Advisors with an Accredited Investment Fiduciary (AIF®) designation have successfully completed a specialized program on investment fiduciary standards and subsequently passed a comprehensive examination demonstrating their knowledge and competency in the area of fiduciary responsibility. AIF® designees are committed to standards of investment fiduciary excellence.
A fee-only planner is someone who, in all circumstances, is compensated solely by the client, with neither the advisor nor any related party receiving compensation that is contingent on the purchase or sale of a financial product. Fee-only planners do not receive commissions, rebates, awards, finder’s fees, bonuses, or any form of compensation from others as a result of a client’s implementation of his or her planning recommendations.
Under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), a fiduciary is any person, company, or association that renders investment advice for a fee or other compensation with respect to the funds or property of a plan, or who has the authority to do so. A fiduciary exercises discretionary authority or control over the management of a plan or the management of the disposition of its assets, or has the discretionary authority or responsibility in administering a plan. Most importantly, a fiduciary is bound to always act in the best interests of the client.