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Membership Requirements: U.S. Versus Canada

Dear Editor:

Exams 7 and 8 have alternatives: the U.S. specific exams, 7 (U.S.) and 8 (U.S.), or the Canadian specific exams, 7 (Can) or 8 (Can). A student who passes the U.S. specific exams (in addition to all the other parts) becomes an FCAS; but a student who passes the Canadian specific exams instead of the U.S. specific exams (and completes 18 months of Canadian specific experience) gets one more designation - in addition to becoming an FCAS, they become an FCIA (Fellow of the Canadian Institute of Actuaries).

An FCAS who passes the U.S. specific exams cannot get their FCIA status even if they move to Canada and work for many years. They must pass the Canadian specific exams. But an FCAS/FCIA can move to the U.S. and practice his profession and sign important reserve opinions, although he has not mastered the vital areas of U.S. accounting and U.S. regulations. This is not equitable.

The position taken by the CIA is laudable and sound. The position of the CAS is not sound, in that it puts its members in a disadvantageous position.

This can lead to inequities and games played by smart students:

I suggest four alternative solutions:

This approach is more humane, plus it will bring the two societies together under one umbrella and will eliminate the inequity that currently exists.

I am willing to present my views in any CAS forum or committee. Let me hear from you if you think I have a point or if you don't agree with me [(770) 951-2782].
Sri Ramanujam, FCAS, FCIA