Posts Tagged ‘Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation’

Renewing CPA Licenses in Florida

Monday, September 10th, 2012

The following information appeared on Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s website under Division of Certified Public Accounting.  We advise anyone interested in obtaining information on Florida’s licenses to contact the DBPR for the most current information.

Renewing a current active (Florida) CPA license consists of:

  • Evidencing completion of continuing professional education (CPE) credits (80 hours with at least 20 hours in accounting and auditing and 4 hours of a board approved ethics course)
  • Pay a $105.00 license renewal fee.

CPE courses must be complete by June 30th of the renewal year. There are two automatic extensions that can be utilized by licensees who are unable to meet their CPE requirement by June 30th. The first extension is September 15th and requires the licensee to complete an additional eight (8) hours of accounting and auditing credits. Therefore, the licensee would complete a total of 88 hours with at least 28 in accounting and auditing. The second extension is December 31st and requires the licensee to complete an additional 16 hours of accounting and auditing. Therefore, the licensee would complete a total of 96 hours with at least 36 in accounting and auditing.

Failure to meet (Florida’s) renewal requirements by December 31st of the renewal year will result in the license reverting to delinquent status effective January 1 of the following year. Delinquent status licenses will revert to Null and Void after two years unless license is reactivated or placed on Inactive status.

This ends the information obtained on Florida’s DPBR’s website.

Attorney Lars Soreide, of Soreide Law Group, PLLC, will represent CPA’s in front of the Florida Board of Accountancy (BOA) regarding any licensing issues. For more information about professional licensing law please visit our website at: www.floridaprofessionallicense.com or call to speak with an attorney at: (888) 760-6552.

Florida Contractors Licensing Issues

Thursday, June 14th, 2012

If your Florida contractors license was suspended unexpectedly and you aren’t sure why, it’s possible that the suspension is for failing to comply with the disciplinary actions taken against your license by the Construction Industry Licensing Board (CILB) or failure to comply with the terms of probation on your license. If the CILB has taken disciplinary action against your license or placed your license on a term of probation, you may have items that require your compliance in order to maintain your license in a current active status. It could also be that you may have outstanding fines or investigative costs that you owe to the Department; or you may have failed to provide proof of restitution made to a homeowner.

If you were given a period of probation, you may not have complied with the terms of that probation. You may have even been ordered to take additional continuing education hours, but haven’t provided proof that they have been completed.  All of these things must be considered. 

Attorney Lars K. Soreide, of the Soreide Law Group, PLLC, will represent you in front of the Florida Board of Contractors regarding licensing issues. To make an appointment to speak with an experienced and qualified attorney please call Soreide Law Group at: (888) 760-6552 or visit our website at: www.floridaprofessionallicense.com .

The Florida Board of Accountancy (BOA)

Thursday, June 14th, 2012

If you have any questions regarding the requirements for licensing, certification or reciprocity in the State of Florida for CPAs, contact the Florida Board of Accountancy (BOA). The Florida Board of Accountancy will also provide you with information on the May and November CPA exams. The Florida BOA is also able to verify if an individual is certified or licensed in the State of Florida.  The Florida Board of Accountancy can provide the addresses and phone numbers of Florida CPA’s and can also provide the information to out-of-state firms who are seeking temporary permits.

All questions about the Florida laws and rules for the practice of public accountancy and who sends out law and rules exam and CPE Reporting Forms may be directed to the BOA.

The Florida Board of Accountancy also provides information on how an organization can become an approved CPE (Continuing Professional Education) provider for Florida CPAs.

A valuable source of information is on FICPA’s (Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants) website.

Attorney Lars Soreide, of Soreide Law Group, PLLC, will represent CPA’s in front of the Florida Board of Accountancy (BOA) regarding any licensing issues. For more information about professional licensing law please visit our website at: www.floridaprofessionallicense.com or call to speak with an attorney at: (888) 760-6552.

Florida Licensed CPAs

Friday, June 8th, 2012

 Only Certified Public Accountants (CPA), by Florida law, can perform audits, and reviews, and give opinions on your financial statements. However, an accountant is not required to have a Florida license to prepare taxes.  Certain bookkeeping duties also do not require a Florida license.

Hiring a Florida licensed CPA to do your accounting is the best way to make sure your services are done correctly.  Florida licensed CPAs are regulated, and tested by the State of Florida and by law must be recertified every two years.

In the State of Florida, because CPAs are licensed and regulated, complaints may be filed against them. Administrative action can be taken against the license.  However, if the person is not a CPA, the Department has no jusidicition and only civil action can be taken.

Attorney Lars Soreide, of Soreide Law Group, PLLC, represents CPA’s in front of the Florida Board of Accountancy regarding any licensing issues. For a free consultation with an attorney please call: (888) 760-6552, or visit our website at : www.floridaprofessionallicense.com.

Florida Home Owners Face Risk Hiring Unlicensed Contractors

Monday, May 7th, 2012

Daniel Vasquez, a columnist from the Sun Sentinel asks in a May, 6th., 2012, article, “Would you place your air-conditioning unit or roof in the hands of a fly-by-night company to save a buck? Are there more unlicensed contractors offering bargains across Florida because of the bad economy?”

The Air Conditioning Contractors of America, are looking for the answer. For the past five months they have met with local contractors across the state to try to understand how widespread the problem of unlicensed contractor activity is, and to explore the possible solutions.

Vasquez writes that the most recent forum was held three weeks ago at The Westin in Fort Lauderdale, where three-dozen contractors showed up to gripe and strategize.

“What we heard in Fort Lauderdale is a reiteration of what we have heard from contractors throughout the state,” said Phil London, former president of the Florida chapter of the ACCA and current vice chair of the national organization, which represents more than 4,000 contractors. Based on what he heard at the forums held in South and Central Florida, “unlicensed activities seem to be increasing with the downturn of the economy and lack of enforcement funds within local building departments,” London said.

It was reported that Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation received 797 complaints related to air-conditioning companies in 2011, compared to 1,056 in 2010.

According to the Sun-Sentinel article, contractors at the Orlando and Fort Lauderdale meetings said among the issues that lead to unlicensed activity is the fact that wholesalers may sell air-conditioning equipment to unlicensed contractors, and that homeowners too often feel comfortable hiring a “handyman” for repairs and installations. This could result in risks to the homeowner. If someone whould get hurt while working on your property, you could be sued. Also, the unlicensed contracted may not have the proper insurance or capital to repair damage caused to property.

Vasquez says that  taking chances with your biggest investment is not worth the risk. It only takes homework and time to find a reputable contractor. Along with air-conditioning companies, the state requires about two-dozen industries to be registered or certified, including roofing, plumbing and swimming pool companies.

Soreide Law Group, PLLC, will represent you in front of the Florida Board of Contractors regarding licensing issues. To make an appointment to speak with an experienced and qualified attorney please call Soreide Law Group at: (888) 760-6552 or visit our website at: www.floridaprofessionallicense.com .

Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation “Stings” Unlicensed Contractors Advertising Via Internet

Thursday, February 9th, 2012

The following information was obtained from Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s website for December, 2011:

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s Division of Regulation (DBPR) conducted a sting this week that targeted unlicensed contractors performing electrical and/or construction work in the Jacksonville area. As a result of the sting, seven individuals in Duval County provided verbal and written estimates to Department investigators and will be served cease and desist notices or citations which will be forwarded to the local State Attorney’s Office for prosecution.

Investigators received advertisements from internet sites where the unlicensed individuals were offering their services that require a state license.

The Department’s Division of Regulation is the enforcement authority for the professional boards and programs that fall under Department jurisdiction. One of the Division’s goals is to bring unlicensed individuals into compliance with state law.

The Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s mission is to license efficiently and regulate fairly. The Department licenses and regulates more than one million businesses and professionals ranging from hotels and restaurants, real estate agents and veterinarians to accountants, contractors and cosmetologists.

This ends the information obtained from the DBPR’s website.

Soreide Law Group, PLLC, will represent you in front of the Florida Board of Contractors regarding licensing issues. To make an appointment to speak with an experienced and qualified attorney please call Soreide Law Group at: (888) 760-6552 or visit our website at: www.floridaprofessionallicense.com .

Florida Requirements for CPA’s License

Friday, January 27th, 2012

The following information appeared on Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s website under ‘Division of Certified Public Accountants.’

FLORIDA’S REQUIREMENTS FOR CPA LICENSURE

  • PASS ALL FOUR PARTS OF CPA EXAMINATION: with at least a 75% within 18 month rolling period.
  • ONE YEAR WORK EXPERIENCE: Must be under the supervision of a licensed CPA (This experience can be obtained prior to the application, while sitting for the exam or after all four parts of the exam has been passed. However, requirements to sit for the exam must be met before work experience commences.)
  • TOTAL REQUIRED HOURS: 150 semester or 200 quarter hours
  • TOTAL UPPER DIVISION ACCOUNTING HOURS: 36 semester or 54 quarter to include the following: Taxation, Auditing, Financial, Cost/Managerial and Accounting Info Systems.
  • TOTAL UPPER DIVISION GENERAL BUSINESS HOURS: 39 semester hours or 58 quarter hours to include the following: six (6) semester hours or eight (8) quarter hours of business law. One course can be at a lower lever (freshman or sophomore), the other course must be upper division (junior level or higher). Business Law 1 and Legal Environment of Business are often considered duplicate.

Other important information: These requirements include the requirements to sit for the CPA exam under the 120 semester or 160 quarter hour rule.

Information from Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s website ends here. This and other additional and valuable information regarding CPA’s may be found there.

Attorney Lars Soreide, of Soreide Law Group, PLLC,  represents CPA’s in front of the Florida Board of Accountancy regarding licensing issues. For more information about professional licensing law please visit: www.floridaprofessionallicense.comor call to speak with an attorney at: (888) 760-6552.

Florida Real Estate/Appraisal Boards and DUIs

Thursday, October 27th, 2011

The following question and answer appeared on the Florida Realtor’s Website:

Q: I am a real estate broker and an appraiser. I just entered a plea of nolo contendere to DUI (a misdemeanor). Is there a duty to report this misdemeanor to the Florida Real Estate Commission or the Florida Real Estate Appraisal Board?

A: Yes. As of Oct. 1, 2009, Section 455.227(1)(t), Florida Statutes, requires you to report this misdemeanor to the FREC and the FREAB within 30 days after the plea or after being found guilty. Prior to Oct. 1, 2009, real estate licensees and appraisers had a duty to report only felonies to the FREC and the FREAB.

If you feel your Florida professional license/livelihood is in jeopardy contact us.

Attorney Lars Soreide, of  Soreide Law Group, PLLC, will represent you in front of the Florida Real Estate Appraisal Board and/or the Florida Real Estate Commission regarding licensing issues. To speak to an attorney, please call: (888)760-6552 or visit our website at: ww.floridaprofessionallicense.com.

FLORIDA’S OFFICE OF FINANCIAL REGULATION SERVES THE 100TH CEASE & DESIST ORDER AS PART OF THE STATEWIDE CRACKDOWN ON UNLAWFUL MORTGAGE MODIFICATION ACTIVITIES

Friday, April 8th, 2011
In a March, 2011, article on Florida’s Office of Financial Regulation’s website that the Florida Office of Financial Regulation (OFR) Commissioner Tom Cardwell announced the 100th Cease & Desist Order was served in Florida to companies conducting unlawful loan modification services. 
  
Commissioner Tom Cardwell cautions citizens against paying any upfront fees for loan modifications, which are illegal. “If the person asks for any money upfront, simply turn and walk away,” Cardwell advised. “Consumers are desperate for help, but they should know their rights under the law before they act so they can protect themselves from becoming victims of financial fraud during these difficult economic times. Many of our citizens find themselves in difficult financial situations, which make them easy prey for these corrupt individuals who charge for services they do not complete and make promises they have no intention of keeping. Our goal is to ensure Floridians only pay for loan modification services that are a true benefit, not an unrealistic promise, to solve their financial problems.”
 
Companies providing loan modification services such as adjusting interest rates or any other services must have an active license from OFR. Any person or entity that continues to engage in loan modifications in this state without an active license is guilty of a third-degree felony punishable by a prison term of up to five years and a fine not to exceed $5,000 per offence.
 
The Florida Office of Financial Regulation offers the following tips for consumers to identify potential fraud and avoid becoming a victim:
 
• Do your research! Check the regulatory requirements the profession adheres to and confirm the person you are working with has a professional license. Also check if any complaints have been filed against the company or individual. 
• Always get your agreement in writing and specify the services to be provided.
• NEVER pay any upfront fees for loan modification services. It is illegal to charge consumers for any services until after they have been rendered.
• Immediately get help if you feel you have been victimized.

If you are a Licensed Mortgage Broker in the State of Florida,The Soreide Law Group, PLLC, will represent you regarding licensing issues. To make an appointment to speak with an experienced and qualified attorney please call Soreide Law Group at:  (888) 760-6552 or visit our website at:  www.floridaprofessionallicense.com.  

The State of Florida’s Division of Certified Public Accounting

Friday, April 8th, 2011

CPAs in Florida

On Florida’s DBPR’s website the definition of a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) is someone who has passed the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) Uniform CPA examination, met educational, and licensure requirements in the state of Florida and have been issued a license to practice public accounting.  CPAs provide accounting, auditing, tax, financial planning, and management consulting services.  Florida CPA firms must be licensed and CPAs can only practice in a licensed firm.

Please note that the items below are merely offered as examples of work that requires and does not require a license.  The list is not all inclusive.  Under certain circumstances, a CPA who holds an active license in good standing from another jurisdiction and does not have an office in Florida could practice in Florida without notification or fee under mobility provisions. You should also check with your county or city to learn whether or not a local business tax receipt or certificate of competency is required for services that do not require a state license.  If you have specific questions, please contact  Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation. 

Needs a License Does not need a License
Perform audits, reviews, and compilations Prepare a tax return for yourself or others or providing advice as to federal tax matters.
Express an opinion of financial statements that provide a level of assurance as to the reliability or fairness of the financial information. Perform basic bookkeeping or accounting functions.
Use the CPA designation  
Advertise or represent oneself as a CPA

 This very valuable information comes from the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation’s website.

Soreide Law Group, PLLC, represents CPA’s in front of the Florida Board of Accountancy regarding licensing issues. For more information about professional licensing law please visit: www.floridaprofessionallicense.com or call to speak to an attorney at:(888) 760-6552.