Massachusetts CPA Exam & License Requirements

Massachusetts CPA Exam & License Requirements

Massachusetts requires 150 credit hours to earn a CPA license, however you may sit for the CPA exam with only 120 credit hours.  The work experience requirements differ depending on whether you want a reporting or non-reporting license (see details below). With a graduate degree in accounting, business, or law, no experience is required for licensure, but the candidate can only apply for the non-reporting license.

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

  1. Minimum age: 18
  2. U.S. Residency NOT Required
  3. State Residency NOT required

Education Requirements

  1. Bachelor degree or above
  2. 120 semester units from an accredited university or educational institution
  3. Accounting Courses: 21 semester units (financial accounting, cost accounting, auditing, taxation)
  4. Business Courses: 9 semester units (business law, finance and information systems)

*Important Note: You must have completed all the requirements for your bachelor’s degree before you may sit for the exam

MA CPA License Requirements

Education

  • 150 semester units from an accredited university or institution
  • 30 semester hours of undergraduate accounting courses or 18 semester hours of graduate courses for licensure

*Important Note: You have 3 years from the time you receive notice of passing all 4 sections of the exam to meet the educational requirements for CPA licensure

Work Experience

(a) Non-Reporting License: Allows you to perform all accounting services except issuing reports on financial statements

  • 1 year of public accounting experience or 3 years of non-public accounting in a position that is substantially equivalent to public accounting
  • Experience must be beyond entry level and under the supervision of a CPA
  • No experience required if you have a graduate degree in accounting, business, or law

(b) Reporting License: Able to issue reports on financial statements

  • 1 year of public accounting experience, and 1000 hours of attest experience, of which no more than 300 hours may consist of full disclosure compilation

Ethics Exam

  • No Requirement

Massachusetts CPA Exam Fees

The cost to take all four sections of the CPA exam in Massachusetts is $743 plus the initial $195 application fee.  The re-examination registration fees vary depending on the number of sections you are signing up for.

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:$195

**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 Massachusetts expires 6 months after issuance.

Additional CPA Requirements

  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

MA Exam Information and Resources

MA CPA License FAQ

MA CPA Exam Candidates

Massachusetts CPA Requirements

For more details, please contact:

Massachusetts Board of Public Accountancy
1000 Washington Street, Suite 710
Boston,  MA  02118-6100
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 617-727-1806
Fax: 617-727-2197

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!

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13 Comments
  • Audrey
    Posted at 25 March, 2017 00:22 AM Reply

    Hello, I just passed all parts of the CPA exam but I was registered in New York State. Can I transfer my credits to Massachusetts to get the Non-Reporting License because I hold a Master Degree in Accounting. Besides, for the work experience requirements, is that required that the verifier must be your direct supervisor?Thanks!

    • BWelk
      Posted at 28 March, 2017 16:55 PM Reply

      Check out this article about the mobility of the CPA license and how mobilty can be applied to you–

    • Mayank Saxena
      Posted at 6 June, 2016 16:23 PM Reply

      Hello, I am an Indian CA- Student, currently in my training phase. I am a holder of Bachelor and Masters in commerce degree from an Indian University(i.e. I have 150 hours credit). I also have 3 years of experience(CA-training) in auditing and advisory department of a big4. Will this training qualifies for CPA experience requirements?And as I hold graduate degree, will i get exemption from practical training?

      • BWelk
        Posted at 7 June, 2016 21:58 PM Reply

        Can anyone here help Mayank with this specific question?

      • Anna
        Posted at 11 March, 2016 00:12 AM Reply

        Hello,Can I sit for the cpa Exam without an auditing course but having everything else that is required? I have a bachelor's in business, have 18 credits in accounting instead of 21.Thanks. Anna .

        • BWelk
          Posted at 31 March, 2016 20:18 PM Reply

          I'm not sure Anna, can anyone else here help her out??

        • Tim
          Posted at 25 August, 2015 16:18 PM Reply

          I have been working for a small accounting firm for over a year. The owner is a CPA, but it is in an inactive status. We have not done audits in our office and focus primarily on preparing personal tax returns. We also do estate, trust, and corporate returns.Is that sufficient for the public accounting experience?

          • BWelk
            Posted at 2 September, 2015 02:40 AM Reply

            In California your work experience has to be signed off by an active CPA license holder.. does anyone else here know if Massachusetts has the same rule?

          • Gregory
            Posted at 19 May, 2014 03:56 AM Reply

            I have 200+ college credits: 2 bachelor degrees (one in Finance) and an MBA, but I wonder if I am short on Accounting credits. During undergrad, I see Cost, Financial, and Managerial Accounting (3 credits ea = 9). During Grad School, I see Financial & Managerial Accounting (4 credits ea = 8). How many credit hrs am I short? Thanks!

            • Priscilla
              Posted at 24 April, 2014 14:27 PM Reply

              Hi, I have a bachelor's degree in a non-business related field. I am done with my 30 credits in accounting, but will have yet to complete the required business courses. My plan is to take the 9 credits in business initially. Can I sit for the exam with a degree (150 credit hours), 30 credit hours of accounting, and 9 credit hours of business? I am confused with the requirements. Thanks.

              • BWelk
                Posted at 28 April, 2014 12:38 PM Reply

                Hi Priscilla,Yes you could sit for the exam with a bachelor's degree, 30 credit hours of accounting, and 9 credit hours of qualified business classes.

              • song
                Posted at 25 March, 2014 03:49 AM Reply

                To whom my concern :I am a undergraduate student at UNLV Nevada. I will be graduate with total 124 hrs at accounting major in this summer 2014. If I move to MA around Sep 2014. What is specific requirements or any need to be noticed for sitting to CPA exam in MA? Please advise. Appreciate !

                • Bryce
                  Posted at 27 March, 2014 14:57 PM Reply

                  Song,You would be able to sit for the MA CPA exam with 124 credits as long as you fulfilled all the required accounting and business courses above.Cheers,Bryce