In addition to the Joint Board continuing education requirements, members of ASEA and the other US-based actuarial organizations are subject to the continuing education requirements of the qualification standards (QS) promulgated by the American Academy of Actuaries. The QS have been updated for Statements of Actuarial Opinion (SOAs) issued Jan. 1, 2023 or later.
Probably the most significant changes for ASEA members are as follows:
- In the 2008 QS, there was a lower continuing education standard for enrolled actuaries whose practice was limited to work covered required of enrolled actuaries (EAs) in ERISA. These actuaries were not required to meet the 30-hour per year annual continuing education requirement. So some ASEA members with a practice that did not include FAS/GAS work or expert testimony work were only required to satisfy the CE requirements of the Joint Board. All ASEA members issuing SOAs Jan. 1, 2023 or later, must satisfy the 30-hour per year and other requirements detailed in QS Section 2.2.
- An annual requirement for one hour of bias CE has been added. Bias topics are defined as “content that provides knowledge and perspective that assist in identifying and assessing biases that may exist in data, assumptions, algorithms, and models that impact Actuarial Services. Biases may include but are not limited to statistical, cognitive, and social biases.” See QS 2.2.6(b).
- For individuals who become an enrolled actuary Jan. 1, 2022 or later, there are some changes to the basic education requirements to issue pension SAOs which are not “related to ERISA, or of pension SAOs relevant to issues covered by Treasury Circular 230.” See QS 2.1 and 2.1.1. Individuals who become an enrolled actuary on or after Jan. 1, 2022, and wish to issue pension SAOs regarding FAS, regarding GAS or pension expert testimony must:
1. become an FSA in the SOA pension track and have relevant supervised experience,
2. work under the supervision of an FSA for one year, or
3. complete additional education in the subject matter of the SOA.
Hopefully, most ASEA members are already familiar with the above requirements and are almost done satisfying their 2022 CE so that they will be ready to issue SOAs Jan. 1, 2023. For those who are not familiar with the new requirements there is still time!
The new QS is available on the American Academy of Actuaries’ website. Of the 30-hour continuing education requirement, 24 hours including the 1-hour bias requirement can be met through self-study. If an actuary chooses to satisfy some of the requirement through self-study, please see QS Section 6.1 for suggested record-keeping.
Karen Smith, MSEA, is President, Nova 401(k) Associates.