Becoming a Financial Planner in Indiana

In 2003, a study by Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business found that 2,126 millionaires resided in Indiana. An additional 6,936 Indianans that year reported incomes of $500,000 or more. The majority of the state’s millionaires reside in the Indianapolis area, however, income tax returns showing a million dollars or more in yearly income were also filed in Lake, Hamilton, St. Joseph and Allen Counties. Financial planners tend to be concentrated in these more affluent areas to serve the needs of the higher net worth individuals and families who often seek the expertise of professionals for investment, tax, retirement, and estate planning services.

A recent report published by the Indiana Business Research Center estimates that by 2020, school-aged residents of Indiana should make up 19.7 percent of the state’s total population. These numbers are projected to hold steady through 2040, with school-aged children expected to comprise about 19.5 percent of Indiana’s total population during the years between 2030 and 2040.

Both two-year community colleges and four-year colleges and universities in Indiana have recorded record enrollment numbers in recent years. As this trend of increased enrollment is expected to continue in the coming years, college-savings specialists will see an increased demand from Indiana’s families looking to put aside money to grow in tax-deferred and tax-exempt accounts to cover the rising cost of a college education.

The Indiana Business Research Center released numbers in 2007 projecting that by 2025, residents age 65 and over will comprise 18 percent of the state’s total population. By 2040, this percentage will jump to 20.6 percent. In 2040, seniors are expected to be heavily represented in Blackford County (comprising 25.5 percent of the county’s population), Brown County (31.4 percent), Lawrence County (25.6 percent), Newton County (27.1 percent), Ohio County (25.9 percent), Owen County (25.8 percent), Parke County (27.0 percent), Posey County (27.4 percent), Pulaski County (26.1 percent), Spencer County (25.6 percent), Tipton County (26.3 percent), Union County (26.7 percent), Vermillion County (25.0 percent), and Warren County (27.1 percent). This highlights an increasing demand for the retirement planning experts who’s unique sensibility and ethical considerations help Indiana’s oldest residents enjoy the comfort of sound investment strategies that produce some income while minimizing risk.

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How to Obtain an Investment Adviser License in Indiana

The Indiana Securities Division is responsible for registering and licensing investment adviser (IA) firms and representatives (IARs) so as to render them legally able to work in the state of Indiana. Registration through the IARD (Investment Advisor Registration Depository) system is the protocol for both state and federal level IA registrants. Indiana law states that anyone working as an investment adviser in the state must first pass the North American Securities Administrators Association’s (NASAA’s) Series 65 (Investment Adviser) examination; or the Series 7 (General Securities Representative) examination in combination with the Series 66 (Uniform Combined State Law) examination.

Major investment adviser firms, which employ many of the investment adviser representatives in Indiana, have offices located throughout the state. They include Hufford Advisors, LLC, Brokerage Consultants, Inc., BMO Harris Bank, and Merrill Lynch, all with offices in Indianapolis. Others include Old National Bank in Huntingburg; KeyBank in South Bend; JPMorgan Chase in Crawfordsville, Beech Grove, and Elkhart; and CNO Financial Group, Inc. in Carmel.

How to Obtain a Stockbroker License in Indiana

Broker-dealer agents, commonly known as stockbrokers, are licensed by the Indiana Securities Division by way of registration through the FINRA-managed Central Registration Depository (CRD). Securities sales gents in Indiana must pass the NASAA Series 7 (General Securities Representative) and Series 63 (Uniform State Law) exams. The Series 66 (Uniform Combined State Law) exam is optional, but the Series 24 (General Securities Principal) exam is required for principals of broker-dealer firms operating in the state.

Self regulatory organizations (SROs) like FINRA set standards for the continuing education (CE) of broker-dealer agents. FINRA’s Regulatory Element program must be completed after working as a broker-dealer agent for two years, then every three years throughout the agent’s career. This updated, interactive program helps keep broker-dealer agents abreast of changes in rules, regulations, and standards of practice within the securities industry. The Firm Element program, provided by broker-dealer firms, mandates that all broker-dealer firms supply their agents with training designed to keep them current on subjects related to sales practices and the products in which they deal.

How to Obtain a License to Sell Life Insurance and Fixed Annuities in Indiana

The Indiana Department of Insurance (IDOI) regulates life insurance producers working in the state. These licensed life producers may choose to sell fixed annuities, thereby becoming financial planners. Prospective life insurance producers must complete 24 hours of state-approved pre-licensing education, which may be self-study or in a live classroom format. IDOI-Authorized pre-licensing providers may be found here. Those with the following professional designations may be exempt from the pre-licensing requirement: Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU), Accredited Advisor in Insurance (AAI), Certified Financial Planner (CFP), Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriter (CPCU), Certified Insurance Counselor (CIC), or Chartered Financial Consultant (CFC).

The next step in life insurance producer licensing is to sit for the Indiana state insurance examination. Applicants will be tested on Indiana Laws and Regulations as well as Indiana Statutes pertaining to the life insurance line of authority. Licensing examinations are scheduled through the IDOI Testing Website .

Continuing education (CE) required by IDOI includes 20 hours of CE every two years. Department-approved independent self- study, classroom, computer based, and online courses are generally acceptable.

Licensed life insurance producers interested in becoming variable annuity agents must become licensed as securities sales agents, which means passing the Series 6 or the Series 7 Exams. The continuing education requirements of both the governing SRO and the IDOI must be met in order to maintain variable contract licensure.