Online Delivery of the FINRA Regulatory Element of Continuing Education Approved

 The SEC  has approved amendments to FINRA Rule 1250 (Continuing Education Requirements) to provide for a Web-based delivery method for completing the Regulatory Element of the Continuing Education (CE) requirements.

The CE requirements under FINRA Rule 1250 include a Regulatory Element and a Firm Element.  The Regulatory Element applies to registered persons and consists of periodic computer-based training on regulatory, compliance, ethical and supervisory subjects, and sales practice standards, which must be completed within prescribed time frames.  Currently, the Regulatory Element may be administered in a test center or in-firm subject to specified procedures, but most registered persons complete the Regulatory Element in a test center.

Because of the costs and other concerns regarding the test center delivery method, FINRA amended Rule 1250(a)(6) to provide that the Regulatory Element program will be administered through Web-based delivery or such other technological manner and format as specified by FINRA.

The new Web-based delivery method, which will be called CE Online and administered through the FINRA CE Online System, will provide registered persons with the flexibility to complete the Regulatory Element at a location of their choosing, including their private residence, at any time during their 120-day window for completion of the Regulatory Element.

FINRA is rolling out the CE Online program in two phases.  FINRA will launch the first phase of CE Online, which will include the S106, S201 and S901 Regulatory Element programs, on October 1, 2015.  The second phase of CE Online will be launched by FINRA on January 4, 2016 and will include the S101 Regulatory Element program .

For additional information regarding the transition to CE Online, see FINRA Regulatory Notice 15-28.