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Become a Virginia CPA

In order to become a licensed CPA in Virginia, an applicant must first meet the "3 E’s".

(1) Education

Pursuant to § 54.1-4409.2, Code of Virginia, to be considered for a Virginia CPA License, an individual seeking licensure must provide documentation from one or more accredited institutions or from the National College:

  • at least 150 semester hours of education,
  • a baccalaureate or higher degree, and
  • an accounting concentration or equivalent, in accordance with Board Regulation 18VAC5-22-70.

The Virginia Board of Accountancy (VBOA) encourages applicants to incorporate at least some graduate-level study of accounting in meeting the 150 semester hour requirement.  See the recommendation from the VBOA. 

(2) Exam

Information on the CPA Exam, to include background information, education requirements, exam fees and taking the CPA Exam, can be found under the CPA Exam tab.

To be eligible to take the CPA Exam in Virginia an individual must provide documentation from one or more accredited institutions or from the National College the educational requirements listed above.

(3) Experience

Pursuant to Board Regulation 18VAC5-22-100:

Prior to applying for a license, an individual must have been employed in academia, a firm, government, or industry in any capacity involving the substantial use of accounting, financial, tax, or other skills that are relevant, as determined by the VBOA, to providing services to the public using the CPA title or to an employer using the CPA title for a period that is the full-time equivalent of one year. Whether other skills are relevant shall be determined by the VBOA on a case-by-case basis. Self-employment does not meet the definition of experience in accordance with § 54.1-4400, Code of Virginia.

During the licensure application process, applicants will be required to complete an Experience Verification Form