CPA Requirements in Florida

Soreide Law Group, conveniently located in South Florida, represents all Florida licensed CPA’s statewide in front of the Florida Board of Accountancy (BOA) and the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) regarding licensing issues.

The following information should always be verified and is not meant as legal advice but as a representation of some of the requirements in order to acquire a CPA in Florida.  If certain requirements are not met, then a fine or suspension may be imposed until you are current on all that is required.

We recommend checking with the Florida board for all requirements involved in taking the CPA Exam and earning your CPA license in Florida.  Again, we stress that you contact the Florida Board of Accountancy for the most up-to-date information.

Before taking the CPA Exam in Florida, you must meet a set of educational requirements. You must complete 120 semester credit hours, or 180 quarter hours. A Bachelor’s degree is not required to sit for the exam. The following information comes in part from Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation.

The Florida education requirements must be met as follows:

  • 30 semester hours (45 quarter hours) in upper-level accounting courses including:
    • Auditing
    • Cost accounting
    • 3 semester hours (4 quarter hours) of financial accounting
    • 3 semester hours (4 quarter hours) of taxation based on US accounting standards
    • Note: All accounting courses must be at the upper-division level. 
  • 36 semester hours (54 quarter hours) of general business courses to include:
    • 3 semester hours (4 quarter hours) of business law based on US law
    • Note: one microeconomics, one macroeconomics, one statistics, one business law, and one introduction to computers course may be at the lower-division level.

Before applying for licensure in Florida, all candidates must pay a $50 nonrefundable fee and complete one year of work experience verified by a licensed CPA. This experience must meet the following criteria:

  • Experience must start after completion of 120 semester hours from an accredited college or university with a concentration in accounting and business courses.
  • Work experience shall include any type of service or advice involving the use of accounting, attestation, compilation, management advisory, financial advisory, tax, or consulting skills, all of which must be verified by a certified public accountant who is licensed by a state or territory of the United States. This experience is acceptable if it was gained through employment in government, industry, academia, or public practice and constituted a substantial part of the applicant’s duties.
  • Experience must average at least 20 hours a week over no more than 104 weeks, or average no more than 40 hours a week over no more than 52 weeks.
  • A certified public accountant shall certify that the applicant rendered such services as are customarily performed by full-time, regularly employed staff employees for a minimum of 2,000 hours gained over a period of not less than 52 or more than 104 weeks.
  • The sequence of the experience is considered immaterial, that is, whether the experience was secured before or after taking the examination, or partly before the examination and partly after the examination, provided the two periods combined equal at least one year.

Florida CPA CPE requirements are intended to assist CPAs in maintaining their professional knowledge and competence. There are four categories into which all acceptable subject matter for CPE credit is classified: accounting and auditing, technical business, behavioral and ethics. Florida CPAs must complete a total of 80 CPE hours and include at least eight hours in accounting and auditing and four hours in Board-approved ethics every two years. 

Remember, your license is your livelihood.

For more information about professional licensing law please call Soreide Law Group for a no-cost consultation with an attorney at: (888) 760-6552.