Illinois CPA Exam & License Requirements

  •  Updated:Nov. 11, 2019
  • Bryce Welker, CPA
  • State CPA Requirements
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Illinois CPA Exam & License Requirements

Illinois CPA license requirements are less strict than most, however, they do require 150 semester hours before you can sit for the CPA exam.  Canadians often take the exam here because the state does not require a Social Security Number and is open to applicants via IQEX.

CPA Exam Requirements

To be eligible to sit for the CPA exam students must first fulfill these qualifications and requirements:

  1. Minimum age: None
  2. U.S. Residency NOT required
  3. State Residency NOT Required

Illinois Education Requirements

150 credit hours plus ONE of the following:

(1) Graduate Degree in Accounting from school accredited by AACSB orACBSP

(2) Graduate Degree in Business from accredited school

  • Accounting courses: 24 credit hours at undergrad level or 15 hours at graduate level.  Must include the following subjects: financial accounting, auditing, taxation, managerial accounting

(3) Bachelor Degree in Business

  • Accounting courses: 24 credit hours at undergrad or graduate level, including financial accounting, auditing, taxation, managerial accounting
  • Business courses: 24 credit hours (undergrad or grad level)

(4) Bachelor Degree (general)

  • Accounting courses: 24 credit hours at undergrad or graduate level, with at least ONE course in: financial accounting, auditing, taxation, managerial accounting
  • Business courses: 24 credit hours (undergrad or grad level)

IL CPA License Requirements

Education
  • Same as above
Work Experience
  • 1 year of public accounting experience verified by an active licensed CPA
  • Must accumulate experience AFTER passing the CPA exam
Ethics Exam

Illinois CPA Exam Fees

The cost to take all four sections of the CPA exam in Illinois is $743 plus the initial $120 application fee.  The re-examination application fees vary depending on the number of sections you are retaking.

Auditing and Attestation (AUD)$195.35
Business Environment and Concepts (BEC)$176.25
Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR)$195.35
Regulation (REG)$176.25
Application Fee:$120

*Special Fees: Credential evaluation fee for first-time candidates varies between $175-$250

**Important Note: You should not apply and pay for exam sections that will not be taken within six months because your Notice to Schedule (NTS) in Illinois expires 6 months after issuance.

Additional CPA License Requirements

  1. Pass all 4 sections of the CPA exam with a score of 75% or higher
  2. Complete verified accounting work experience
  3. Pass the Ethics exam
  4. Fill out and submit all required CPA license application paperwork
  5. Pay the CPA license application fee

100 Trade Centre Drive – Suite 403
Champaign, IL 61820-7123Email: [email protected]
Phone: 217-531-0950
Fax: 217-531-0960

What’s Next?

Now that you have started the CPA exam application process, your next step is to find a CPA review course that fits your budget, learning style and schedule.

It can take several weeks for your application to be processed so don’t waste that valuable time waiting to hear back from your state board.  If you start studying now you will get a nice jump start on the material and will be better prepared to pass your first CPA exam!

5 Comments
  • Shanna
    Posted at 30 January, 2018 13:17 PM Reply

    Hi! I just found out today I am not eligible in Illinois to test because I only have 4 Business Ethics credits and they require 6. I have taken one of the four exams in Indiana. Since I know I can test there if I registered in Indiana can I transfer the CPA License to Illinois? I am having a hard time finding a straight forward answer online. Thanks!

    • Bryce Welker, CPA
      Posted at 2 February, 2018 13:14 PM Reply

      Hi Shanna, According to the AICPA mobility site it appears that you would be able to transfer your license from Indiana to Illinois, https://cpamobility.org/. Definitely double check with the State Board of Accountancy for both states to make sure there are no hangups with your specific situation. Cheers, Bryce

    • Guy
      Posted at 12 January, 2018 00:10 AM Reply

      [* Shield plugin marked this comment as "trash". Reason: Failed GASP Bot Filter Test (comment token failure) *] The AICPA ethics exam link doesn't work.

      • Bryce Welker, CPA
        Posted at 16 January, 2018 21:49 PM Reply

        Just updated the ethics exam link, thanks for letting me know! Cheers, Bryce

      • PeteAcpa
        Posted at 24 April, 2014 19:44 PM Reply

        I don't think that Illinois requires you to work under the supervision of an active CPA like you state here. Looking on the IDFPR website and on the licensure application on this page it doesn't specify anything about working for a CPA. Can anyone shed any light on this?

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