LAST UPDATED: May 20, 2020

CFA exam / Registration


2020 & 2021 CFA® Exam Registration:

How to Enroll in Level 1 and Level 2 CFA® Exams

IMPORTANT: Due to COVID pandemic, CFA Institute has made the decision to postpone the June 2020 CFA Exam administration globally. June 2020 candidates (all levels) may take their exam in December 2020. Read more here

Dec 2020 candidates may register for their exam until 9 September. Also, Feb 2021 registration opens on 17 June and ends on 3 Nov. Exam registration means you have to pay relevant fees. There are 3 registration fee deadlines: early, standard, and final (only the Dec exam).

CFA Exam Registration?
More Than Payment!

CFA exam registration is not only about entering the list of candidates and paying for the exam. It is also strongly linked with the CFA Program entrance requirements, scholarships available to many or the responsibility you accept as a candidate when you register for your exam.

Additionally, for Feb 2021 candidates, it is associated with the necessity to self-schedule the exam.

CFA Exam Requirements: Can I Enter the Program?

To be able to enroll in the list of exam candidates and take your CFA exam, you must have:



a bachelor’s (or equivalent) degree or be a final-year student.

4 years of professional work experience (investment related or not).

a combination of professional work experience and education totaling 4 years.

Note that residents of Syria, Cuba, North Korea and the Crimea region of the Ukraine, as well as Specially Designated Nationals are prohibited from participating in the CFA Program in accordance with the OFAC Compliance Policy.

Level 1 CFA Exam Registration
Step by Step


To register for your level 1 CFA exam, you first need to create an account at the CFA Institute website. Usually, it’s done just before actual registration for the exam. However, if you’re eligible and plan to apply for Access Scholarship or Women’s Scholarship, you will need to register at the CFA Institute website much earlier to be able to submit your scholarship application.

Check if you can apply for a scholarship before you register for your CFA exam. Read more about when to register & pay for your exam if you apply


The next step of your registration involves fee payment. If you are awarded a scholarship, the payment will be substantially reduced.

If you are ineligible for a scholarship, you’ll have to pay relevant fees to register for the exam you want to sit. Your CFA exam cost will depend on when exactly you decide to register. There are 3 registration fee deadlines. The first one is for early birds. The second is called standard and is most probably optimal when considered price-wise and time-wise. The last deadline is the most expensive and it seems it won't apply to new computer-based level 1 exams:

CFA Exam Registration Fees & Deadlines for Dec 2020 & Feb 2021

CFA Exam Cost Dec 2020 Registration Deadline Feb 2021 Registration Deadline
Early Registration USD 700 25 March 2020 13 August 2020
Standard Registration USD 1000 19 August 2020 3 November 2020
Final Registration USD 1450 9 September 2020 n/a

NEWCOMERS ONLY: $450 one-time program enrollment fee

Additionally, when you register for your first level 1 CFA exam ever, you have to pay a one-time enrollment fee of USD 450 at registration. The amount is the same regardless of the registration deadline or the exam you choose.

CFA Exam Fees Summed Up

CFA Program Enrollment Fee CFA Exam Registration Fee
USD 450 in USD: 700 (early), 1000 (standard), 1450* (final)
your first level 1 CFA exam only the sooner you register, the lower the fee
paid only once paid before every exam (incl. retakes)
valid throughout your whole candidacy valid only for particular exam
non-refundable** non-refundable** and non-transferable

* For the Feb 2021 exam, there will be no final registration fee (only early and standard).

** Limited fee refund availability is regulated by the CFA Program Refund Policy.

The moment you pay for your first Level 1 CFA exam, you enter the CFA Program. It means you accept responsibilities that go hand in hand with your candidacy. During your registration, you are asked to agree to the provisions of Candidate Agreement. It specifies for example possible exam violations and relevant testing policies but it also tells you when your exam can be deferred. You must also submit your Professional Conduct Statement (disclosing relevant reprimands, investigations, litigations, etc.) upon your first CFA exam registration and then annually and before every next exam registration.

Always submit your Professional Conduct Statement on time or you will be excluded from the CFA Program.

February 2021 Level 1 Exam

If you're a Feb 2021 candidate, don't forget to self-schedule your exam within the Feb exam window. The window ranges from 23 February to 1 March and you can choose when exactly you want to take your level 1 exam. Mind, however, that for some regions and test centers the exam window may be shorter. So, be sure to get familiar with the test center info when choosing your exam day.

The scheduling period is longer than the registration period. You can register for your level 1 Feb 2021 exam until 3 November 2020 and you can schedule your exam until 22 November 2020. Also, a rescheduling option paid USD 250 is available to Feb 2021 candidates. It means that you can reschedule your exam within your exam window depending on seating availability. The rescheduling deadline is 25 January 2021.


The decision about entering the CFA Program can be a long-lasting process. You may know you’d like to take your CFA exam one day but you may need some time before you actually register for an exam. Besides, life often verifies our hopes and postpones our plans.

But even if you do not register for the nearest CFA exam, it’s worth registering at a learning portal like Soleadea the moment you set the CFA exam as your future goal. Why? Because a decision about CFA Program enrollment is a serious one and you could surely use some help while getting there (and even more if you actually register for the December 2020 or February 2021 exam).

At Soleadea, registration is free and you get your personalized study plan right away. Inside, you’ll find lots of study tools and materials (some are free and some are premium). You’ll get to know how much you should study per week and get some idea of how your study routine should look like. Outside the exam study planner, you’ll also find many valuable contents concerning the CFA designation and CFA exam and you’ll be guided towards the best way to prepare for your exam.

My 1st Registration: Steps to Follow

1. register with CFA Institute

apply for the scholarship if you’re eligible

2. register for your level 1 CFA exam:

wait for your scholarship if you apply

pay the due fees

NOTE: different registration fee deadlines + enrollment fee for those ineligible or not accepted for a scholarship

read and accept your Candidate Agreement + submit your Professional Conduct Statement

Feb 2021? Self-schedule your exam date!

3. register at Soleadea – consider making it STEP 1

set up a free CFA exam study plan

get access to many study tools and materials

learn the best way for your study routine based on the weekly approach

Level 2 CFA Exam Registration

If you're a level 2 candidate, you can take your exam only in June. Currently, no level 2 registration is open. We'll have all the dates and fees here for you as soon as they are out.

Basically, enrolling in your level 2 CFA exam does not differ much from your level 1 registration. If – however – you have your doubts, the list below shows how to register for the level 2 exam (or another level 1 exam if you need to retake it):

  1. You already have your CFA Institute account.
  2. If you’re eligible for a scholarship – just apply for it before the deadline and then wait for the official decision before you register and pay for your exam [LEARN MORE].
  3. If you’re ineligible for a scholarship – relevant registration fees and deadlines apply (there is no enrollment fee for you, though).
  4. Candidate Agreement needs to be accepted and Professional Conduct Statement submitted – no change here.
  5. Also, no changes as far as well-planned prep goes: create a study plan that adapts to your needs but stays demanding!

Smart Preparation Starts With Smart Planning

When your plans have this dangerous tendency to fall through - you need more than just timetabled topics!

You need concrete readings assigned to concrete study weeks,
weekly progress assessments,
and all the means to stay in charge!


CONTROL your CFA exam prep using WEEKLY study schedules