Louisiana CPA Exam & License Requirements

Updated: January 6, 2024 You’re our #1 priority.
100% of the time.

We believe everybody should be able to make online purchases with confidence. And while our website doesn’t feature every test prep company or review course in the universe, we’re proud that the advice we offer and the information we provide is accurate, truthful, objective - and entirely free.

So how do we actually make money? It’s simple, our partners compensate us. While this may influence which products we review and write about, and where they show up on the site, it absolutely does not influence our recommendations or guidance, which are formed by hundreds of hours of research and analysis. Check out our partners here.

What’s the bottom line? We’re on your team and are passionate about helping you achieve your career goals, even if it means we don’t make a dime.

In Louisiana, the path to becoming a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) currently adheres to the long-standing requirement of 150 semester hours of education. Despite calls for reform led by experts like Dr. Sharon Lassar, who argue for more flexible pathways to licensure, Louisiana maintains this traditional model. Lassar’s advocacy, supported by research, suggests that the 150-hour rule may reduce the number of CPA candidates without significantly improving quality and presents it more as a time barrier than a measure of competence. 

The proposed shift to a “bachelor’s degree plus two years’ experience” model aims to address the talent shortage and adapt to the rapidly evolving business world. However, changing the longstanding rule faces challenges due to the need for legislative updates across multiple jurisdictions and concerns about impacting cross-state practice rights.

For now, aspiring CPAs in Louisiana must meet these established requirements, including the 150 credit hours and a year of work experience, while staying informed about potential changes in the licensure process that may arise from ongoing debates within the accounting profession. This can be confusing. As one CPA candidate on Reddit explained:

“I’m also from Louisiana. I have 150 credit hours, but the additional 30 hours of courses are in music for me. I am able to sit for the exam (I took one and failed), but not sure about licensure, to be honest.”

In this article, our experts will explain each Louisiana CPA licensure requirement in detail so that you won’t have to question your licensure process. 

Louisiana CPA Licensure 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 Required

Education Requirements

  1. Bachelor’s degree or higher
  2. 150 semester units from an accredited university or educational institution
  3. Accounting Courses: 24 semester units in undergrad level, or 21 in graduate level. Please see Louisiana Education Requirements for more details
  4. Business Courses: 24-semester units, including 3 credit hours of commercial law

*Note: Click on the Pre-evaluation Services Form if interested

Work Experience

  • 1 year (2,000 hours) of experience under the supervision of a licensed US CPA. 
  • Part-time experience can be counted
  • Experience must be gained within 4 years preceding the date of the license application

Ethics Exam

  • No. Louisiana, unlike many other states, candidates can become a CPA without completing an ethics exam as part of the initial licensing process. However, as part of their Continuing Professional Education (CPE) obligations, Louisiana CPAs are required to complete a professional ethics course as specified by the state board.

Steps to Get a CPA License in Louisiana

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

Louisiana CPA Exam Fees

The cost to take all four sections of the CPA exam in Louisiana is $1,379.20 ($344.80 per section) plus the initial $90 education evaluation application fee. The re-examination registration fee varies depending on the number of sections you are signing up for. 

**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 Louisiana expires 6 months after issuance.

CPA Exam Updates in Louisiana

The CPA profession is undergoing a significant transformation in Louisiana, as well as nationwide, with the introduction of the CPA Evolution Initiative. This initiative is a response to the rapidly changing landscape of the accounting profession, where new skill sets and competencies, especially in emerging technologies, are becoming increasingly important.

One of the key aspects of this initiative is the modification of the Uniform CPA Examination, which will be significantly updated starting January 2024. These changes are designed to ensure that the exam remains relevant and continues to assess the core competencies required in the modern accounting landscape. The Society of Louisiana Certified Public Accountants (LCPA) provides detailed insights into the model curriculum and the expected changes.

For CPA candidates in Louisiana, these updates mean that they will need to be prepared for a more diverse range of topics and skills. The new exam structure will likely emphasize understanding and applying technology in accounting practices, alongside the traditional focus areas.

Expert Tips to Become a CPA in Louisiana

Networking is an often underestimated tool in your journey to becoming a CPA in Louisiana. I recommend getting involved with local chapters of professional organizations like the Society of Louisiana CPAs as early as possible. These platforms are not just for after you’ve earned your license; they’re invaluable for mentorship, advice, and even study groups during your exam preparation. Remember, the CPA journey is rigorous, and having a supportive community can make a significant difference.

One unique tip I always give to aspiring CPAs in Louisiana is to pay close attention to the state-specific sections of the CPA exam, particularly the ethics and business law components. Louisiana’s exam includes nuances that are not always covered in standard CPA review courses. My strategy? Supplement your study materials with resources from the State Board of CPAs of Louisiana and local educational institutions. This extra step can give you an edge in not just passing the exam, but excelling in it.

Local Professional CPA Organizations in Louisiana

The Society of Louisiana Certified Public Accountants (LCPA) is a key organization for CPAs in the state. It offers resources, networking opportunities, and professional development for its members.

The State Board of CPAs of Louisiana plays a crucial role in licensing and regulating CPAs in the state. It ensures adherence to professional standards and offers guidance for aspiring CPAs.

These organizations provide essential support and resources for CPAs in Louisiana, fostering professional growth and adherence to high standards in the accounting profession.

Louisiana Exam Information and Resources

For more details, please contact:

State Board of CPAs of Louisiana

601 Poydras Street, Suite 1770
New Orleans, LA 70130
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 504-566-1244
Fax: 504-566-1252

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!


What are the educational requirements for CPA licensure in Louisiana?

Candidates must have 150 semester hours of college education, including a bachelor’s degree. The education should include specific accounting and business courses as outlined by the Louisiana State Board of Accountancy.

Is work experience required for CPA licensure in Louisiana?

Yes, candidates must complete one year (2,000 hours) of work experience in accounting, which must be verified by a licensed CPA.

Do I need to be a resident of Louisiana to become a CPA in the state?

No, Louisiana does not have a residency requirement for CPA licensure. However, candidates must meet all educational and experience requirements set by the state.

Is there an ethics requirement for CPA licensure in Louisiana?

In Louisiana, candidates for CPA licensure are not required to pass an ethics exam before obtaining their license, which is a deviation from the norm in most other states. Nevertheless, they are obligated to fulfill a professional ethics course as part of their Continuing Professional Education (CPE) requirements, as stipulated by the state board.

What are the fees associated with CPA licensure in Louisiana?

In Louisiana, the total fee for taking all four sections of the CPA exam is $1,379.20, with each section costing $344.80. Additionally, there is an initial application fee of $90 for education evaluation. The fee for re-examination registration varies based on how many sections you need to retake.

Bryce Welker, CPA

Bryce Welker is a regular contributor to Forbes, Inc.com, YEC and Business Insider. After graduating from San Diego State University he went on to earn his Certified Public Accountant license and created CrushTheCPAexam.com to share his knowledge and experience to help other accountants become CPAs too. Bryce was named one of Accounting Today’s “Accountants To Watch” among other accolades.   As Seen On Forbes