"Easiest" state to get CPA license in?

What's the state that has the lowest bar in requirements when it comes to getting a CPA license? I live in Washington (WA), but I do not meet the strigent education requirements (24 semester hours of
accounting + 24 semester hours of business administration). I have 0 hours in one and 4-5 in the other. I have no accounting work experience, and very little general work experience because I'm a recent college graduate.
Also, does it matter what state you get a license in? I don't intend to practice.
I have already looked at http://www.aicpa.org/download/states/require_pract.pdf , but it didn't particularly help. Looked like North Dakota might be easy, but ND's website contradicted that information.
Thanks.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
All states require a bachelors in Accounting, not must a business degree with an accounting major. This adds up to about 24 semester hours of accounting. You then have to take the test and get experience to become a CPA. There are no shortcuts that I know of.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I may have been over generalizing. I think WAshington actually requires a degree in accounting, but I could be wrong. With that number of accounting credits, though, I can't imagine not qualifying for a degree in accounting.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

Simple, the candidate could take them post baccalaureate as 48 hours of extension classes.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Then why are you bothering to get a CPA license? You'll have to obtain CPE on a continuous basis to keep that license, as well as actually ~pay~ licensing fees on a regular basis.
--
Paul A. Thomas, CPA
Athens, Georgia
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:
...

Yes on the license fee.
Not necessarily on the CPE. If the state allows "inactive" and/or "retired" status, the CPE requirement is removed.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I would not count on that. I have never met anyone, in a position to hire, that was impressed with the license in the least.
On the other hand, I've met many who were not in a position of authority to hire that still seem to be impressed with the designation.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Why bother if you don't intend to practice? That is a lot of learning and work you have to go through to pass that exam regardless of the State. The exam is the same for all States. Just the requirements to take the exam varies among the States.
Wayne
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Not sure what you mean by "being licensed to practice in one state doesn't affect the license to practice in another", because to practice in that state, you would need to be licensed in that state. While most states allow a reciprocity with other state's licenses, going with the one with the weakest requirements might leave you with a license that won't transfer to other states.
If you need to have your CPA license to land a job, then the employer NEEDS you to be licensed in that state most likely.
While self-study isn't going to slow you down, if that's all you do, it probably isn't enough.
--
Paul A. Thomas, CPA
Athens, Georgia
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Hi David,
I understand why you would get a license without wanting to practice. I, too, don't want to practice long-term, but want to attain the license for career advancement purposes.
The bottom line is, that you will have to practice for a period of time in order to achieve the license. That is where I am in my career right now. Currently I work in a small firm, and I am studying for the exam. I've almost completed my second Master's degree (this one in Accounting) which will give me the education requirements. I can tell you that the requirements (both educational and practice) are not just there as a barrier to entry, they are absolutely necessary.
Everyday I encounter issues that I've learned about in school, but when it comes to putting it into context with what I am dealing with, it's not that simple. I NEED the help of my colleagues.
Even if you could self-study to take the exam, you would not be able to apply what you've learned from the books correctly without guidance. I am working on my first audit, and I am auditing the Accounts Payable account. This morning I was so focused on making sure that amounts were accrued in the correct period, that I didn't realize the nature of the payable I was working on was actually a prepaid expense (as opposed to a regular expense). This is a minor example where I was corrected by one of my colleagues, and that was just this morning!
Working with other CPAs is the only way to insure that when you become licensed you are MINIMALLY competent to be called a CPA. Also, the requirements help keep the standards for the profession high, which is very important, considering we deal with other people's money.
I wish there was a short-cut, as I am 40 years old and changing careers (from corporate sales) but there isn't. Every day I go to work at my small firm, I learn exactly WHY there is no simple path.
Sorry for being so long-winded, but I started this path similar with a similar idea as you, so I thought I'd chime in. Best to you.
bb
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

David,
I think you've come to the right conclusion... take a few accounting classes to see if you really like it. Like most professions, the reality doesn't always fit the image... not that the classes will give you a taste of reality, but it's the starting point. The two key classes will be your intermediate accounting classes. The intermediate classes are typically the "weeding" class... that's to say, if you can pass those classes and not get "weeded out," then you have a good change of finishing the requirements. I don't know if it is true, but I was told that there is a statistical correlation to how well you do in your intermediate classes will indicate how many times you'll need to sit for the CPA exam before you pass all parts.
Good luck, Russell Tuncap, CMA, CPA www.tuncap.com
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I also became a CPA as a mid-thirties career change. Here in Colorado at the time (and still the case), you could waive the experience requirement to sit for the exam with an additional 30 hours. There has been discussion about what effect the 150-hour requirement has on that (i.e., if you've got the 150 hours, you automatically qualify to sit for the CPA exam in Colorado).
A quarter century ago it was tough to find entry-level work, where the seniors on the job were 10 years younger than you. Fortunately, I got the highest grade on the exam in Colorado, which meant that at least one firm that had turned me down earlier was suddenly very interested in me. I lasted 9 months with them before their idea of "family man" and mine clashed. I've been my own boss since then.
--
Tom Healy, CPA
Boulder, CO
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
R wrote:

For me, the intermediate financial accounting classes, especially intermediate 2 (intermediate 1 had a mediocre professor), were not very difficult at all. Having a good professor who explained things CLEARLY helped a LOT, even though I know learning accounting is mostly something has to teach oneself eventually. It helped that I had already had finance though. In fact, having had finance was very key for intermediate two. It was simply a matter of practicing and reading the chapter material a couple of times for me. Deferred tax assets was probably the most difficult part.
I would say the most difficult class for me was the Systems class. I simply never understood what I needed to understand in systems, yet I know it was my own fault really, even though the professors weren't that great or either the system itself of teaching systems wasn't that great. Something about learning data-flow diagrams for make-believe companies and trying to make your own flowcharts of make-believe companies -- I never really was that good at it.
Of course, I guess this is what makes accounting difficult... just knowing proper accounting treatments of any given situation is not enough ...
On the subject of taking the CPA exam more than once, now of course it's computerized, so accountants have the option to take spread out passing the CPA. It's kind of nice to take things one section at a time.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    BeanSmart.com is a site by and for consumers of financial services and advice. We are not affiliated with any of the banks, financial services or software manufacturers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.

    Tax and financial advice you come across on this site is freely given by your peers and professionals on their own time and out of the kindness of their hearts. We can guarantee neither accuracy of such advice nor its applicability for your situation. Simply put, you are fully responsible for the results of using information from this site in real life situations.