“Steps to Becoming a Certified Retirement Financial Advisor,” by Darcy Bergen

Darcy Bergen, the president of financial advisory firm Clear Solutions for Seniors, holds the title of Certified Retirement Financial Advisor. This elite status recognizes an advisor’s experience and expertise in working with clients planning for or living in retirement.

To become certified, a professional must have at least three years of experience working in the financial services industry or the equivalent in classroom training. Qualified individuals then may take the certification exam, which tests the candidate’s expertise in financial planning for retired persons. The test consists of 100 questions and covers taxes, investments, insurance, and trusts.

Exam questions typically focus on applying financial knowledge to practical situations. The Society of Certified Retirement Financial Advisors grants certification to those candidates who receive a score of 70 percent or above on the four-hour test. Advisors who earn certification must maintain their status through continuing education and an annual pledge of ethical client services.