Easiest State to Get Your CPA License in 2022? [The Top 28]

easiest state to get your cpa license

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If you’re looking for the easiest state to get your CPA license, the table below lists 28 states with the easiest requirements to become a licensed CPA:

How to Save Yourself MONTHS of Time and Frustration
Keep in mind that the CPA exam is the one part of getting your CPA license that you can control how long it takes. The education and experience requirements take as long as they take, but the CPA exams can take you as little as 6 months, or as long as multiple years… depending on how effective your study process is from the beginning.
Learn how to study strategically so you can save yourself tons of time and retake fees with this free training…

StateCredits to SitAccounting Credits to SitBusiness Credits to SitExperience RequiredEthics ExamResidency Required
Alabama12024241 yearNoNo
Arizona120 (B.S.)24182,000 hoursYesNo
Arkansas120 (B.S.)30301 yearNoNo
California120 (B.S.)24241 yearYesNo
Colorado120 (B.S.)27211 year (1,800hrs)YesNo
Delaware120 (B.S.)2401 yearYesNo
District of Columbia1202431 year (2,000hrs)NoNo
Florida12030361 year (2,000hrs)NoNo
Georgia120 (B.S.)2001 year (2,000hrs)NoNo
Idaho120 (B.S.)20101 year (2,000hrs)YesNo
Iowa120 (B.S.)24241 yearYesNo
Maryland1203001 year (2,000hrs)NoNo
Massachusetts1202191 year (2,000hrs)NoNo
Missouri12024241 yearYesNo
Montana12024241 yearYesNo
New Hampshire120 (B.S.)30241 yearNoNo
New Jersey120 (B.S.)24241 year (1,750hrs)YesNo
New Mexico120 (B.S.)3001 yearYesNo
New York120 (B.S.)24211 yearNoNo
Ohio12024241 yearNoNo
Pennsylvania1202401,600 hoursNoNo
South Carolina12024241 yearYesNo
Tennessee120 (B.S.)1801 year (2,000hrs)YesNo
Utah12024241 year (2,000hrs)YesNo
Vermont1203001 yearYesNo
Virginia12024241 year (2,080hrs)YesNo
West Virginia120 (B.S.)30271 yearNoNo
Wisconsin1202401 yearYesNo

What Determines the Easiest State to Get Your CPA License?

If you’re working to become a CPA, there are a few factors that can make getting your CPA license in a certain state “easier” or “harder”.

How Many Accounting Credits and Business Credits Are Required?

The first factor is the number of accounting and business credit hours required to take the exam. If you can take the CPA exams after getting your bachelor’s or before hitting the 150 credit hours, then you can get a head start on passing the CPA exam while still working towards the 150-hour requirement.

What Are the CPA Experience Requirements?

The second factor is whether or not you need to have a certain number of years of experience before you can apply for the exam. Most states require roughly one year of experience, but some states require two years of experience. If your state requires two years of experience to get your CPA license, then it will obviously take you an entire year longer than someone in a state that only requires one year of experience.

Do You Need to Be a State Resident?

The third factor is whether or not you need to be a resident of that state. If you are required to be a resident of the state, then it’s not even an option to get your CPA license if you’re not a state resident. This makes any state that has a residency requirement to be considered a “hard” state to get your CPA license.

Does Your State Require You Pass an Ethics Exam?

Another factor is whether your state requires an ethics exam as part of getting your CPA license. That being said, the ethics exams are nothing close to the level of difficulty of the CPA exams. So a state that requires you pass an ethics exam to get your CPA license shouldn’t intimidate you.

Not all states require the same amount of education or experience before they’ll let you take the CPA exams and get your CPA license. Some states have fairly strict requirements, while others will allow you to sit for the exam after just finishing an undergraduate degree program. You can’t just assume that all states are the same — each state has its own policies and procedures regarding who can take its examinations and when those individuals can take them. Your best bet is always to get in contact with the state board of accounting in your state to get the most accurate requirements.

The Universal CPA License Requirements

There are a few CPA license requirements that are the same no matter what state you’re applying in.

These would be the 150 credit hour requirement and then passing the Uniform CPA examination. The CPA exam is “uniform” and is exactly the same no matter what state you’re taking the exams in. The specific number of accounting and business classes required will vary by state, but

Should You Get Your CPA License in a Different State?

There might be some specific situations when it can make sense to get your CPA license in another state that has “easier” requirements, but then you will usually still need to transfer your license to your state, which will mean eventually fulfilling your state’s specific requirements.

So in general, the overall “easiest” path with the least amount of hassle is to just get your CPA license in the state where you’ll be working and practicing as a CPA.

How to Save Yourself MONTHS of Time and Frustration
Keep in mind that the CPA exam is the one part of getting your CPA license that you can control how long it takes. The education and experience requirements take as long as they take, but the CPA exams can take you as little as 6 months, or as long as multiple years… depending on how effective your study process is from the beginning.
Learn how to study strategically so you can save yourself tons of time and retake fees with this free training…

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