Puerto Rico CPA Exam Requirements 2022: Detailed Breakdown

Puerto Rico CPA Exam Requirements

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Puerto Rico CPA Exam Requirements

If you want to become a CPA in Puerto Rico, we’ve summarized the Puerto Rico CPA exam requirements. Read below to know the exact steps and needs to be a licensed CPA in the Island of Enchantment.

Summary of Puerto Rico CPA Requirements

Credit hours to sit for the CPA exam150
Bachelor’s required to sit for the CPA examYes
Credit hours in accounting subjects to sit for the CPA exam32
Credit hours in business subjects to sit for the CPA exam32
Total credit hours to receive a CPA license150
Work experience required to receive a CPA license1 year
Ethics exam required to get a CPA licenseYes
Has a minimum of 2.0 GPAYes
Puerto Rico residentYes
Must be a U.S citizenYes
Present a certificate of membership with the local Puerto Rico CPA SocietyYes
Present a Certificate of Good Conduct from the Police DepartmentYes
Provide a Certificate of Compliance with ASUMEYes

General Requirements

  • Hold a Puerto Rico residency or have a place of business in Puerto Rico.
  • Must be a U.S. citizen.
  • If you are not a U.S. citizen, you must submit statements of intention to become a citizen of the U. S with your application.
  • At least 21 years old at the time of certification.
  • An applicant is required to provide a Certificate of Compliance with ASUME.
  • An applicant must present a certificate of membership with the local Puerto Rico CPA Society.
  • Applicant must present a Certificate of Good Conduct from the Police Department indicating that he/she has not been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor that implies moral turpitude.

Like any other state, Puerto Rico has its CPA exam requirements to be met for someone to sit in the CPA exam. You may check these requirements from the National Association of State Board of Accountancy (NASBA) or visit the Puerto Rico Board of Accountancy:

Puerto Rico State Board of Public Accountancy
Address: Box 9023271
Old San Juan Station
San Juan, PR 00902-3271
Phone: (615) 564-2128
Fax: (615) 564-2128
Email: ecolon@nasba.org
Web: www.estado.pr.gov

Education requirements to Sit for the Puerto CPA exam

If your education was completed on or before January 1, 2000, you must meet the following:
  • Earned a bachelor’s degree or higher
  • Completed 150 semester hours (225 quarters) of general college-level education
  • Completed 32 semesters (48 quarter) hours in accounting courses
  • Completed 32 semesters (48 quarter) hours in accounting and general business courses such as business law, information systems, economics, and finance
  • Has a minimum of 2.0 GPA

Suppose you are in your final semester of completing your bachelor’s degree and 150 semester hours of general education. In that case, you can qualify for the CPA exam provided that you have completed 32 semesters (48 quarter) hours in accounting with a minimum of 3.0 GPA prior to submitting your application.

Unless you have completed the entire education requirement, you will not be eligible to get your CPA license in Puerto Rico.

If your education is still in progress when you submit your CPA exam application, you are required to submit an official transcript and the Certificate of Enrollment. Upon completing your education, you must submit an additional transcript showing all courses and degree/s as complete.

If your education was completed on or before December 31, 1999, you might qualify by one following education requirements:
  1. Earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a major in accounting from a college or university recognized by the Puerto Rico board; OR
  2. Earned a bachelor’s degree from college or university recognized by the Puerto Rico board and completed at least 58 semester (87 quarter) hours in general business courses, of which 32 semester (48 quarter) hours must be in accounting subjects; OR
  3. Have a bachelor’s degree from a college or university recognized by the Puerto Rico board. In the absence of having completed the required number of credit hours in general business courses.

All educational requirements must be completed at the time of application. All educational transcripts and international evaluations are required to be submitted to CPA Examination Services directly from the academic institutions.

Experience Requirements

You need to directly submit your official baccalaureate degree transcripts to CPA Examination Services if you are applying based on experience. This must be submitted at the time of application.

In addition, you must submit a written request with experience information directly to the Puerto Rico State Board of Accountancy for review and approval. You may submit the request to:

Junta de Contabilidad
P.O. Box 9023271
San Juan, PR 00902-3271

Transcripts

There are two different types of transcripts that need to be submitted if you will apply to sit for the Puerto Rico CPA exam based on education or experience.

If you are applying based on experience:

  • Submit to CPA Examination Services the official baccalaureate degree transcripts. The transcript must be received directly from the academic institution to CPA Exam Services.
  • Submit a written request with experience details directly to the Puerto Rico State Board of Accountancy for review and approval: Junta de Contabilidad P.O. Box 9023271, San Juan, PR 00902-3271.
  • Photocopies will be accepted.
  • You may only apply for this option if you earned your baccalaureate degree prior to December 31, 1999.

If you have completed your education requirements at the time of application:

  • Submit an official transcript from each of the schools that you attended. Transfer credits are not acceptable, thus you must submit transcripts from each institution.
  • Transcripts are considered official if they have been issued by the institutions’ Registrar’s Office and have Registrar’s official seal.
  • The degree that you earned must be present on the official transcript.
  • Photocopies of transcripts are considered not official and are not acceptable.
  • Transcripts of the courses completed outside the U.S. campus must be issued by the registrar from the U. S. campus. Transcripts issued by the registrar for the campus located outside the U. S. will not be accepted.

If you have International education credentials:

  • Your credentials should be evaluated by NASBA International Evaluation Services.
  • You may obtain the form to request this service from the evaluation agency.
  • Submit a translated copy of each international transcript used for the evaluation.
  • You should require the agency to evaluate the following:
    • An equivalent summary that indicates the academic degrees in the U. S. you hold. The credential analysis should specify: the name of the country, the degree awarded, the year that the degree was awarded, and the entity that awarded the degree.
    • A course-by-course listing and a course credit analysis that includes: total credits earned toward the degree as stated on the transcripts that were submitted, total earned accounting and business courses credits.
  • Coursework completed as part of a Chartered Accountant or similar program is considered professional training and is, therefore, not accepted toward the education requirements for the U.S. Uniform CPA Exam.
  • Commercial review courses and professional training are not acceptable as part of the requirements.
  • CPA review courses and online courses maybe accepted if they are taken at a regionally accredited institution and these courses should appear on the transcript.

CPA Exam Fees

How much will it cost to take the Puerto Rico CPA exam? First-time applicants are required to pay both an application fee and an examination fee upon submission of the first time-application. Re-exam candidates are required to pay both a registration fee and an examination fee at the time of registration.

Examination Application$210.00
Registration$130.00
Auditing and Attestation (AUD)$226.15
Business Environment and Concepts (BEC)$226.15
Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR)$226.15
Regulation (REG)$226.15

Puerto Rico CPA Exam Application Process

Complete and submit all the transcripts from each school listed on your application. If applicable, submit the Testing Accommodations Request Form (for applicants with disabilities) to CPAES.

Pay the necessary exam fees and provide all the needed requirements. Allow two to four weeks from your file completion date for your application to be processed.

If you have any questions, contact the Puerto Rico Coordinator at cpaes-pr@nasba.org.

Puerto Rico’s Uniform CPA Exam

The Uniform CPA exam is composed of four different sections and you must pass all sections with a score of 75% or higher. Candidates must pass all four sections within 18 months.

  • Auditing and Attestation (AUD).
    • This exam section covers the basics of financial and attest services, such as audits, reviews, compilations, and preparing agreements. This portion covers financial reporting frameworks from industry experts. Candidates are asked to compare statements that reflect different reporting standards.
  • Business Environment and Concepts (BEC).
    • This exam section covers general business concepts, such as economics, business communications, and related business courses. This portion covers general business concepts, including international business. You’ll need to use excellent writing skills to complete this part of the exam.
  • Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR).
    • This exam section covers financial accounting topics for all business entities, including the government and nonprofits. Candidates are asked to compare statements that reflect different reporting standards.
  • Regulation (REG).
    • This exam section covers federal taxation, tax services, professional ethics, and business law for individuals and business entities. This ethics portion of the CPA exam explores your professional and legal responsibilities.

Puerto Rico CPA License Requirements

Upon passing the CPA exam, you are ready to apply for your CPA license in Puerto Rico. To apply for the CPA license you must complete the following:

  1. Pass all four sections in the CPA exam with a score of 75% or higher.
  2. Fill out and submit all required license application documents.
  3. Pay the CPA license application fee.
  4. You need to have one year of accounting work experience with the supervision of a licensed Certified Public Accountant.

Continuing Professional Education (CPE) Fees

The list of CPE fees below is both for individual and firm licenses:

  • Initial $207
  • Transfer of Grades $250
  • Reciprocal $250
  • Firm $290
  • Individual Renewal $225
  • Firm Renewal $225

Effective July 1, 2013, this is the Experience Requirement to get your license:

  • One year of full-time experience in the areas of public accounting, industry or private practice, or academia
  • Should be a minimum of 1,820 qualifying hours.
  • Must be verified by a CPA in good standing.
  • Part-time experience is acceptable with a minimum of three years.

Puerto Rico CPA Exam F.A.Qs

Here are some commonly asked questions regarding Puerto Rico’s CPA Exam and CPA License requirements.

Do CPA Scores Expire in Puerto Rico?

Once a CPA candidate passes their first CPA exam section, they then have 18 months to pass the remaining three CPA exam sections to complete the Uniform CPA Examination. Once a CPA candidate has passed the Uniform CPA Examination, their scores never expire in Puerto Rico.

How Long Does It Take To Get a CPA License in Puerto Rico?

Puerto Rico requires that you must meet the 150 semester hours before applying to sit for the CPA exam. This is roughly five years of education, then one year to take and pass the exam, and then one year to meet the experience requirement. That makes a total of 6 – 7 years to get your CPA license.

What Are Requirements to Sit for the CPA Exam in Puerto Rico?

To sit for the CPA exam in Puerto Rico, you must be at least 21 years old, be a resident of Puerto Rico or have a place of business in Puerto Rico, and meet the education requirements which is 150 semester hours with a 2.0 minimum GPA, you ask the Puerto Rico Police Department to submit a certificate of good conduct (called a Certificado Negativo de Antecedentes Penales”) to CPA Examination Services (CPAES) on your behalf, as well as paying the applicable fees.

How Do I Register to Take the Exam in Puerto Rico?

To apply for the CPA Examination online, you need to create an account in CPA Central. You may register online via credit card, then schedule your exam in Prometric.

How Many Accounting Credits Do You Need to Sit For The CPA License in Puerto Rico?

As part of the 150-semester-hour requirement, you will need to earn 38 semester hours in accounting, and minimum of 32 semester hours in accounting and general business. Accounting classes that meet the requirement would be finance, economics, business law and information systems.

Does Puerto Rico Require an Ethics Exam for the CPA?

Puerto Rico does not require an ethics exam in order to be able to apply for a CPA license.

How Much is the CPA Exam in Puerto Rico?

For first-time applicants, you will need to pay both an application fee and an examination fee. The application fee cost $210 and the examination fee is $226.15 per section.
For re-examination candidates, you are required to pay both a registration fee and an examination fee. The registration fee is $130 and the examination fee is $226.15 per section.

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