Frequently Asked Questions
Series 65 - NASAA Uniform Investment Adviser Law Exam
About the Series 65
What does the Series 65 qualify me to do?
A Series 65 license qualifies you as an investment adviser representative, enabling you to provide investment advice to clients.
Do I need to be sponsored to take the Series 65 exam?
No. If you’re not employed by a firm, you can still register to take the exam by paying the fee and opening an exam enrollment window via FINRA’s Test Enrollment Services System.
Does passing the Series 65 exam make me an accredited investor?
No, passing the exam alone is not enough. You must also be licensed as an investment adviser representative in your state and be in “good standing,” which means being in compliance with all state-specific licensing requirements, such as paying dues, etc.
Refer to the SEC’s Small Entity Compliance Guide for Amendments to the Accredited Investor Definition for more information.
Preparing for the Series 65 Exam
How long should I prepare for the Series 65 exam?
We recommend studying 100 hours over a five-week period.
Are there other FINRA exams I need to complete as a prerequisite to attempting the Series 65?
Taking the Series 65 Exam
How do I schedule my Series 65 exam?
NASAA exams are administered by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). A firm will file an electronic Form U4 for a candidate, or an individual will file a Form U10 and pay the registration fee to FINRA. Upon registering, a candidate will have 120 days to schedule the exam. You can find more details on the FINRA Test Enrollment Services System.
Where do I take the Series 65 exam?
How much does the Series 65 exam cost?
The cost of the exam is $187 at this writing.
How many questions are on the Series 65 exam?
There are 130 scored and 10 unscored questions for a total of 140 questions. These 10 unscored questions are randomly distributed so test-takers do not know which ones they are. The unscored questions are being tried out by the exam committee.
How many questions must I answer correctly to pass the exam?
In order to pass the Series 65 exam, you must correctly answer at least 94 of the 130 scored questions (72%). On June 12, 2023, the passing score changes to 70%, which requires getting 92 questions correct.
How long is the Series 65 exam?
You have three hours to complete the exam. You are allowed to take restroom breaks during the exam. However, the clock will continue counting down. See the FINRA website for more details on what to expect when taking your exam.
How long is the Series 65 exam valid for if I haven't been registered?
Passing an exam is a prerequisite to a license, not a license in and of itself. After passing the Series 65, you have two years to become registered (licensed) with a state; otherwise, the exam will show “expired” in the Central Registration Depository (CRD), and you will have to sit for the exam again. Once registered, the exam is valid as long as you stay registered.
Most states follow this two-year rule, but contact your state regulator for more information regarding your state’s registration rules and process. This NASAA webpage has contact information for state securities regulators.
If I stop working for my firm, how long will my Series 65 license remain valid?
You will have two years between jobs before the license expires.
When you stop working for a firm, your employer will file a Form U5 to terminate your registration. You then have two years to be re-employed and re-registered. Your next employer will file a Form U4, which will re-register you. As long as you do not exceed two years between employers, your Series 65 license will remain valid.
How do I keep my Series 65 license active?
- After you pass the Series 65 exam, you have two years to become registered (licensed) with a state as an investment adviser representative. Once registered, the exam remains valid as long as you stay registered. If your job is terminated (usually by the filing of a Form U5 by the employer), your state registration terminates as well. You then have two years to be re-employed and re-registered or the exam will show as “expired” in the Central Registration Depository (CRD).
- Starting in 2022, certain jurisdictions require investment adviser representatives (IARs) to complete yearly NASAA continuing education (CE) to keep their license active. Learn more about the CE requirement for IARs on the Solomon IAR CE FAQs page. Solomon is an approved IAR CE vendor – visit the Solomon IAR CE Course Library.
Does the Series 65 require continuing education?
Yes, if you’re an investment adviser representative (IAR) registered in a jurisdiction that has adopted the NASAA IAR Continuing Education requirement. To find out which states have adopted the IAR CE requirement, see the Solomon IAR CE FAQs page. Solomon is an approved IAR CE vendor – visit the Solomon IAR CE Course Library.
General exam questions? See our general FAQs.
For information about Solomon Series 65 exam study materials, please click here.