I Failed the CFE, Now What? CFE Remark?

The big question: Should you order a CFE Remark (also called an Appeal)? i.e. Is it worth the money?

This will depend. Have a look at your detailed results to determine if you should order a CFE Remark. What Day did you fail? What level did you fail at? Did you fail at multiple levels? If you failed at Level 1 Sufficiency, what was your decile ranking?

CFE remark?

Interpreting your Results and the Impact on Likelihood of Success:

The candidates who have the best chance of a successful remark are those that failed at only one of the four levels. If that FAIL was on Level 1 Sufficiency, the closer you are to 0, the closer you were to passing. A Sufficiency Rating of 1 means that you were in the top 10% of failing candidates.

Given the low success rate on remarks, I only recommend that you consider a remark if you only failed Day 1 or only failed at one single level on Day 2 and 3, AND

  • if that level was Level 1 Sufficiency, you are in Decile 1, or
  • if you failed at Level 4, you only failed in one of the Breadth competencies, not more.

The more levels that you failed at and the farther away from 0 on your sufficiency decile, the harder it will be to pass on remark because that means that more AOs will need to be bumped up on remark. That said, there are exceptions to every rule, go with your gut. Of the few candidates I know that have succeeded on remark, they say they felt that something was “off” in their failing result.

If you failed all 3 days, do not order a remark.

Historical Success Rates:

For the May 2023 CFE, 165 failing candidates requested a remark and 4 were successful. That is a success rate of 2.4%, of those that ordered a remark. Of those 4, 1 had only failed Day 1 and 3 had only failed Day 2 and 3. Nobody who failed all 3 days was successful on remark.

For the September 2022 CFE, 430 failing candidates requested a remark and 7 were successful. That is a success rate of 1.6%, of those that ordered a remark. Of those 7, 1 had only failed Day 1, and 6 had only failed Day 2 and 3. Nobody who failed all 3 days was successful on remark.

About 1/4 of failing candidates order a remark, and this has been declining in recent years. Unfortunately, the stats are not very promising.

Costs (can vary slightly across provinces):

Consider the cost to remark vs. the cost to write again. Re-writing is about 2.5x the cost to appeal, but you have a much higher chance of success. Note that appeal fees are refunded if the appeal is successful.

All 3 Days: $725 Remark vs. $1,750 to re-write

Day 1: $275 Remark vs. $825 to re-write

Day 2 & 3: $500 to Remark vs. $1,350 to re-write

Deadlines:

December 18, 2023 (Monday). While remarks are completed on an as received basis, it will usually take around 1.5 to 2 months to get your remark results back.

Next: Decide on Whether to Order a PAR

Questions?

Join the Live Q&A in the Facebook group on SATURDAY DEC 2 at 2pm PST / 5pm EST. The recording will be in the group if you missed it.

If you need help interpreting your results, feel free to send me an email with your results letter and I can give you my thoughts.