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CFA Program Refunds, Deferrals, and Withdrawals Policies

Refund Policy:

For candidates submitting an initial registration for CFA Exams in 2021, a full refund of your enrollment fee, registration fee, and any other sales tax payable and paid by the candidate in their country of residence is available within fourteen (14) days of payment (through 11:59 PM Eastern Time on the fourteenth day). An initial registration does not include a registration made to reschedule an exam sitting that was either deferred by the candidate or postponed by CFA Institute.  Due to fluctuating exchange rates, CFA Institute cannot guarantee the exact amount paid to CFA Institute will be the amount returned in currency other than US currency. After the fourteen-day period has ended, enrollment and registration fees are nonrefundable, even in the event of a medical condition or other extreme circumstance. Enrollment and registration fees are non-transferrable. Payments for print curriculum orders are nonrefundable once the order has been placed. CFA Institute strongly advises candidates against requesting a refund for an exam under these policies in an attempt to obtain a larger refund.

Postponed Candidate Refunds:

Per the terms of the Candidate Agreement, refunds are not normally offered once registration has been accepted. Due to the extraordinary global circumstances surrounding COVID-19, candidates twice impacted by COVID-19 circumstances will have the option to defer again or to request a refund. All fees paid with your original registration will be refunded; this applies to scholarship candidates as well. Details will be provided to all eligible candidates via email.

If your registration is cancelled due to COVID-19 and you exercise the complimentary deferral in your account for a 2021 administration, that action is binding and you will forfeit your right to request a refund.

Due to the extraordinary nature of this situation, it may take UP TO 120 days from the date the refund request window closes to process your request. 

Deferral Policy:

Deferrals to the next available exam are considered on a case-by-case basis, and only in the event of one of the following, impacting the candidate or a member of his/her immediate family:

  • government, employer, or university travel restriction due to COVID-19 that prevents a candidate from attending the exam (documentation required)
  • a positive COVID test within 60 days of the candidate’s scheduled exam appointment (documentation required)
  • concern over sitting for the exam because of COVID does not qualify for a deferral. CBT group sizes are smaller and the testing environment is easier to adhere to safety standards. Please watch this video from our exam vendor, Prometric, to learn what the exam day experience may look like as a result of COVID guidelines. 
  • life-threatening illness (candidate or immediate family member) in the exam window;
  • death of a candidate’s immediate family member;
  • mandatory military service (candidate only) in the exam window;
  • pregnancy (candidate only); or
  • natural disaster (candidate’s local area).

The candidate’s immediate family is defined as only the candidate’s parent, grandparent, sibling, spouse/domestic partner, or child. Deferral requests must be received by CFA Institute prior to or within 10 US business days after the exam window. Decisions on deferrals are final and are at the sole discretion of CFA Institute.

As a reminder, candidates are bound by the Code of Ethics at all times throughout their candidacy.

Withdrawal Policy:

CFA Institute offers a withdrawal option for all three levels of the CFA® exam.

If you know you will not be able to sit for the exam during your exam window, you may request to withdraw your exam registration until 5 days before the beginning of your exam window. Candidates that request to withdraw their exam registration must acknowledge that their enrollment and registration fees will not be refunded, deferred, or transferred to another exam cycle. 

If you do not withdraw by the deadline, you will not be able to re-register for the next exam until results for the current exam have been released (approximately 60 days after the exam date). Even after submitting your withdrawal request, you will be unable to register online until your withdrawal has been processed. Please allow up to 3 days for processing. Once processed, withdrawals cannot be reversed.