How does it work? Have you tried it.
I am currently a full-time member. However, I am finding myself in a trap of paying these fees for years now while I am still a candidate.
I rushed into the membership some time ago out of my own insecurity. Having gained that FO work experience has been like a miracle I thought I would never achieve. At, naturally, as that FO job has come under pressure from corporate downsizing, I panicked. I am very happy I have become the member of CFAI yet I have been paying throughout all times in my life, whether I have a job or not, whether I am in a term or permanent position, and - honestly - now, being in a difficult job situation again, I keep wondering if it is not wiser to downsize a little.
Problem is: if I had to collect my referees again, it would be challenging as these are too senior both in age and positions, some moved countries and - while I could compensate the older coworkers with newer colleagues - the situation is pretty much the same. Furthermore, as I have not been negotiating professional references for the CFAI with my employers as back in the earlier days, I can not guarantee the cooperation.