In this article, you will find a step-by-step guide that will help you to get your CPA license in Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania State Board of Accountancy issues the CPA licenses.
Step 1. Complete Your Education
a. Find and contact an institution that offers accounting programs and get information about it. The education requirement is to have at least a bachelor’s degree and 150 hours of credit. Including 24 semester hours of accounting.
b. Make sure that your program is approved by the Pennsylvania State Board of Accountancy. All the programs in Pennsylvania need to have accreditation from an agency that is approved by the U.S. Department of Education. You can find all the accredited programs in this list.
The Pennsylvania State Board of Accountancy needs to check all the programs that are not approved, to make sure that they meet the state’s standards and you are able to pass the exam.
c. In order to get the CPA license you need to, you have to satisfy the following education standard that is set by Pennsylvania’s State Board of Accountancy:
- Have at least a bachelor’s degree and 150 education hours, including 24 semester hours of accounting.
- If you take the approved online courses and CLEP, the credits will be counted.
- Finances class connected with “money” or “banking” is not considered to be an accounting program. And the board doesn’t accept the credits.
Step 2. Pass The Uniform CPA Exam
You can pass the exam once you have 120 education hours, 24 hours of accounting, and a bachelor’s degree. But before applying for the license you need to complete the education hours.
- Apply for the exam directly via the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy’s (NASBA) CPA Examination Services (CPAES). You can submit the application online or print it from here.
- Provide all the necessary documents with your application.
- Request your education institution to send your transcript directly to the CPAES at CPA Examination Services. If your program has electronic transcripts, you can email [email protected]
- After you submit the application in 4 weeks, you will get a Notice to Schedule (NTS). It is valid for 6 months or for one exam.
- You can make an appointment for an exam on Prometric’s website.
- On exam day, be on schedule and prepared to take the test at your exam place.
- Your Uniform CPA Exam result note will be mailed to you after they will be tabulated.
Step 3. Get The Necessary Experience.
Once you pass the Uniform CPA Exam, the next step is to complete Pennsylvania’s practical work experience to get your Pennsylvania CPA license.
- Depending on your degree choose the right experience and complete it. You must achieve one year of practice, which may be in private business or federal, state, or local administration, according to the Pennsylvania State Board of Accountancy. You have 5 years from the moment of applying for the Pennsylvania CPA Certificate to complete this experience. Also, you need to get experience under the supervision of a licensed CPA.
4. Get Your Pennsylvania CPA License.
So, if you’ve passed the exam and have got the work experience, then it is time to get your license to work as a CPA. Double-check to make sure that you have done everything and are completely ready. Here is the list of Pennsylvania CPA license requirements.
- Have a bachelor’s degree, 150 education hours, including 24 semester hours in accounting.
- Pass the Uniform CPA Examination.
- Complete the required work experience for a year.
- Fill in the Verification of Experience Form, ask your supervisor to complete and send it to the Pennsylvania State Board of Accountancy by mail.
Submit the Pennsylvania Certification Application.
In order to be able to submit the application, you need to meet all the requirements listed above. Go to the Pennsylvania State Board of Accountancy website and download the Certified Public Accountant Certification Application. In Pennsylvania, the CPA licensing process is called a “certification”. So, if you complete the certification properly you will get your license.
Interstate Reciprocal License
If you have a license from another state but want to work as a CPA in Pennsylvania you need to do some steps:
- Complete the State Board of Accountancy’s Domestic Reciprocity Application.
- Pay the application fee.
- Provide a copy of your CPA certificate.
- Send your Uniform CPA Exam score to the Pennsylvania State Board of Accountancy.
- You get your license less than five years ago, you also need to:
- Provide a Verification of Experience Form.
- Send the official transcript to the Pennsylvania State Board of Accountancy.
- Prove for the continuing professional education (CPE) for 80 hours that you complete every 2 years while holding the license.
Step 5. Stay Current Through Continuing Professional Education in Pennsylvania
There are some steps that you need to do every 2 years in order to maintain your CPA license.
- Complete the continuing professional education (CPE) for 80 hours and at least 20 credits every year.
- You need to save all the records of the CPE that you took in 5 years after completing the course.
How do you look up if someone is a CPA?
In order to know if someone has a CPA license or not, you need to contact the State Board of Accountancy. Additionally, you can utilize the NASBA CPA Verify tool.
How do I check my license status in PA?
To check the status, visit the Pennsylvania State Board of Accountancy official website.