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The Lowdown: What’s Covered on the New CII R08 Exam

The Lowdown: What’s Covered on the New CII R08 Exam

In April this year, the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) unveiled a new exam aimed at helping financial planners, paraplanners and those in related roles familiarise themselves with the pension reforms implemented from 6 April 2015 onwards. In this article you’ll find out what’s covered on the exam.

The exam is a useful method of carrying out structured CPD (up to 50 structured CPD hours) and of gaining (if passed!) 10 Diploma level credits towards the CII’s Diploma and Advanced Diploma in Financial Planning, and the Certificate in Life and Pensions.

The exam, called R08 Pensions Update, is open to candidates who have an existing knowledge of pensions, and who have ideally already passed an existing CII pensions exam such as the level six AF3 Pension planning or a level four unit such as R04 Pensions and retirement planning or J05 Pension income options.

R08 covers the following broad topics (learning outcomes):

  • Changes to the HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) tax regime introduced by the Taxation of Pensions Act 2014.
  • New legislative, reporting and compliance requirements arising from the pension reforms.
  • New developments in pension provision.
  • The main changes in the rules for members transferring their benefits.
  • Changes to pension income options.
  • Changes that will be made to State pension provision from 06 April 2016.
  • Key factors that should be taken into account when advising a client how to derive an income in retirement.

At 259 pages long, the CII R08 manual clearly contains plenty for students to sink their teeth into. The topics covered inevitably involve a fair degree of overlap with the R04 syllabus for 2015/16, but with R04 having a much broader focus than R08, which focuses purely on what has changed as a result of the pension reforms and on the financial planning implications that follow on from these changes.

The exam itself, in keeping with most of the other ‘R0’ papers (except R06), as it is a multiple choice exam comprising 40 multiple choice questions (MCQs) as well as 1 case study comprising 5 MCQs. The exam is 1 hour long and the pass mark is 65%. It can be sat at any time, provided exam places are available in the online testing centre where the student wishes to sit it. The exam is expected to be very popular, especially in its early months with the CII recently reporting in excess of 500 enrolments, so early booking is recommended to avoid delays due to limited availability of places in test centres. Exams sittings became available from 3 August, and the study text is available either as a printed book or as an eBook.

Brand Financial Training wishes to help those who intend to sit R08 and have released three mock question banks set at level 4 Diploma standard.

Grab the resources you need!

If you’re planning to sit this new exam, why not give yourself an edge in your efforts to prepare? Get our free taster to try out our mock exam papers for yourself.  Click the link to download the R08 mock exam taster now!

Grab our taster mock exam paper for CII R08 Click here to download.

Over to You…

So what do you think? Do you feel like you could sink your teeth into this new CII exam?