The U.S. actuarial profession has established three kinds of standards.

1. The Code of Professional Conduct

The Code of Professional Conduct identifies actuaries’ ethical responsibilities to the public, to clients and employers, and to the actuarial profession.

2. Actuarial Standards of Practice

The ASOPs provide a framework for performing professional assignments and offer guidance on recommended practices, documentation, and disclosure.

3. Qualification Standards

The Qualification Standards specify requirements for basic education, experience, and continuing education that must be met by actuaries issuing statements of actuarial opinion (SAOs).

The three sets of standards are interrelated, as is reflected in the Code of Professional Conduct. The Code’s purpose, stated in its introduction, is “to require actuaries to adhere to the high standards of conduct, practice, and qualifications of the actuarial profession, thereby supporting the actuarial profession in fulfilling its responsibility to the public.” The Code specifically requires actuaries to comply with applicable ASOPs and Qualification Standards.

The ABCD investigates complaints alleging violations of the Code by members of participating organizations. It also responds to requests for guidance from actuaries who want help interpreting the Code or the standards of practice.