CFA Exam Deferral Policy

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You may want to take the CFA exam, but then you cannot take it and you wonder about the CFA exam deferral policy. It means that you need to know about CFA exam deferral policy and it can be read below according to the CFA Institute site.

Exam Deferrals

Let’s say that you are registered candidates. If so, and then you are not able to sit for your scheduled exam and you want to move to a new exam window, CFA Institute provides the options below.

  • August 2022 candidates
    Now, the deferral request is closed.
  • All other registered candidates
    They need to continue to check again for form availability closer to their exam window.

Paid Deferral

If you are scheduled candidates, you may be able to buy a USD 399 deferral up until 24 hours before your scheduled exam appointment that permits you to postpone your exam from your current exam window to a future exam window. Let’s say that you do not have a scheduled appointment. If so, you have up until 3 days following the close of the exam window to buy a deferral.

When a deferral is bought by you, you may defer your exam appointment for up to 12 months, depending on your exam level.

After you buy the deferral, then your registration and scheduled appointment will be cancelled soon. It is important for you to note that your decision is binding. For each paid registration, only one paid deferral is allowed. You are not able to defer a second time unless you pay for a new registration. There will not be refunds as well.

Emergency Deferral

As a candidate, you are able to request an Emergency Deferral up to 3 days following the close of the exam window. An emergency deferral is free for you if you are experiencing one of these conditions.

  • You or your immediate family member is experiencing life-threatening illness.
  • Your immediate family member passed away.
  • You are experiencing mandatory military deployment during the exam window.
  • You are in pregnancy.
  • Rescheduled exam by Prometric and after contacting Prometric, you are not able to find a new acceptable appointment date.
  • There is a government order restricting travel because of the local pandemic situation. (Documentation needs to be issued to a specific candidate or location. Note that public guidance about general COVID protocols is not accepted.)

In order to support a claim for an emergency deferral, at no cost, you need to provide documentation. After the deferral is approved, then you may be able to defer your exam appointment for up to 12 months, depending on your exam level.

Let’s say that you are not eligible for an emergency deferral or you are eligible but you are not able to provide the proper documentation. If it happens, you are not eligible for an emergency deferral and your request will be denied. However, you are able to buy a deferral.

You have to complete the emergency deferral form because it represents your consent for CFA Institute to use the information provided by you to verify your eligibility for an exam deferral and monitor exam deferral volumes. It is important for you to know that all deferral requests are subject to the terms of the Candidate Agreement, up to and including review by CFA Institute Professional Conduct department.

You have to wait up to six weeks for them to validate the documentation that you provide and to complete processing of the emergency deferral requests.

Covid Exam Cancellations

Let’s say that your exam appointment is cancelled because of government ordered Covid restrictions. If it happens, you will get a deferral at no additional cost. In case you buy a deferral and exams at your original test center are cancelled, you do not qualify for a no cost deferral or a refund. Your exam registration options in the future will depend on exam appointment availability. You will be emailed about the detailed information if your exam appointment needs to be cancelled.

According to the CFA Institute, here are the eligible exam windows for deferred August 2022 candidates.

Moving From You may qualify to register for one of the following windows depending on your level. Note that registration and scheduling deadlines apply and if registration has already closed for a window, you will not be allowed to register.
August – Level I February 23, May 23, or August 23
August – Level II May 23, or August 23
August – Level III February 23 or August 23

Some FAQs About Deferral

As also explained on the CFA Institute site, here are some FAQs about Deferral that you may need to know.

  • What is the difference between a paid deferral and an emergency deferral?
    You are eligible for an emergency deferral if you are in the situations that involve qualifying major hardships, and can provide the required documentation. And if for any reason you feel that you have to defer your scheduled exam, there is an option to defer for a fee.
  • Why is the price of paid deferral USD 399?
    CFA Institute has a contract with exam administrator and incurs extra expenses anytime a candidate changes their plans. So, they pay for your absence from an expected exam and the cost to arrange for seating for a future exam and also the cost of extending your Learning Ecosystem access.
  • If I have decided that I want to defer my exam, then what can I expect next?
    If you qualify for an emergency deferral, it will take up to 6 weeks for them to review and process your request. Then, you will get an email after your account has been updated. In case you pay to defer your exam, your registration and scheduled exam appointment will be cancelled soon. An email containing your registration voucher code for your next exam will be received by you. Your voucher code will also be seen in your Candidate Tile.
  • Where can we find the deferral form?
    If you registered for an exam, you are able to find the deferral form on the CFA Institute site when it is available for your exam window. As explained on the CFA Institute site, deferral requests for August 2022 will be accepted beginning 1 August. You need to wait until the deferral form is available for your window to submit your deferral request.

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