NIPA provides practical information and effective, relevant designation programs necessary to achieve career advancement and improve day-to-day performance. Through NIPA’s Accredited Pension Administrator (APA) program, you will earn a prestigious designation that carries with it a sense of personal accomplishment and demonstrates your professional competency.
NEW! Receive $1,000 towards your APA Designation through the PenChecks NIPA APA Designation Scholarship. Learn more about the requirements for applying for the scholarship.
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APA Designation Benefits
As an APA student working toward a designation, you will gain comprehensive insight into the knowledge and skills needed to successfully perform daily administrative tasks, including: determining eligibility; allocating contributions; fulfilling reporting and disclosure requirements; processing distributions; performing compliance testing; correcting errors and much more.
Potential APAs include:
- Pension administrators
- Retirement relationship managers
- ERISA compliance specialists
Earning the APA Designation
To earn the APA designation, students must complete four APA-self study courses and examinations, including APA Courses 1, 2, 3 and 4 (Courses 1 and 3 are open book). To maintain the designation, you must complete 15 hours of continuing professional education and hold a current NIPA membership (annually).
||Fundamentals of Qualified Plan Administration (pdf)
||A Comprehensive Guide to 401(k) Plans (online textbook)
||Distributions and Loans (three-part online textbook)
||Selected Topics in Retirement Plans (online textbook)
Additional APA/APR Designation Program Information
Calling all ERPAs!
For retirement plan professionals who obtain the Enrolled Retirement Plan Agent (ERPA) designation, NIPA will automatically grant the APR designation upon joining NIPA – no insurance license or FINRA series 6, 7,65, 66, 24 necessary! ERPA designees are also eligible to obtain the APA designation by taking a single open-book, comprehensive, online exam from their home or office.
To learn more about the 2015 program, download NIPA's 2015 Education Brochure.