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Advisor Complaint Process

We maintain a consumer complaint portal  and will promptly investigate and adjudicate complaints about advisors using the CSLP® designation. To file a complaint, click here

The following are examples of acts and omissions that shall warrant disciplinary action:

  • Any act that would lead to the suspension of a professional license.
  • Any act or omission that violates the criminal laws of any state or of the United States.
  • Any act of omission that violates the CSLP® Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Conduct.
  • Any false or misleading statements made to the CSLA Board of Standards.
  • Failure to respond to a request for information from the CSLA Board of Standards..
  • Other personal or professional misconduct.

Complaint Procedure and Disciplinary Process

To protect student loan borrowers, the integrity of the CSLP® designation, and in fairness to designees, the Certified Student Loan Advisors Board of Standards (the Board) adheres to the following:

The Board will prominently display and maintain a consumer complaint portal at https://www.cslainstitute.org/borrowers/advisor-complaint-process/. Complaints shall be reviewed by a member of the Board within 14 days of receipt. When a complaint alleges that a CSLP® designee has engaged in misconduct, the reviewing member of the Board will initiate the following:

Advisor Notice of Investigation – Written Notice of Investigation will be sent via email and post to the advisor’s last known address. The Notice will include the substance of the complaint, a deadline for submission of a written response and an opportunity to request an evidentiary hearing.

Right to Respond and Right to a Hearing – The advisor will have 45 days to prepare and submit a written response to the Complaint. Upon request and at the discretion of the Board, an advisor may be granted a 30-day extension of time to respond. In the response, the advisor may choose to request an evidentiary hearing.

Failure to Respond – If no response is received, the Board will assume the truth of the facts alleged in the Complaint and proceed to adjudication.

Right to Evidentiary Hearing – Upon request of the advisor, the Disciplinary Committee of the Board will conduct an evidentiary hearing via web conference. The advisor may have legal counsel, cross examine witnesses and present evidence.

Findings of Fact – The Disciplinary Committee shall consider the Complaint, the advisor’s Response, and any evidence offered at the hearing in order to determine facts.

Board Determination – The Committee shall present its findings of fact and accompanying recommendations to the full Board. The Board shall make a final decision on what, if any, disciplinary action will be handed down. The decision of the Board is final and cannot be appealed absent a showing of previously unavailable exculpatory evidence.

Disciplinary Action – If the Certified Student Loan Advisor Board of Standards finds misconduct, it may impose disciplinary action. All actions taken by the Certified Student Loan Advisor Board of Standards, except a private warning, may be publicly disseminated. Disciplinary actions may include the following:

  • Private written warning
  • Public letter of reprimand
  • Suspension of the right to use the CSLP designation for a specific period of time 
  • Permanent revocation of the right to use the CSLP designation

Example Notice of Investigation

To:
From: Certified Student Loan Advisor Board of Standards
Regarding: Notice of Investigation
Right to Respond — DEADLINE: 45 days from this Notice
Date:

The Certified Student Loan Advisor Board of Standards (the Board) has received the following submission through its consumer complaint portal:

[Quote complaint]

Please provide a written response within 45 days of this letter. If you do not, the Board will assume the truth of the facts alleged in this complaint.

You have the right to request an evidentiary hearing. If you request a hearing, the Board will set a date for a hearing within 30 days of your response and request for hearing. You may have legal counsel, cross examine witnesses, and present evidence.

The Board will make findings of fact and determine whether there is a violation of the Code of Ethics and Standards of Professional Responsibility. If a violation is found, the Board will take disciplinary action. Disciplinary action can include publication of a finding of misconduct and permanent revocation of the CSLP® designation.