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CII Diploma in Regulated Financial Planning

CII Diploma in Regulated Financial Planning

The Retail Distribution Review (RDR) introduced many changes to the financial services industry in 2012 one of which was the requirement for financial advisers to hold a higher level of qualification to help improve the quality of advice. Under RDR the Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) Level 4 qualification became the minimum standard for an individual to work as a financial adviser.

The Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) Diploma in Regulated Financial Planning  is an RQF approved Level 4 qualification and covers the six required subject areas as specified by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) in the RDR.  To achieve the CII Diploma, you need to successfully complete all six of the following units.  Note that some individuals may be exempt from some units depending upon previous qualifications.

  • R01 – Financial Services, Regulation and Ethics
  • R02 – Investment Principles and Risk
  • R03 – Personal Taxation
  • R04 – Pensions and Retirement Planning
  • R05 – Financial Protection
  • R06 – Financial Planning Practice

The units can be completed in any order, but R06 should ideally be left to the end, as this unit draws on skills gained in the previous five units.

The CII Diploma in Regulated Financial Planning allows candidates to work as a financial adviser or planner. This may involve providing investment advice, pension planning and life insurance. In general, there are three types of financial adviser: independent financial advisers (IFA), who can advise on the products of any company and are required by law to give clients the most suitable advice for their particular circumstances; tied advisers, who work exclusively for one organisation, such as a bank or building society; and multi-tied advisers, who are authorised to sell the products of several companies.

This qualification meets all FCA standards and can be taken alongside existing work and personal commitments. The modular style of learning means candidates learn at their own pace, and the multiple-choice exam format provides them with immediate provisional results. There are over 50 test centres in city locations throughout the UK and the exams for R01-R05 are held on a daily basis through most workdays, making it easy to sit the exams at a convenient place and time. The final unit, R06, is held quarterly at specific dates and involves a written analysis of 2 case studies rather than multiple choice questions.

For further details of the CII Diploma in Regulated Financial Planning go to

Information in this article is correct as at May 2020