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Maintaining Certification

Maintaining Your RIA Advanced Certification

RIA Certificants must actively pursue ongoing professional development through educational coursework, attendance at industry related events, association involvement, presentations, mentoring and more. Those holding an RIA advanced certification adhere to a strict Code of Professional Conduct and provide quality assurance to the general public and industry-at-large.

Once Certified

Having completed the rigorous study, examination and formal project, Candidates then receive their formal advanced certification and are known as “Certificants.” Upon receipt of their certification, they agree to:

  1. Comply with RIA’s Code of Ethical Conduct
  2. Comply with trademark infringement policies
  3. Maintain continuing education credits
  4. Submit payment of their certification renewal fee every three years.

3-year Certification Cycle

Upon formal notification from RIA, Certificants begin their 3-year certification cycle which runs on the calendar year.

Example: The 3-year certification cycle for a professional who becomes certified in December 2011 would run from January 1, 2012 – December 31, 2014.

Continuing Education Credits (CECs)

All RIA Certificants are required to maintain a total of 32 continuing education contact hours within their three-year certification cycle.

All CECs must be obtained within the three-year cycle to ensure the Certificant is obtaining current and updated knowledge and information. Please refer to RIA’s 2012 Continuing Education Credit Submission document for complete updated categories and guidelines.

Certification Renewal Fee

Certificants are required to pay their certification renewal fee every three years.
Certificants nearing the end of their 3-year cycle will be notified in June of their 3rd cycle year and given an updated status of their CECs and renewal fee.

Certification Compliance Status

Certificants who do not comply with the ongoing re-certification requirements, will be subject to the following action(s):


This policy extends a five-month grace period for Certificants who miss their initial recertification payment and CEC submission deadline.

  1. Certificants who do not remit their certification renewal fee and/or submit the appropriate CECs by the end of their current three year cycle will be moved to a “Lapsed” status as of the first of the New Year.
  2. A five-month grace period (January 1st – June 1st) is extended to Lapsed Certificants in order for them to comply and reinstate their “Active” status.
  3. RIA Certificants whose certification has lapsed must adhere to the following reinstatement requirements:
  • Payment of the current certification renewal fee plus a reinstatement processing late fee
  • Submission of continuing education course(s) to acquire the required CECs within the designated 3-year cycle.

Once compliance is achieved, the Certificant status will be updated and their name will be reinstated on RIA’s Website Referral Network.


This policy outlines the process for Certificants who have gone beyond the Lapsed Grace Period Policy and want to reinstate their certification.

  1. Lapsed Certificants who have not paid the renewal fee and/or have not submitted the appropriate CECs within the five-month grace period will be moved to “INACTIVE” status on June 1st.
  2. They cannot be recognized as an active, practicing Certificant.
  3. Their contact information will be removed from RIA’s Referral Website.
  4. An INACTIVE Certificant who has been out of compliance past the five-month grace period may regain “Active” status by complying with the following reinstatement guidelines:
    • Payment of past –due certification fees
    • Payment of late fee for each missed cycle
    • Retake a Recertification Exam for specific certification
      • Payment of recertification exam fee
      • Exam will be administered online
      • Open Book
      • 50- or 100- multiple choice questions culled from the existing Exams
      • Must pass with the RIA-required 80% score
  5. Upon compliance of the above, the Certificant’s certification cycle will be retroactive to the original cycle date.

To obtain a certification reinstatement form, contact

Reference Documents