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View Poll Results: Should I maintain my EA?
Yes, keep it active at all times 1 25.00%
Let it slip to inactive and renew it every six years 1 25.00%
No, you aren't using it, get rid of it 0 0%
42 hours of credit 2 50.00%
Voters: 4. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 11-02-2018, 07:06 AM
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Woodrow Woodrow is offline
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Default Should I keep my EA?

Should I maintain my EA enrollment?

Background: I'm an FSA, EA. About 5 years ago I took a non-actuarial job. I like my new career, and don't think I'll move back to being a pension actuary, but it's nice to have it as a career fallback. I'm in my mid 40's.

The FSA is easy to keep up, the CE is mostly doing what I'd do anyway, and I'm willing to pay the dues for something I'm so proud of.

The EA is much more difficult, time consuming and expensive. I can attend some local seminars, so I can at least get my "formal program" credits without traveling. One problem is the cost, I end up paying an average of $100 per credit hour, so over $3,000 per cycle. I know the IRS used to offer free web credits, but I don't see those anymore.

Reading the EA regulations, it looks like I can let my status go to "inactive" but restart my EA by finishing 36 hours within the next three year period. For example, we are in the 2017-2019 cycle (right?), I can let it go inactive, and submit my credits anytime in the 2020-2022 cycle to become active again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by page 403 of the regs
During the first inactive enrollment cycle; 36 hours of qualifying continuing professional education .... must be completed. Any hours of continuing professional education credit earned during the immediately prior enrollment cycle may be applied in satisfying this requirement
That basically tells me I only need 36 credits every 6 years instead of every 3. Much more manageable and affordable.

What do people think?

Do you agree I'm understanding the regs above correctly?

The logical approach - since I don't expect to be a pension actuary again - is to let it lapse, but I don't think I'm ready to give up that safety net quite yet.

Last edited by Woodrow; 11-02-2018 at 07:12 AM..
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  #2  
Old 11-02-2018, 07:16 AM
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Reading a little more

Quote:
Continuing professional education credits applied to meet the requirements for reenrollment .... may not be used to satisfy the requirements of the enrollment cycle in which the individual has been placed back on the active roster

Damnit! Am I reading that right?

So, I have to do 36 hours when I come back off inactive, so I don't get six years for half price. All I get to do is drag my feet in deciding my status. It's almost like they didn't leave a big loophole in the rules.

So... who knows about some cheap EA credits?

Last edited by Woodrow; 11-02-2018 at 07:39 AM..
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  #3  
Old 11-02-2018, 08:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodrow View Post

So... who knows about some cheap EA credits?
Hook me up Id you figure this out. I have enough credits now for the 2020-2023 cycle but then Ill be going inacove.
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  #4  
Old 11-02-2018, 10:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NerdAlert View Post
Hook me up Id you figure this out. I have enough credits now for the 2020-2023 cycle but then Ill be going inacove.
The best I've found so far is ASPPA. I'm going to a meeting near Boston next week, $250 for 6.5 formal program credits.

It would be nice to get a few more free hours from the IRS. I'd even take $50 per hour at this point for something I could watch at home.
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  #5  
Old 11-02-2018, 11:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodrow View Post
The best I've found so far is ASPPA. I'm going to a meeting near Boston next week, $250 for 6.5 formal program credits.

It would be nice to get a few more free hours from the IRS. I'd even take $50 per hour at this point for something I could watch at home.
Do you have a local ASPPA chapter nearby (is that what you are doing in Boston)? They may have lunch meetings or do 1/2 - 1 day seminars that come out to a reasonable price per hour.

Alternatively, you could try going to a CCA annual meeting once every 3 years and get a good portion of the needed credits. It isn't necessarily cheaper, but they are usually held at nice resorts (it was at the Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs last month) so you could turn it into a family vacation and deduct a piece on your taxes.
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Old 11-02-2018, 11:49 AM
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I think you can also get recordings of SOA section webcasts for free (or maybe for cheap?) if you belong to the section. You can get EA credit by writing up a short summary of the webcast and submitting it to the SOA.
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Old 11-02-2018, 12:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenny View Post
Do you have a local ASPPA chapter nearby (is that what you are doing in Boston)? They may have lunch meetings or do 1/2 - 1 day seminars that come out to a reasonable price per hour.
Yes, that's what I'm doing. That's how I got my EA credits the last cycle, they are great - boring but affordable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kenny View Post
I think you can also get recordings of SOA section webcasts for free (or maybe for cheap?) if you belong to the section. You can get EA credit by writing up a short summary of the webcast and submitting it to the SOA.
This is great if it's true, and makes the $25 section fee well worth it.

Has anyone gotten credit this way? Can you tell me how it works?
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Old 11-02-2018, 12:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodrow View Post
Yes, that's what I'm doing. That's how I got my EA credits the last cycle, they are great - boring but affordable.



This is great if it's true, and makes the $25 section fee well worth it.

Has anyone gotten credit this way? Can you tell me how it works?
I tried to figure it out from the SOA website, but couldn't find a way to receive a section member discount. I might be mis-remembering the cost aspect.
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  #9  
Old 11-02-2018, 12:54 PM
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Woodrow, here is an option from ACTEX -- almost 4 hours of credit, along with the ethics credit, for $99. https://actexmadriver.com/product.aspx?id=453086563. We also have some webinars that are $69 for 1.5 hours of time.

However, to get formal credit, you need to be in the same room w/ two other people involved w/ pension work and have the opportunity to interact with the instructor. That can only happen for live webinars, and w/ at least 3 people in the room. However, if you get together with some others, or at a local company, that can also be a decent way to get it.
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Old 11-02-2018, 01:51 PM
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Regarding the SOA webcasts, if you are a member of a section, any webcasts put on by that specific section more than a year ago, are free to you. If you are looking for retirement webcasts, for example, you can find more information about what webcasts are avaialble here:

https://www.soa.org/sections/retirem...ement-landing/

I'm not sure what their policy is about issuing EA certificates for recorded webinars and for specific webinars, as I know that some webcasts qualify for EA Credit and some do not. For that, I would check with SOA customer service.
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