CPAs, much like other professionals, need to maintain their competence by keeping tab of changes related to accounting practices and tax norms. Continuing Professional Education (CPE) is a must in certain professions, and every state has its own set of requirements. If you are a practicing CPA, you probably know that you need to meet the CPE requirements to renew your license. With your busy schedule and work commitments, it might be hard to take up continual education. We have enlisted a few tips below for your help.
Make a list
The CE requirements for renewing CPA license differ in most states. A vast majority of states require CPAs to complete an average of 40 hours of CPE every year. Your first step is to find the details about such requirements. If the license renewal term is three years, you will have to complete 120 hours of CE. You can choose to opt for CPE subscriptions online to get quick information. As a crucial part of the CPE requirement, accountants must also take up an ethics course in most states, with learning hours between two and eight hours.
Explore your career
It’s important to point here that CE is not just about meeting the norms or retaining your license, it is also about having professional competence. You can expand your expertise and knowledge as a professional, which will help your clients in a big way. It is surprising to many, but individual tax payers and businesses often enquire about the qualifications of accountants before hiring one. Try to evaluate your long-term career goals before choosing CPE courses.
Many CPAs feel that they can complete their courses at the last minute, which isn’t a good idea in the first place. You may need to report CE information annually in some states, and even if there’s no such requirement, your firm is still subject to audits. Ideally, you should plan your courses after each renewal. There are many online sites that offer Cpethink.com , which can be handy. Self-study is ideal for accountants, who otherwise don’t have the time for attending regular classes or live seminars. All you need is two hours every week, and you are good to go.
With a little care and patience, you can complete your Continuing Professional Education (CPE) courses on time. Just start a tad early to avoid last minute issues. Missing credits can mean suspension of your license, so better be careful!