspension and removal will either be permanent, or for a specified period of time, as so determined by the Ethics Committee and affirmed by the Chairperson / President. If it is decided the disciplined party no longer meets the conditions of continued Membership, or as a Listee or authorized user of the QFP Designation, then his/her name will be removed from the public QFP Verification Registry in order to best protect the public. Depending on the severity of the cause, the Ethics Committee or Board may also vote to publicly censure the offending Member or Listee, but to do so they must have a majority vote of the entire Board in favor of censure that only becomes effective upon affirmation of the then presiding Chairperson / President.
Section 6. Unpaid Accounts:
Any Member who resigns shall not be relieved of the obligation to pay any unpaid Dues or other charges that have accrued or been incurred by or on behalf of that Member for which the Association would otherwise be liable.
Article V – Membership Dues & Other Fees
Section 1. Establishment of Membership Dues & Other Fees:
Membership Dues or any kind of Fees connected with the operation of IAQFP.org that are attributed to Members or Listees (e.g. after an intial year of free Registry listing, all subsequent years require a Registry Continuation Listing Fee, or Registry Renewal Fee -- this fee is included or part of the renewal Membership Dues but is a separate Fee for Listees; Re-Activation Late Fees; QFP Certificate Fees; Document Reproduction Fees; etc.), shall be established from time to time by, and may be changed by, the Board of Directors by a majority vote. Said Dues and/or Fees are due and payable as specified and are non-prorated and non-refundable.
Section 2. Delinquency:
Any Member or Listee of the Association, who shall be delinquent in payment of Membership Dues or Fees for a period of seven (7) days, shall be notified of such delinquency. If payment is not received by the seventh (7th) day, the delinquent party shall be deactivated in the QFP Verification Registry on the 8th day thereafter and shall thereupon forfeit all rights and privileges of affiliation. Members who get into this situation will be automatically converted to a non-Member Listee and will remain suspended until they pay the Listee Registry Continuation or Renewal Fee as then in effect at that time.
Section 3. Refunds:
No Membership Dues, Renewal Dues, Listee Continuation or Renewal Fees shall be refunded or prorated at any time or for any reason.
Article VI – Meetings
Section 1. Annual Meetings:
The Association shall hold an annual meeting at such place and time as designated by the Board of Directors. The Board may call meetings of the Membership, including the issuing of ballots and vote calls as they deem necessary, and any such meetings can qualify as the Annual Meeting. Meetings held via the Internet also constitute legal meetings of the Association, especially since this is the main address and forum of this Association.
Section 2. Board of Directors Meetings:
The Board of Directors shall hold at least two meetings annually via the Internet by Internet Private Live Chat Page, telephone conference, e-mail, or by other lawful means, with the place, date and time of each meeting to be determined at the meeting or at a previous meeting, or by written prior announcement of the Chairperson. Any series of deliberations shall qualify and meet this requirement.
Section 3. Special Board of Directors Meetings:
At the request of the President / Chairperson, or a majority of the Directors, a special meeting may be called to be held in person, by e-mail, by telephone conference or by other lawful means. The business transacted at any special meeting shall be stated in notice thereof, and no other business may be considered at that time until and unless the specified business is first fully addressed and concluded.
Section 4. Transaction of Business by the Board of Directors Without Meetings:
The Board of Directors may, without meeting, transact business by e-mail, mail, or by facsimile by voting upon proposals provided to them by the President / Chairperson. Within ten (10) days, or another time frame then set by the President / Chairperson for any given deliberation or Vote Call, the members of the Board of Directors shall send in writing to the President / Chairperson at the offices of the Association their vote for or against a given proposal. A proposal shall be deemed to have been adopted or not adopted based upon a majority of those having voted. Majority is to be determined based upon those who respond within the allotted time frame.
Section 5. Notice of Meetings:
Written notices of any meeting shall be e-mailed to the last known e-mail address of each voting Member not less than five (5) days before the date of the meeting, or sooner as so determined by the Chairperson.
Section 6. Voting:
At all meetings Premier, Basic, Lifetime or Honorary Members shall have one vote, and may take part and vote in person, via e-mail or via the online Voting Booth of the IAQFP.org website. Unless otherwise specifically provided by these Bylaws, a majority of those Members present and/or voting, within the allotted time frame, shall govern. The Board shall have voting conducted by a distributed e-mail ballot, or other Internet based media, and shall determine and publicize the required receipt date. The outcome of any vote shall be announced to the Membership within ten (10) business days of tallying, or will appear live, after Login, within the online Voting Booth for Members or Board Members as the case may be.
Section 7. Quorum of Members:
At all Board of Directors meetings, whether regular or special, a quorum shall consist of a majority of the Board. There is no quorum requirement for any Membership meeting of the Associations Members.
Section 8. Rules of Order:
Roberts Rules of Order shall guide all meetings and proceedings of the Association for parliamentary procedure, except as may be otherwise noted in these Bylaws.
Article VII - Board of Directors
Section 1. Authority and Responsibility:
The governing body of this Association shall be the Board of Directors. The Board of Directors shall have supervision, control and direction over the affairs of the Association.
Section 2. Composition of the Board:
The Board of Directors shall be comprised of a minimum of three (3) Members who may also serve as Officers of the Association.
Section 3. Member Nominated Directors:
All Members of the Board shall be selected from the Membership of the Association by nomination, including self-nomination.
Section 4. Term Limits:
Other than the initial term, which may be longer to stagger re-elections, a term of service for Board Members is defined as a period of one (1) year with the exception of the Chairperson who serves for three (3) years. Board Members, other then the Chairperson / President, may not serve on the Board for for more than three consecutive 1-year terms.
Section 5. Election of the Board Chairperson:
The term for the Chairperson is three (3) years; subsequent Chairpersons shall be nominated to serve either by the then Chairperson, or by the Board from among its present or prior Directors, or if none agree to serve then from within the greater Membership, either by self-nomination or by selection of the Chairperson. The Chairperson nominee must be approved by a majority vote of the then presiding Board of Directors, and thereafter said nominee must be confirmed through an election by a majority vote of the general Membership.
Section 6. Vacancies on the Board of Directors:
To fill any vacant seats on the Board the Chairperson will pick from the available alternates, and if not sufficient or none exist, shall solicit recommendations or nominations from the Board of Directors and/or Membership. All of the remaining Members of the Board, including the Chairperson, shall vote, with a majority vote required for appointment.
Section 7. Removal of a Director from Board:
If a Member of the Board of Directors fails to participate in the business of the Association as determined by a majority vote of the Board, then that Member may be asked to vacate their position on the Board. A Member of the Board may only be removed from the Board by a majority vote of the remaining Board Members in attendance at such Board meeting, which may be held by Live Internet Chat, e-mail, a conference call or in writing as otherwise provided. The Chairperson, or next level Officer if the Chairperson is up for removal, must call for such a Vote and action.
Section 8. Compensation:
No Members of the Board of Directors shall receive any compensation for their services.
Section 8. Minimum Board / Committee Service Time Requirement:
The minimum time requirement for service, and/or recognition for service on the IAQFP Board of Directors or an IAQFP Committee is twelve (12) consecutive months. One may not take public credit for Board or Committee service for periods of less than 12 consecutive months (i.e. it is both an ethical and legal violation for a former Board Member or Committee person to publicly state, in any form, whether written or oral, that they served on the IAQFP Board, or an IAQFP Committee, who did not in fact serve for a minimum time frame of at least twelve (12) consecutive months).
Article VIII – Officers
Section 1. Composition:
The Officers of this Association shall be the President and the Secretary/Treasurer. Other positions, if any, of Vice President or Committee Chair may be created and terminated at the discretion of the Board of Directors or Chairperson/President.
Section 1A. Appointment of Officers:
Officers shall be nominated and appointed by majority vote of the Board of Directors with the exception of the President, who is also the Chairperson.
Section 2. Term Limits:
All Officers shall serve a term of three (3) years, more or less coinciding with their term of service on the Board. No one may serve more than two consecutive terms in the same office. The term of the President terminates upon the election & appointment of another President, whereby the terminating President becomes, by choice, another non-officer Board Member, or may be appointed to another Officer position, other than that of President, which is available, or may resign the position of Officer, or Director.
Section 3. Vacancy and Removal:
To fill an Officer vacancy, the President / Chairperson nominates a successor Officer from among the then existing Board of Directors, or elsewhere from the general Membership or outside sources, and then a majority vote of the entire Board of Directors appoints that successor Officer. The procedure to remove an Officer, other than the President, is at the sole discretion of a majority vote of the Board.
Section 4. Duties of the President / Chairperson:
The President / Chairperson shall serve as the head of the Association. The President / Chairperson shall preside over all meetings of the Officers and/or the Board of Directors, or appoint a substitute in his/her absence. The President / Chairperson shall see to it that all policies, orders and resolutions of the Board of Directors are executed, enforced and communicated to all Members. The President / Chairperson shall serve as a Member of the Board ex-officio, with the right to vote on all committees and make all required appointments of standing and special committees, and to remove, assign or reassign Committees and/or their Chairs. Separate approval of the Board of Directors is not required, although if opposed by a majority of the Board said appointments can be overturned.
The President / Chairperson is charged with the additional responsibility of all Association communications, although he/she may delegate these to the Secretary/Treasurer or other Board Member(s), in part or in whole, as he/she deems necessary.
The President / Chairperson shall fulfill the duties of any other vacant office or seats until a new appointment is made. The President / Chairperson shall also oversee any special project until a supervisor for that project is appointed, and shall perform any other duties that are necessary to promote the welfare of the Association.
Section 5. Duties of the Secretary/Treasurer:
The Secretary shall see to the proper and accurate recording of proceedings at all meetings of the Association and the Board of Directors, including prompt distribution. The Secretary shall be responsible for informing Members of the date, time and place of meetings, and keep the seal of the Association if any. The Secretary may delegate these responsibilities to the Association’s President or other qualified employee. In the absence of the President / Chairperson the Secretary shall preside over meetings of the Board of Directors.
Section 6. Duties of the Treasurer:
The Treasurer shall see to it that all of the Association’s funds be handled properly. The Treasurer shall collect all Member Dues, insure proper accounting procedures are utilized, be responsible for the keeping of the funds in such banks, trust companies and or investments as are approved by the Board of Directors or directed by the President / Chairperson. The Treasurer shall report on the financial condition of the Association at all meetings of the Board of Directors. In the absence of the President / Chairperson, and/or the Secretary, the Treasurer shall preside over meetings of the Board of Directors.
Section 7. Compensation:
There shall be no compensation for any Officers for their services, unless the Board shall have executed a written employment agreement with that or those Officers on behalf of the Association.
Article IX – Election of Directors and Appointment of Officers
Section 1. Qualifications:
Only active, in good standing Association Premier Members may serve on the Board of Directors, although Association Officers, except the President, need not be a Member. The Chairperson of the Board of Directors shall also be President at the same time; however, no one shall be able to hold more than one seat on the Board, or more than one Officer position, at any one time with the exception of the President / Chairperson, and then only as circumstances warrant.
Section 2. Elections:
Directors, other than the Chairperson / President, are self-nominated and appointed by the Chairperson and/or Board, with only the Chairperson / President, after nomination and a majority vote of the Board needing to also be elected by a majority vote of the general Membership. The Chairperson is the only Director elected to serve for up to a three (3) year term, and with up to no more then two such consecutive terms at one time, while also serving as the President. The Chairperson must also be elected by majority vote of the entire Membership to be confirmed. All other Directors serve one-year terms, but may remain on the Board for up to 3-years consecutively.
Directors are self-nominated or can be nominated by anyone within the Membership of the Association. In cases where more than nine (9) are nominated, a vote for majority decision of the Membership is called to determine which candidates have the most support. In cases where votes are necessary, due to an abundance of nominees, each nominee shall provide a written brief resume containing business and professional experience, and a statement on how he or she intends to promote the goals of and benefit the Association. The Association shall post this information onto the Members Only section of the web site and shall also provide this information as part of any vote ballot.
Appointment of Directors shall take place as called for within the last quarter of the preceding year.
Section 3. Appointment of Officers – President, Secretary/Treasurer:
Annually, the Board of Directors, which then will include newly nominated Board Members, shall convene to nominate & appoint new Officers, other than President. All Board Members wishing to also serve as an Officer must make their candidacy known at this time. Each Director shall have one vote. The candidates with the most votes for any given Office shall stand for election in that Office and shall then be appointed by majority vote of the Board. There is no prohibition for the then acting Secretary/Treasurer from remaining unless the new Board requests a change.
Section 4. Candidates for Board of Director Positions:
Members are encouraged to self-nominate themselves, or any other interested Member, so as long as that nominee meets all requirements for that position and does not object. Not less than two-weeks prior to the meeting to nominate or reaffirm existing Directors, all nominees must submit to the Board Chairperson / President, an e-mail letter of intent to run. The candidate also must submit a brief resume containing business and professional experience, along with a brief statement on how he or she intends to promote the goals of the Association, or otherwise benefit the Association. The President will then immediately make these nominees known to the rest of the Board for approval.
Section 5. Voting Procedures for Election of Chairperson / President:
All Premier, Lifetime, and Honorary Members in good standing attending the Association’s annual meeting, or other meeting called for the purposes of electing the Chairperson / President, shall have the right to vote. All voting shall be performed by ballot, including by way of e-mail or other Internet media such as the Members Voting Booth. After the voting is complete, the current President / Chairperson may select three people who are not nominees for any seats to count the ballots, or count them himself, subject to independent Board verification if and as called for by any Member of the Board. If there are more then one candidate the person receiving the most votes shall be deemed elected and thereby appointed. The result is given to the President / Chairperson who then announces the winner. In the event of a tie, the President / Chairperson will cast the deciding vote or may decide to select the winner by chance.
Section 6. Election of Officers:
The Officers shall be nominated & appointed by the Board of Directors for yearly terms following the then current Annual nomination and appointment of new Directors (if any), with the exception of the President whose appointment shall be three (3) years in conjunction with his/her Director position as Chairperson.
Officers are nominated & appointed by the Board of Directors of the Association from existing Directors, or in situations where no other local Los Angeles County Director or Member exists, by the Chairperson / President. The Officers shall be appointed by a majority vote of the Board of Directors, with the Presidents appointment being automatic with his/her election by a majority vote of the general Membership as Chairperson / President.
Initial IAQFP Chairperson & IAQFP Officers
Section 7. Taking Office:
All elected personnel, as well as any appointed Committee Chairs, will assume the responsibility associated with their office immediately after the appointment or election, as the case may be, and will become active in their new capacity without delay or, if specified, by a given date.
Article X – Ethics
Section 1. Ethics Committee:
The Ethics Committee shall be comprised of at least three (3) Members from the Association appointed by the Chairperson. Typically, at least two (2) of these will be Board Members, but may be general Members; however, at least the Ethics Chair must be an active Board Member. If there is no Ethics Chair the Chairperson / President will assume such responsibilities and powers.
Section 2. Function of the Ethics Committee:
The Ethics Committee shall review complaints received from the public, from Association Members, Listees or government agencies regarding the conduct of any Member, Listee or QFP person. It is the responsibility of this Committee to determine the substance of any complaint and whether or not discipline in the form of a Suspension for Cause is or is not justified. Further, said Committee, by a majority vote, is to determine whether or not a suspension is to be permanent or for a set time frame. Once this determination has been made, by a majority vote of the Ethics Committee, it must then be submitted to the then acting Chairperson / President for approval and implementation. Suspensions are primarily implemented in an effort to protect the public and result in the permanent or temporary removal of an offending QFP, Member, or Listee, from the public QFP Verification Registry of Qualified Financial Planners.
Section 3. Complaint Process:
If the complaint appears to have merit from the evidence presented, the Ethics Committee or Chairperson shall notify in writing the violating party of the alleged charges. The violating party shall have thirty (30) days to respond to the charges in writing via e-mail or mail to the Chairperson and the Ethics Chair. If the Ethics Committee still finds merit in the complaint after reviewing the violating parties response, or if there is no response, the Committee shall vote and then submit their findings to Chairperson / President for final disposition.
Section 4. Determination of Removal by the Board:
An affirmative vote of a majority of the Ethics Committee, and thereafter an affirmation by the Chairperson / President, is required to remove a violating party from IAQFP. If the complaint is lodged against a Board Member or Officer, that Member or Officer may not participate in the vote for removal and shall not be present during Board or Ethics Committee consideration of Suspension for Cause and/or removal.
Section 5. IAQFP Code of Ethics & Professional Conduct:
The following IAQFP Code of Ethics & Professional Conduct is the professional responsibility of each IAQFP Member, Listee or authorized QFP person, who have all agreed to at all times be bound by and adhere to this, or its’ then current version, as well as the terms and conditions contained within the then current IAQFP Membership Agreement (Members only), and/or other rules and requirements of IAQFP:
Article XI – Special Authority and Duties
Section 1. Designation Qualifications:
The Board, or any Committee authorized by the Board, may develop and revise qualifications and standards for the QFP designation, or any other qualification of Association Membership or of a Listee or QFP person. Changes that are agreed upon by a majority vote of the Directors may be immediately implemented, or they may then be submitted to the general Membership for their consideration, comment, and majority vote FOR or AGAINST. Adoption of such matters shall be determined by majority vote of all those submitting a vote within the allotted time frame, be that Directors only or the general Membership.
Section 2. Strategic Alliances:
The Board, Officers, and any Committee authorized by the Board, may negotiate strategic alliances or partnerships with other Associations, institutions or organizations. Such relationships are to be documented in writing. Such arrangements can be approved by either a majority vote of the Board, or by approval of the President / Chairperson, and are then legally binding upon the Association, and shall not conflict with Article III.
Section 3. Direct Ownership or Participation:
The Board of Directors is authorized to acquire full or partial ownership in any enterprise that is related to the field of Financial Planning services, or the provision of services to the Association Members provided that it does not conflict with Article III.
Article XII – Amendments and Publication
Section 1. Proposed Amendment:
Any ten active Members, two Directors, or the IAQFP Chairperson / President may propose an amendment to these Bylaws or to our Articles of Association. The proposed Amendment is to be given in writing to the Secretary in advance of a Board of Directors meeting, or may be provided directly by the President / Chairperson at anytime to the Board. The Secretary, or President / Chairperson shall thereafter immediately send a copy of the proposed Amendment to the Chairperson / President & each Director for their approval and signature, with passage requiring a majority response by the Board within the allotted time frame. If the Board fails to act in a timely manner to update or amend the Bylaws, or Articles of Association as necessary, the Chairperson / President, along with one other Officer or Director, may implement the changes by affixing their signatures onto the documents.
Section 2. Voting on the Proposed Amendment:
The Board of Directors shall deliberate the proposed Amendment and may make any changes that are deemed necessary. The Board of Directors may vote on the adoption of any final proposed Amendment. A majority affirmative vote of those voting is required for the proposed Amendment(s) to be adopted.
Section 3. Time for Voting:
If a proposed Amendment is distributed for written ballot, either to only Board Members or the Membership, only ballots received within the appointed time as stated within the ballot shall be counted.
Section 4. Publication:
A complete copy of these Bylaws shall be made available to person upon written request to the Chairperson / President, or Secretary, and a charge may be required to cover the costs of copying, mailing, etc. That charge is currently set at $25 per copy.
Article XIII – Adoption
Bylaws initially adopted: January 1, 2003
Bylaws amended & effective: January 1, 2004
Bylaws recently amended & effective: January 25, 2005
Bylaws last amended & effective: May 15, 2009