How to Become a CPA in Illinois? (2022 Requirement Updated)

The Illinois Board of Examiners handles the licensure process for all aspiring CPAs in the state. The board also defines the steps that aspiring CPAs must go through to get their CPA license in Illinois.

Any prospective CPAs must follow the board’s laid-out process to get their Illinois CPA license. The overall process is similar to other states with changes in the requirements.

How to Become a CPA in Illinois?

The process of becoming a CPA in Illinois is similar to other states. Aspiring CPAs must first start with formal education that meets the Illinois Board of Examiners’ requirements.

Next, they must sit for their Illinois Uniform CPA Exam. Lastly, they must obtain practical work experience. During this process, they must also satisfy the requirements set by the Illinois Board of Examiners.

Educational Requirements

Aspiring CPAs in Illinois must obtain formal education that is crucial to understand the basics of their trade. This education can help them pass their Illinois Uniform CPA Exam and meet its experience requirements.

There are some requirements for education that the Illinois Board of Examiners has set that applicants must satisfy, which are as below.

  • Aspiring CPAs must enrol in an in-state university or college that offers programs in accounting. The board requires them to complete a bachelor’s degree and at least 150 semester hours of college credit.
  • Those who have already enrolled in a college or university or graduated must ensure the board will accept their credits.
  • Aspiring CPAs must also take the right classes in one of the three options set by the Illinois Board of Examiners. These options and classes are as follows.
    • They must get a graduate degree from an accredited program in accounting.
    • They must get a graduate degree in business or accounting from an accredited program. This program must include the following.
      • 30 semester hours of undergraduate level (or equivalent in graduate-level) courses in accounting. It must include the following.
        • Auditing
        • Business communication
        • Business ethics
        • Business law
        • Business statistics
        • Economics
        • Finance
        • Financial accounting
        • Information systems
        • Internship/life experience
        • Management
        • Management accounting
        • Marketing
        • Quantitative methods
        • Taxation
    • They must get a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution. It must include the following,
      • 30 semester hours of undergraduate-level (or graduate level) accounting courses, including the following.
        • Auditing
        • Financial accounting
        • Management accounting
        • Taxation
        • Two semester hours in research and analysis in accounting
        • At most, three semester hours may come from internships and accounting life experience credits
      • 24 semester hours in undergraduate-level (or graduate-level) courses in business that excludes accounting. These must consist of subjects from the following.
        • Business communication
        • Business ethics
        • Business law
        • Business statistics
        • Economics
        • Finance
        • Information systems
        • Internship/life experience
        • Management
        • Marketing
        • Quantitative methods
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Uniform CPA Exam

The next step for aspiring CPAs is to sit for their Illinois Uniform CPA Exam. This exam allows the board and other regulatory bodies to check a candidate’s accounting and related knowledge.

Similarly, aspiring CPAs must go through the following process to sit for the exam.

  • Aspiring CPAs must register with the Illinois Board of Examiners online. They must also submit a credential evaluation application in one of the following areas, according to their type.
    • Domestic Evaluation
    • Foreign Evaluation
    • International Qualifications Exam
    • Pre-Evaluation
    • Total Transfer of Credit
  • They must also pay a fee for the application that amounts to $200. Candidates with foreign credits don’t have to pay a fee.
  • Applicants must also submit their final transcript demonstrating the completion of their educational requirements to the board.
  • They must complete their Initial Examination Request form through the board’s online portal. The website will also require a fee for each of the exam sections that candidates take.
  • Aspiring CPAs must then schedule their exam after receiving their Notification to Schedule.
  • The board also requires applicants to take and pass AICPA’s professional ethics course with at least a 90% score before the exam process.

Experience Requirements

Aspiring CPAs must also meet the experience requirements of the Illinois Board of Examiners. The board requires them to obtain one year of experience in a position within one of the following.

  • Academia
  • Government
  • Industry
  • Public Practice

This experience must be supervised and be in a position where they provide services or advice in one or a combination of the following.

  • Accounting
  • Attestation
  • Financial advisory
  • Management advisory
  • Taxation
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Lastly, aspiring CPAs must have their supervising CPA verify their experience. They can do so through the Verification of Experience/Employment form.

Summary

Given below is a summary of how to become a CPA in Illinois.

  • Aspiring CPAs must obtain formal education that meets the Illinois Board of Examiners’ requirements.
  • They must then apply and sit for their Illinois Uniform CPA Exam.
  • They must fulfil the experience requirements of the Illinois Board of Examiners.
  • Lastly, they must apply for their Illinois CPA license.

References

  1. “Illinois Board of Examiners” – https://www.ilboe.org
  2. “Required Documents” – https://www.ilboe.org/requirements/required-documents/
  3. “Uniform CPA Exam” – https://www.ilboe.org/exam/uniform-cpa-exam/
  4. “Illinois | NASBA” – https://nasba.org/exams/cpaexam/illinois/