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Securities Industry CE Transformation

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Since 2018, FINRA has been working extensively with the Securities Industry/Regulatory Council on Continuing Education (CE Council) and other stakeholders to make enhancements to the CE program. On Sept. 21, 2021, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) approved amendments to FINRA Rules 1210 and 1240 to adopt these enhancements, and their effective dates were announced in Regulatory Notice 21-41. These program changes ensure that all registered persons receive timely and relevant training, which will in turn support compliance and investor protection. They also provide eligible individuals a means to maintain their qualification following the termination of a registration beyond the two-year qualification period by completing annual CE through the new optional Maintaining Qualifications Program (MQP). This latter enhancement reduces unnecessary impediments to requalification and promotes greater diversity and inclusion in the securities industry by attracting and retaining a broader and more diverse group of professionals.

Year-End System Shutdown

The CRD/IARD system shuts down for the year at 6 p.m. ET on Dec. 26, 2023, and CRD will not be available until the systems re-open on Jan. 2, 2024. The following Annual Regulatory Element CE reports will be available in FINRA Gateway for firm CE contacts and will include current data during the CRD shutdown period:

  • Annual Reg Element – CE Currently Required
  • Annual Reg Element – CE 2-Year Termed
  • Annual Reg Element – Currently CE Inactive
  • Annual Reg Element – Individuals CE Course Statuses

Firms may also view current CE status via the FINRA Gateway individual profile. Current CE statuses can be accessed via machine-to-machine interfaces on the API and Web EFT platforms as well.

As firms plan for year-end CE monitoring, they should consider that other reports or systems will not include updated information during the CRD shutdown period.

Industry professionals’ ability to complete their CE Regulatory Element requirement in FinPro will not be impacted by the shutdown.

Second MQP Enrollment Period

FINRA has announced a second Maintaining Qualifications Program (MQP) enrollment period for certain individuals who had an eligible registration terminated between March 15, 2020, and March 15, 2022.

To learn more, please visit the Second Enrollment Period section of the MQP page.

How to Prepare

  • Check back for more information. This page will be updated frequently with dates, details and resources as they become available.
  • Get ready for system changes. See the CE Systems Changes Release Notes and 2022.12 CRD Release Notes for more information.
  • Sign up for periodic email updates. Subscribe to the Registration and Testing Information list if you would like to receive periodic email updates about CE and other registration compliance programs.
  • Get on board with FinPro. Industry professionals—both currently and formerly registered—should create and maintain a FinPro (Financial Professional Gateway) account. Firms can also take advantage of FinPro’s tools to support their registration compliance program.

On This Page

Maintaining Qualifications Program (MQP)

Effective March 15, 2022, this program provides eligible individuals who terminate any of their representative or principal registrations with the option of maintaining their qualification for certain terminated registrations by completing annual CE.

This program is relevant to both current and former industry professionals, and certain enrollment deadlines will be imposed. Eligible individuals will be able to enroll and complete required training through FinPro. We encourage firms to communicate to their securities professionals about this program and advise them to create and maintain a FinPro account.

Annual Regulatory Element

Beginning Jan. 1, 2023, registered persons will be required to complete CE Regulatory Element annually by Dec. 31. Additionally, CE participants will receive content tailored specifically to each representative or principal registration category that they hold. Individuals who fail to complete their Regulatory Element within the prescribed annual deadline of Dec. 31 will be automatically designated as CE inactive by FINRA.

System changes will be implemented beginning Jan. 1, 2023, to align with the rule changes. See the CE Systems Changes Release Notes and 2022.12 CRD Release Notes to learn more.

FINRA and the CE Council will publish the Regulatory Element learning topics by no later than Oct. 1 of the prior year to provide firms with sufficient time to review the topics for the upcoming year. For more information about annual learning topics, consult the Regulatory Element Learning Plan tool below.

CE Firm Element

FINRA has amended the CE rules to extend the annual Firm Element requirement to all registered persons, including individuals who maintain solely a permissive registration consistent with Rule 1210.02, beginning Jan. 1, 2023. In conjunction with this change, FINRA has also amended the CE rules to expressly allow firms to consider training relating to the anti-money laundering compliance program under Rule 3310(e) and the annual compliance meeting under Rule 3110(a)(7) toward satisfying an individual’s annual Firm Element requirement. In addition, FINRA has revised the current minimum Firm Element training criteria to provide that the training must cover topics related to professional responsibility and to the role, activities or responsibilities of the registered person.

FINRA and the CE Council are committed to developing additional resources and guidance to support firms as they assess their education needs and develop their training requirements. See the CE Transformation Toolkit below for a growing collection of resources.

CE Transformation Toolkit

Resources for firms and securities industry professionals will be added below as they become available.