IR-2020-177: Joint Board announces temporary waiver of ‘physical presence’ education requirement for enrolled actuaries

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IRS Newswire August 10, 2020

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Issue Number:    IR-2020-177

Inside This Issue

Joint Board announces temporary waiver of ‘physical presence’ education requirement for enrolled actuaries

WASHINGTON –The Joint Board for the Enrollment of Actuaries today provided enrolled actuaries with notice that it is waiving the physical presence requirement for continuing professional education (CPE) credit for any formal programs conducted from Jan. 1, 2020, through Dec. 31, 2022. The Joint Board made this decision due to the hardships that the COVID-19 pandemic has caused, particularly those involving traveling to and participating in gatherings requiring close contact with others.

This waiver applies to all enrolled actuaries, whether they are in active or inactive status. Joint Board regulations require that no less than 1/3 of the total hours of continuing professional education credit required for an enrollment cycle must be obtained by participation in a formal program or programs. Without this waiver, an enrolled actuary earning credit hours for a formal program would have to participate in the program in the same physical location with at least two other participants engaged in substantive pension service.

Enrolled actuaries are still required to earn the same number of credit hours under formal programs that would otherwise be required. Although the physical presence requirement is temporarily waived, the other requirements for a formal program continue to apply, including all requirements for a qualifying program under the Joint Board regulations, attendance by at least three participants engaged in substantive pension service, and an opportunity for participants to interact with the instructor during the program. In addition, the certificate of completion or instruction issued by a qualifying sponsor of the program must indicate that the program is a formal program.    
The Joint Board is committed to protecting the health and welfare of enrolled actuaries and understands the challenges that this health pandemic creates. By waiving the physical location requirement while retaining all other steps to earn credit hours in formal programs, the Joint Board feels these measures serve to protect the well-being of enrolled actuaries by encouraging social distancing and reducing person-to-person contact without compromising the integrity of the CPE requirements.

An active or inactive enrolled actuary who did not receive a waiver notice by email should contact the Joint Board at


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