Frequently Asked Questions: IWI Certificants

Have questions about what’s required to stay certified through Investments & Wealth Institute? See the extensive FAQs list below, which covers how to maintain your certification, report your continuing education (CE) requirements, and how IWI conducts CE audits.

If you have a question that isn’t addressed, please reach out to our team and we will be happy to assist you.

Maintaining Your Certification

What do I need to do to maintain my CIMA®, CPWA®, and RMA® certifications?

  • Complete and report a total of 40 CE hours including two ethics hours and one hour of taxes and regulations

  • Pay the certification renewal fee

  • Complete the compliance requirements—Compliance (U4 disclosures) and Investments & Wealth Institute Code of Professional Responsibility disclosure

Please review the Renewal Requirements page for more information on maintaining certification.

Do I have to be an IWI member to keep my certification?

All CIMA®, CPWA®, and RMA® certificants receive an automatic Investments & Wealth Institute Basic membership that lasts two years. If you maintain your certification, then you’re an active member.

IWI membership aligns with your certification renewal date. While a Basic membership is provided, members can upgrade to Signature or Elite membership at the time of renewal or anytime during their two-year membership period. By upgrading to Signature or Elite membership, certificants receive exclusive benefits to the CE library, discounts on events and courses, and more.

Do I have to earn all CE hours with Investments & Wealth Institute?

No. CE can be earned from a variety of preapproved providers as well as Investments & Wealth Institute. Visit the CE Sponsors page to find the preapproved providers.

How can I restore my expired CIMA®, CPWA®, or RMA® certification?

There is an option available to former CIMA®, CPWA®, or RMA® certificants to reinstate their right to use the registered Marks by completing a continuing education requirement. Reinstatement is not available to former CIMC® designees.

A reinstatement application must be submitted to initiate reinstatement process. A reinstatement fee of US$300 must accompany the application, and the individual must pass a background check for the reinstatement application to be accepted. Upon acceptance, the applicant must complete and report 60 CE hours, including 2 hours of ethics, and 1 taxes/regulations CE hour within 6 months of the reinstatement application being accepted.

Can I carry CE hours over into my next renewal period?

Yes. CIMA®, CPWA®, and RMA® certificants can carry over up to 10 CE hours to the next renewal period if they were earned within the last six months of the current period.

Do I have to earn 120 hours of CE if I hold all three designations?

No. The CE topics and hours that are accepted apply toward all three certifications.

Can I have an extension to get my CE hours?

No, unfortunately extensions are not available.

  • Not Licensed: Certificants who have not met the three renewal requirements will receive an email stating they are no longer licensed on the next business day after certification renewal requirements are due. Then you will have an additional week to meet all requirements before receiving an official relinquishment letter.

  • Relinquishment: A Relinquishment letter, reinstatement policy, and reinstatement application are mailed via certified mail one week after the “Not Licensed” email is received.

When will I receive a renewal reminder?

You will receive automated emails leading up to your renewal date, starting 1 year from your renewal date.

I can’t meet my CE requirements because I am having medical issues. What should I do?

We offer a leave of absence for IWI certificants in this situation. Please send an email (30 days before renewal date) requesting a leave of absence (LOA) to recertification@i-w.org. LOA requests are typically approved for a variety of reasons, including personal illness, family emergency, pregnancy difficulties, taking care of a sick family member, and more. Unfortunately, unemployment and job changes aren’t LOA-approved.

I’m retiring. Is there a retirement status?

No, we do not offer a retirement status. You can remain certified if you meet all three renewal requirements. Certificants who are retiring may submit a request to voluntarily drop their certification. “Voluntary Drop” status means you will no longer be certified. Should you wish to reclaim certification, you will have to go through a reinstatement process. Voluntary Drop requests must be sent to recertification@i-w.org.

I need to verify my certification. Can I receive something in writing that confirms I hold certification and it is in good standing?

Yes. We have an email named “Letter of Good Standing” that confirms you hold an active certification, and it is in good standing.

Can I pay the certification renewal fee over the phone?

No. We do not accept payments over the phone. Certification renewal payments may be paid online under the “My Renewal Requirements” area of your account Dashboard.

How can I submit my CE?

You may report CE online through your Dashboard. After logging into your Dashboard, click “Report CE” to begin the reporting process.

Can I see all the courses that have been posted to my CE record?

Yes. Under the “My Renewal Requirements” area of your Dashboard you’ll find a CE Summary button that provides a summary of CE courses and programs that have been reported to your current renewal period.

Can I get a CE summary for a past renewal period?

Yes. Click the “CE Summary Button” under “My Renewal Requirements.” You’ll see a drop-down menu at the top of the page that will allow you to select a past renewal period.

How can I obtain a receipt for a payment I made?

You may print a receipt from the “My Transactions” area of your Dashboard. You’ll see a “My Transactions” link on the left side of your dashboard.

I’m planning to attend a conference next week that is not pre-approved. Can you tell me if it will be accepted for CE?

Unfortunately, we are unable to verify CE over the phone. Also, we are unable to review events before they occur.

Is there someone I can talk to about my certification?

Yes, please contact us at +1-303-770-3377 to speak with a Customer Care Representative, or reach out us via email at certification@i-w.org.

CE Audit

How do CE audits typically work?

If your CE record is selected for audit, you will receive an email outlining the courses that have been pulled for audit. You will have 30 days to provide documentation for the courses listed in the email that shows completed CE hours for review and approval. You only need to verify Sponsored CE and Self-Reported CE, not Premier CE offered by Investments & Wealth Institute.

Can I be audited before my certification expires?

No, you will only be audited after completing renewal.

What documentation do I need to prove that I completed my CE program?

You must provide documentation that supports the "3 Cs"(content, completion, and clock time).

  • Proof of Completion: Acceptable documentation from the CE provider includes (1) a certificate of completion with your name, date of completion and program name; (2) a confirmation or email from a conference or event provider verifying your attendance; (3) a sign-in sheet; (4) a final attendee list completed after the conclusion of the event; (5) or a CFP Transcript showing completion of the event. Please note: For conferences, only overall completion is needed, completion documentation for individual sessions is not necessary.

  • Proof of Content: Acceptable documentation supporting proof of content includes clear information about the topics covered, showing that they are in line with our list of Accepted CE Topics. (1) For courses, provide documentation with course title. (2) For conferences provide a final agenda with the sessions you attended marked on the agenda. (3) For course or session titles that are vague, provide detailed content descriptions from the CE provider.

  • Proof of Clock Time: Acceptable proof of clock time is documentation from the CE provider that each event lasted a minimum of 50 minutes. CE is awarded based on a minimum 50-minute hour (every 50 minutes = 1 CE hour). Conference sessions that are under 50 minutes in length will be accepted as long as the combined total of conference hours attended are greater than 50 minutes.

  • More information on CE guidelines can be found here.

Will I be notified if I passed or failed the audit?

Yes, you will receive notifications from IWI regarding the steps you need to take along with your status throughout the entire process.

How long do I have to comply with the audit?

You will have 30 days from the date of your audit notification email to submit supporting documentation.

How do I submit my documentation?

All documentation can be submitted via email to audit@i-w.org or fax 303-770-1812.

What happens when my documentation is approved?

When acceptable documentation is received and approved, you will receive notification that your audit has been successfully completed. The audit will be officially closed, and your status will remain “Certified in Good Standing.”

What happens if my documentation is not received or the documentation I submit is not approved?

If documentation is received but is not in line with IWI’s CE standards, you will be asked to either submit additional documentation or additional completed CE for which you are able to provide appropriate documentation.

If no appropriate documentation is received by the deadline, your certification will be relinquished and your status changed to “Not Certified.” You are no longer permitted to use the marks. At this point, you would need to go through the reinstatement process (see policy here) to become certified and use the marks again. (Please note that there is no reinstatement option for the loss of the CIMC certification.)

For additional questions regarding the CE audit process, please contact the Certification Department at 1+ 303-770-3377 or email recertification@i-w.org.

CE Reporting

How do I self-report a CE course that has not been pre-approved?

Click the Report CE link from your Dashboard. Once in the CE reporting area, click the Self-Report CE link. You will be asked to list program details such as program title, provider, date attended, and credit hours and attest to completion of the program delivered through an independent third party—that is, not IWI or a registered CE Sponsor. A fee of $5 per CE hour will be required to report this CE online, and the CE credit is applied to your certification record immediately upon entry.

How much is the fee to report independent, third-party CE (Self-Reported CE)?

If you complete in-person or online CE from a third party that is not a CE Sponsor or IWI, you will pay a $5/per credit hour fee to add the hours to your CE record. The hours will be applied to the 40-hour CE requirement immediately upon entry.

Do I have to include documentation when I report independent, third-party CE (Self-Reported CE)?

No. You should retain all documentation in the event you are audited, but you will not upload, email, or mail supporting documentation when you report Self-Reported CE through your online Dashboard. Investments & Wealth Institute will not retain any documentation sent prior to the audit.

Is there a fee to use the online tool to report programs completed through a CE Sponsor?

No, programs completed through a registered CE Sponsor (Sponsored CE) can be reported through your online dashboard using the assigned program/course ID specific to that program. CE credit is applied to your certification record immediately upon completion, and no fee is applied.

How is “Premier CE” completed through Investments & Wealth Institute added to my record?

Both live and online programs completed through IWI will be reported on your behalf approximately 10 business days after a live event, and two business days after completion of an online program.