Examination Waivers, Grandfathering & Transition Rules

ASPPA Examination Waivers
ERPA and CPC Module & Examination Waivers
CPC Transition Rules for Candidates Who Meet Exam Requirements for QPA Credential 
CPC Transition Rules for Candidates Who Have Passed C-3 or C-4 Examinations 
TGPC Credential Grandfathering 
NIPA Examination Waivers 
ASPPA Transition Credit Chart


ASPPA Examination Waivers 

RPF Examination Waivers 

  • ASPPA members with the credentials, FSPA, MSPA, CPC or QPA will be given credit for ASPPA’s RPF-1 examination for purposes of obtaining additional ASPPA credentials.
  • ASPPA members with the credentials FSPA, MSPA, CPC or QPA will be given credit for ASPPA’s RPF-2 examination for the purposes on obtaining additional ASPPA credentials other than the QKA or QPA credential.
  • Any credentialed or non-credentialed ASPPA member or examination candidate will not need to complete the RPF-1 or RPF-2 examinations if he/she has successfully completed the Pension Administrators Course: PA-1, PA-2 and PA-3.

Other ASPPA Examination Waivers

  • ASPPA members with the credentials FSPA, MSPA or CPC will be given credit for ASPPA’s DC-1, DC-2, DC-3 and DB exams for purposes of obtaining additional ASPPA credentials other than the QKA or QPA credential.
  • Exam candidates and ASPPA members having passed both the C-1 and the C-2(DC) examinations prior to 2004 are given credit for DC-3 for purposes of obtaining ASPPA credentials.
  • Exam candidates and ASPPA members having passed either the C-1 or C-2(DC) examinations prior to January 1, 1999 are given credit for the PA-1 and PA-2 examinations.

ERPA and CPC Module & Examination Waivers 

Once enrollment as an ERPA has been granted by the IRS, a candidate can submit an application for status as an ASPPA QPA credentialed member. QPA examination requirements (RPF-1, RPF-2, DC-1, DC-2, DC-3 and DB) will be waived for purposes of obtaining the QPA credential. An ERPA who has been awarded the QPA credential and wants to pursue the CPC credential will need to complete the four core CPC modules, two of the elective modules in addition to the DB and CPC proctored examinations. 


CPC Transition Rules for Candidates Who Meet Exam Requirements for QPA Credential 

A candidate who has met the exam requirements for the QPA credential will only have to complete four core modules and two of the elective CPC modules, in addition to the CPC proctored examination. 


CPC Transition Rules for Candidates Who Have Passed C-3 or C-4 Examinations

  • A candidate who has passed the C-3 exam only (not C-4) will receive credit for the Investments, Distributions & Loans and Fiduciary Topics modules. These candidates will need to complete the Related Groups & Business Transactions module, two elective modules and the proctored CPC examination, in addition to the QPA exam requirements to obtain the CPC credential.
  • A candidate who has passed C-4 exam only (not C-3) will receive credit for the Related Groups & Business Transactions and the two elective modules. These candidates will need to complete the Investments, Distributions & Loans and Fiduciary Topics modules and the proctored CPC examination, in addition to the QPA exam requirements to obtain the CPC credential.


Grandfathering – TGPC Credential 

Existing NTSAA designated members in good standing will be grandfathered upon joining ASPPA as follows:

  • Those with the Master Certified Retirement Specialist (MCRS) designation will be awarded the TGPC credential. An MCRS will need to complete ASPPA's credentialed membership application (available on the ASPPA Membership page) and apply for the TGPC credential (you will be notified when credential is awarded).
  • Those with the Certified Retirement Specialist (CRS) designation will be given credit for the TGPC-1 exam for purposes of obtaining the TGPC credential, but will need to take TGPC-2. Upon successful completion of the TGPC-2 examination, a CRS will need to complete ASPPA's credentialed membership application (available on the ASPPA Membership page) and apply for the TGPC credential (you will be notified when credential is awarded).


NIPA Examination Waivers

  • NIPA members with the credentials APA and APR will be given credit for RPF-1 for purposes of obtaining ASPPA credentials. 
  • NIPA's APA credential satisfies many requirements for ASPPA's CPC credential. Pension professionals holding NIPA's Accredited Pension Administrator (APA) credential may pursue ASPPA's advanced Certified Pension Consultant (CPC) credential by successfully completing ASPPA’s Certified Pension Consultant Online Modules (all core and 2 elective modules), Administrative Issues of Defined Benefit Plans (DB) examination and Certified Pension Consultant (CPC) examination. In addition to successfully completing the exams and modules, applicants must also have at least three years of retirement plan related matters experience. ASPPA’s RPF-1, RPF-2, DC-1, DC-2 and DC-3 examinations are waived for the purposes of pursuing the CPC credential. However, if a NIPA APA is interested in obtaining other ASPPA credentials then the successful completion of the required examinations will not be waived (except the RPF-1 as stated above in first bullet under NIPA examination waivers).