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Frank C. Bearden, Ph.D., CLU, ChFC

Frank C. Bearden, Ph.D., CLU, ChFC, is managing member at Ethics Consulting. Contact him at fbearden@ outlook.com or at 210-724-1958.

Recent posts by Frank C. Bearden, Ph.D., CLU, ChFC

3 min read

A Question of Ethics: Moving Through the Third Quarter

By Frank C. Bearden, Ph.D., CLU, ChFC on 9/7/22 10:00 AM

NAIFA Members Recognized as Forbes Top Financial Security Professionals 2022

Once again Forbes and SHOOK Research have selected the industry’s premier financial security professionals, answering the question “Would we recommend these professionals to a family member or friend?” The answer this year has resulted in 27 NAIFA members who serve Main Street USA by actively promoting financial literacy in their clients’ best interests and following the NAIFA Code of Ethics. You can view the list of these professionals in Advisor Today. While these professionals clearly support each of the 9 obligations in the NAIFA Code, we can be sure they are reflections of obligations 2 and 5:

Topics: Leaders Ethics
3 min read

A Question of Ethics: Moving Through the Second Quarter

By Frank C. Bearden, Ph.D., CLU, ChFC on 6/23/22 10:00 AM

Examples of Following the Code

NAIFA Foundation for Financial Security

The first example of ethical behavior comes from a decision by NAIFA to form the NAIFA Foundation for Financial Security, which is intended to grow the number of ethical financial services professionals to better serve American households and small businesses.

The Foundation is intended to increase the number of practicing advisors and will advance financial literacy and promote financial security among all Americans, with an emphasis on traditionally underserved and underrepresented populations. To this end, NAIFA returned for NAIFA's 7th Annual Diversity Symposium on May 23, 2022. 

Topics: Diversity & Inclusivity Ethics Federal Advocacy NAIFA Foundation
3 min read

A Question of Ethics: Through the First Quarter

By Frank C. Bearden, Ph.D., CLU, ChFC on 5/3/22 10:00 AM

Examples of Following the Code

When we think about the NAIFA Code of Ethics, we are a third of the way through 2022, and this is a good time to review how some of the key activities either about to occur or that have already occurred reflect on our ethical standards. 

2022 Congressional Conference in Washington, D.C.

One of our key activities that occurs each year and will soon be held is the 2022 Congressional Conference in Washington, D.C. We can be proud of the active involvement of NAIFA members in the political activities that ensure our democracy in our country will survive and thrive.

Topics: Diversity & Inclusivity COVID-19 Ethics
3 min read

A Question of Ethics: Viewing Our Ethical Activities for 2022

By Frank C. Bearden, Ph.D., CLU, ChFC on 2/11/22 8:00 AM

In viewing the New Year already one month old, we as members of NAIFA have a number of areas of ethical focus as we begin to engage 2022. I thought a good beginning in reviewing these would be to take a brief review of the obligations of our NAIFA Code of Ethics for the new year, and how we have engaged these obligations. We’ll begin at the beginning with the first obligation.  

1) To help maintain my clients’ confidence and protect their right to privacy. 

At first reading, this may seem to be a small obligation, until we realize this means not to discuss our clients’ private financial matters, even among associates, unless done so in confidence. Like several other obligations, this seems to be a small matter, but it really isn’t.

Topics: Running Your Practice Ethics
2 min read

A Question of Ethics: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

By Frank C. Bearden, Ph.D., CLU, ChFC on 11/30/21 10:30 AM

What is going on as of November 2021, as we draw 2021 to a close? In considering a couple of ethical issues I was planning to discuss, I happened to be viewing our Fall/Winter paper publication of Advisor Today, which states that our NAIFA leadership has signed Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) pledges. It quickly occurred to me how important this decision was. In taking this step forward, our CEO Kevin Mayeux, CAE, joined almost 2,000 CEOs in becoming a member of the CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion Coalition, signing a pledge to collaborate in supporting a more inclusive environment.

Topics: Diversity & Inclusivity Ethics
2 min read

A Question of Ethics: When Acting in a Client’s Best Interests May Not Appear Acceptable to the Client

By Frank C. Bearden, Ph.D., CLU, ChFC on 9/7/21 1:32 PM

Since my last column, we have had some successes with the COVID-19 vaccines in the United States, and some additional difficulties with new variants such as the delta variant. The available vaccines do appear to be effective against the delta variant, but inoculated persons can still become infected. Usually, they do not require hospitalization. In this light, advisors should continue to be careful and use virtual means of communication with clients (Zoom, MS Teams, etc.) as needed.

Topics: Ethics
3 min read

A Question of Ethics: Expanding Our Services as Progress Against COVID-19 Continues

By Frank C. Bearden, Ph.D., CLU, ChFC on 6/23/21 9:03 AM

At this mid-year point, we are finally experiencing what we hoped in the fight of our country to reduce the incidents of COVID-19. We're seeing the lowest level of new cases and deaths in almost a year due to progress with vaccines. With this encouraging trend, what are some of the services we should focus upon to provide, following the directives of our NAIFA Code of Ethics?

Topics: Practice Management COVID-19 Ethics
3 min read

A Question of Ethics: Hopefully the Beginning of the End of COVID-19

By Frank C. Bearden, Ph.D., CLU, ChFC on 2/25/21 1:40 PM

NAIFA members are facing significant challenges as clients and their families go through a serious health crisis. All over the United States NAIFA members are experiencing an acceleration of the COVID-19 virus, and the hopeful news as more and more people are vaccinated. In this difficult trying time, we might ask how NAIFA members can fulfill our Code of Ethics, and which obligations have important application?

Topics: COVID-19 Ethics

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