New York CPA Exam & License Requirements

New York CPA Exam & License Requirements

Updated:January 20, 2019
Bryce Welker, CPA

The state of New York requires 150 semester hours as well as 1 year of work experience in order to obtain your CPA license. However, you may sit for the CPA exam upon completion of your bachelor’s degree and 120 semester hours. One unique thing about New York is that you can waive the education requirements if you have 15 years of public accounting experience.

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

  1. At least 21 years old
  2. Bachelor’s degree or higher
  3. US Citizenship NOT required to take exam
  4. Residency NOT required

You must complete ONE of the following options:

Option 1

120 credit hours (to sit for the CPA exam)

Including coursework in the following areas:

  1. Financial Accounting and Reporting
  2. Taxation
  3. Cost or Managerial Accounting
  4. Auditing and Attestation Services

*Please note that 150 credit hours and additional coursework (Option 2) must be completed before you can get your CPA license.

Option 2: 

150 credit hour licensure requirement

Must meet one of the following:

  1. Complete a registered 150 program approved by NYSED. Complete and submit this NY Program Form
  2. Complete a master’s degree with a major in accounting from a school accredited in accounting by AACSB
  3. Complete a bachelor’s or higher degree and a minimum of 150 semester (225 quarter) hours in college level education to include the following:
  • 33 semester hours in accounting to include each of the following:
    • Financial accounting,
    • Cost accounting,
    • Taxation,
    • Audit and attestation,
    • Accounting research, and
    • 36 semester hours in general business

Note: Communications and Ethics and Responsibilities are required and may come from either accounting or business.

* 1 semester hour = 1 credit hour

Option 3

Fifteen years of public accounting experiences acceptable to the State Board for Public Accountancy may be substituted for education.

Please visit for more details on this.

NY CPA License Requirements

Must complete one year of full-time work experience in accounting verified by an active CPA licensee. Experience may be earned in a public accounting firm, government, private industry or an educational institution.

New York CPA Exam Fees

The cost to take all four sections of the CPA exam in New York is $743 plus the initial $125 application fee.  The re-examination application fee is $55 – $100  plus the exam fees:

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:$100

*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 New York 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 one year of verified accounting work experience
  3. Fill out and submit all required CPA license application paperwork
  4. Pay the $375 application fee

*Note: You are NOT required to take the CPA ethics exam in the state of New York, pretty lucky!

State Education Department
Division of Professional Licensing Services
89 Washington Avenue, 2nd Fl. East Mezzanine
Albany, NY 12234-1000
Phone: 518-474-3817 Ext. 270
Fax: 518-402-5354
Email: [email protected][email protected]

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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  • Nana Kwakye Brobbey
    Posted at 9 December, 2018 13:46 PM Reply

    Am a chartered Accountant from Ghana, please I would like to find out if I qualify to write the CPA exams and addition if I also qualify for any exemptions . Thank you

    • pr1nyc1
      Posted at 19 December, 2016 17:29 PM Reply

      Thank you for writing this page. My question is: once i pass my exams, is there a time limit where i have to get all 150 credits?

      • BWelk
        Posted at 22 December, 2016 23:05 PM Reply

        Yes there is a time limit, I'm not sure what it is for NY as this varies from state to state give your BOA a call and they'll be able to tell you.Cheers,Bryce

      • Jay
        Posted at 22 February, 2016 02:06 AM Reply

        Hello. For the experience requirement, most of my responsibility are as a bookkeeper. Will they reject the experience requirement for lack of other responsibility listed? Your answer is much appreciated. I can't seem to find too much information on this part. Thank You

        • Shlomo Halberstam
          Posted at 12 August, 2016 00:34 AM Reply

          Bookkeeping experience is acceptable as long as you are working under the supervision of a CPA who is willing to sign off for you. You can read more about the acceptable forms of experience here

        • JC
          Posted at 11 February, 2016 19:27 PM Reply

          Hi - I've been out of school for 20 years and never actually got my Bachelor's degree (in Finance) as I was 2 classes short. I worked under a CPA for 13 years and have been working as Bookkeeper/Finance Manager/Finance Director/Controller for the last 15 years. Is it possible for me to sit for my CPA in NY or NJ?

          • Shlomo Halberstam
            Posted at 12 August, 2016 00:36 AM Reply

            Per the NYSED website"Fifteen years of experience acceptable to the State Board for Public Accountancy may be substituted for education for admission to the examination and licensure. This experience must be earned under the direct supervision of a U.S. certified public accountant (CPA) as outlined above in the Experience Requirements section."

          • Akif Abbas
            Posted at 11 February, 2016 14:56 PM Reply

            Hey,I have a bachelors degree in Accounting from UK University but it is not AACSB recognized. Can I'm eligible to sit for the CPA Exam under 120 credit hours requirement?

            • Tiffany Mariano
              Posted at 9 December, 2015 18:53 PM Reply

              Hi!,I would like to take the exam in NY, however, since my future husband is Military, he is always moving around. Will my 1 year work experience have to be in the state I took the exam in? Thanks!-Tiffany

              • David
                Posted at 25 August, 2015 17:35 PM Reply

                I have the same question as LC - I passed all four parts of the CPA exam in March 2012 and for personal reasons I haven't yet fulfilled the 150 credit requirement (I need 18 more credits). Is there a time limit for when I need to complete the requirement or can i continue a 1 class/semester pace. (I've read some forums say 3 years, another 5 years and another with no limit) I appreciate the response, thank you.

                • BWelk
                  Posted at 2 September, 2015 02:28 AM Reply

                  In California there was a 5 year limit to get all CPA license requirements completed after you pass all 4 CPA exams.. Does anyone here know if NY has the same time limit?

                  • Xavier
                    Posted at 15 May, 2016 21:41 PM Reply

                    According to NY Public Accountancy, you will have unlimited time to meet the education or experience requirement. "In New York State, once an applicant has passed all four sections of the examination, the examination credit does not expire. Further, after successfully passing all four sections of the examination, there is no time requirement to meet the education or experience requirements for licensure. This applies to candidates who physically sat for the exam in the U.S. or abroad at an overseas location"

                • Tania G
                  Posted at 25 August, 2015 17:30 PM Reply

                  Hello I just got my transcripts reviewed for my CPA license. I am missing 3 credits in advance accounting. I'm in NYC. Where can I take a credit course in accounting without signing into a masters degree? I have called several schools but they all direct me to continuing ed which offers non credit courses. Can you advise for anything in NY or online? Any suggestion will be very appreciated!

                  • Shlomo Halberstam
                    Posted at 12 August, 2016 00:39 AM Reply

                    Try Excelsior College they are online and have a program recognized by NYS

                    • TEnz tson
                      Posted at 5 June, 2018 18:08 PM Reply

                      Hi, since you have your foreign transcript reviewed, can you please let me know how as I have got my transcript sealed from my university in India, however, I couldn’t figure out the whole process to get it evaluated by NASBA as it seemed confusing. Please let me know it would be great if you could help me with that. Or let me know how I can get in touch with you.

                    • LC
                      Posted at 24 August, 2015 17:43 PM Reply

                      Hi, In NY State, is there a time limit to meet the 150 hours education requirement and one year working experience requirement?

                      • Rohit garg
                        Posted at 16 July, 2015 13:19 PM Reply

                        I am MBA in Finance and Bachelordegree in commerce. I have scored 155 semester credits completed with Accounting Credits Received as 21.25. can you please let me know if I ameligible for exams if I selected NY state board. Also please let me know the criteriafor licensure If I appearing the exams in middle east

                        • Rahul chopra
                          Posted at 1 July, 2015 13:39 PM Reply

                          Hie,I am having a 3 year bachelor degree in accountancy , and chartered accountancy from india.From my WES evaluation report i am getting following semester credits:-For bachelor degree:- 120For chartered accountancy:- 73, Total :- 193 I applied for California CPA licence and got approved. They considered chartered accountancy credits of 73 in calculation of 150 requirement.I would like to know whether 150 semester hour calculation include the chartered accountancy course from India for New York state?

                          • sho zaman
                            Posted at 18 February, 2017 19:14 PM Reply

                            Hello Mr Rahul, I'm in a same situation as yours. However I have sent my docs to NYS. Did you manage to find out something afterwards ! So be grateful if you could share your experiences

                          • Christina
                            Posted at 3 June, 2015 19:46 PM Reply

                            Should I pass the exam first with my 120 credits and then complete the rest of the education requirement? Or should I do as much as I can now and take the test?

                            • BWelk
                              Posted at 23 June, 2015 17:51 PM Reply

                              Hi Christina,It really depends on your personality. For me personally, I would much rather take extra classes to knock out all of the remaining credits and finish college as soon as possible. That's because I like to focus on one objective at a time so I can stay focused on that one task which improves my chance of success.Cheers,Bryce

                            • Al
                              Posted at 24 March, 2015 01:45 AM Reply

                              I am a second degree student, is there a way I can take all therequired accounting courses to sit for the CPA without getting a second degree?Once I take all the Basic Accounting and Advanced Accounting Courses I will beover 150 credits. My only concern is that I will also need thebusiness/finance courses which are included in the degree to become licensed.Is this correct? Any insight would be greatly appreciated.

                              • Elaine
                                Posted at 18 March, 2015 10:18 AM Reply

                                Hi, I have a few questions about my eligibility to take the CPA exam. I am currently a student graduating in June 2015 with major in finance and 120 credits, am I qualified to sit for the CPA exam? If not, what about getting a master degree in accounting with 150 credits? Thank you for your time in advance!

                                • Sakina Mirza
                                  Posted at 12 March, 2015 08:17 AM Reply

                                  It's listed here that 1 year of work is required with the degree.. is that any job or a job directly related to accounting, finance, etc.. can bank work or interning at a firm be acceptable?

                                  • BWelk
                                    Posted at 22 March, 2015 23:48 PM Reply

                                    It refers to a job as an accountant. So if you were working at a bank in an accounting role that would qualify if your supervisor was a CPA and could sign off for you.Cheers,Bryce

                                    • BWelk
                                      Posted at 22 March, 2015 23:49 PM Reply

                                      From the NYBOA website: "accounting services or advice involving the use of accounting, attest, compilation, management advisory, financial advisory, tax, or consulting skills under the supervision of a certified public accountant licensed in one of the U.S. jurisdictions".

                                  • Lillian
                                    Posted at 11 March, 2015 02:45 AM Reply

                                    Hi,I would like to know if working as an analyst will count as experience (if my boss is a CPA in the same state). Also, what are some non-typical jobs (by typical I mean: auditor, tax preparer, bookkeeper) that will count as experience? Thank you!

                                    • BWelk
                                      Posted at 22 March, 2015 23:45 PM Reply

                                      Hi,To my knowledge a job working as an analyst wouldn't count towards the CPA experience requirement. The NY BOA could help clarify which specific positions that would.

                                      • BWelk
                                        Posted at 22 March, 2015 23:51 PM Reply

                                        To follow up on this, it would really depend on what kind of analyst. From the NYBOA website: "accounting services or advice involving the use of accounting, attest, compilation, management advisory, financial advisory, tax, or consulting skills under the supervision of a certified public accountant licensed in one of the U.S. jurisdictions".Again, you will need to contact the Board to make sure on any non-traditional accounting roles.

                                    • Sharvil
                                      Posted at 4 March, 2015 16:16 PM Reply

                                      I passed all exam in October 2013 form new jersey state with no experience. Now, i am working in New York with non for profit organization.Can i apply for licence in New York ? If Yes, then should i need to transfer my exam scores in NY ? Just an FYI, my senior is a CPA and he'll sign off for my experience requirement.Thanks in advance.

                                      • BWelk
                                        Posted at 8 March, 2015 01:05 AM Reply

                                        Can someone here help answer Sharvil's question? I am not sure about the answer..

                                      • neil
                                        Posted at 21 December, 2014 23:21 PM Reply

                                        Hello I am currently a student a Rutgers graduating in May 2015 with 150 credits and a bachelors degree. I will have 120 credits completed on my transcript on jan 8. Can I apply sit for the exam without getting my degree.

                                        • Elena
                                          Posted at 21 November, 2014 21:27 PM Reply

                                          I passed my cpa exam more than 10 years ago but never got the license. It is in ny?Can I obtain my cpa?

                                          • BWelk
                                            Posted at 26 November, 2014 12:48 PM Reply

                                            No, there is a 5 year limitation of when you must complete all the requirements.

                                          • oreo
                                            Posted at 6 November, 2014 08:46 AM Reply

                                            Hello. I have a few questions about my eligibility to take the CPA exam. I recently graduated from Purdue University with a degree in engineering and currently pursuing a master in engineering at a school in New York. I have about 140 credit hours from my undergrad degree and I had taken 6 credit hours relevant to accounting which are financial accounting and managerial accounting 1. Am I eligible to take the CPA exam?