The AICPA Uniform CPA exam is known to be challenging on its own, but this process is further complicated by each state providing their own set of requirements to fulfil before the applicant qualifies both to sit the exam and to apply for licensure. Therefore, we have compiled a detailed summary of the South Dakota of Accountancy’s requirements. This also includes details on transferring your existing credits or CPA license to South Dakota, or to maintain your existing South Dakota CPA license. As these requirements are subject to change, we recommended confirming all information with the South Dakota Board of Accountancy to make sure you qualify, and to verify that the charges have not been updated since this piece was published.


There is no minimum age requirement to sit the CPA exam in South Dakota.


There are no residency requirements in South Dakota.


South Dakota has no citizenship requirements to sit the CPA exam.


South Dakota has a credit requirement of 150 semester hours from a college or university education with a bachelor’s degree or higher to sit the CPA exam. This institution must be under a Board-recognized accrediting institution. The 150 hours must include the following:

  • Accounting courses (24 hours), at either an undergraduate or graduate level, including these courses:
    • Intermediate or Advanced Accounting
    • Auditing
    • Taxation
    • Cost Accounting
  • Business courses (24 hours) other than accounting courses at the undergraduate or graduate level. They must appear as a course on an official transcript.

Accredited institutions

Non-accredited institutions

If an institution was not accredited at the time that an applicant’s degree was received but was accredited at the time the application was filed with the board, the institution will be recognized as acceptable to the board on condition that:

  • The applicant’ educational program would award them with a full Bachelor’s degree at the time that the institution became accredited
  • The have the institution’s Registrar submit a complete transcript directly to the Board
  • The applicant completes at least 15 semester (22 quarter) hours, or the equivalent, in post-bachelor’s education at the accredited institution, of which at least 9 semester (13 quarter) hours, or the equivalent, shall be in accounting
  • The institution provides a statement that the applicant is in good standing with the institution and that their GPA in these subjects is satisfactory for them to graduate

Foreign Educations

Accountants who graduated from international institutions must have their transcripts evaluated by the Foreign Academic Credential Service, Inc., or a comparable service as approved by the board. The evaluation service will then notify the applicant whether their education was found to be substantially equivalent to that of the South Dakota Board of Accountancy’s educational requirements. If not, they will be informed of which requirements need to be fulfilled. If they are found to be substantially equivalent, then the applicant can request the evaluation service to send an official copy of their evaluation to the South Dakota Board of Accountancy.

Work Experience

South Dakota CPA applicants are required to acquire at least 2,000 hours of work experience either before or after passing the CPA exam. These must be acquired between no less than one year and no more than three years. Additionally, to perform attest functions, the experience requirement is 375 hours in compilations, audits or reviews in any combination.

Otherwise, these can be earned in any state or jurisdiction that is consistent with South Dakota’s requirements. However, the experience must have exposed the applicant to practical experience in the accounting field. They must be fulfilled and tracked under the direct supervision of a CPA whose license is valid and in good standing with their issuing board.


The South Dakota Board of Accountancy requires the candidate to take the AICPA Professional Ethics Comprehensive Course and Exam “For Licensure.” The applicant must achieve 90% or higher in order to apply for licensure. This must be completed within 90 days of completing your experience requirement.

Applying For the CPA Exam

To apply to take the South Dakota CPA exam, applicants will need to:

  • Submit the application form
  • Pay the $100.00 application fee
  • Request the Registrars of all the issuing institutions of their educations to submit official copies of their transcripts. This can either be done through the postal service in sealed envelopes or online directly from the university of college. These must show that the full 150 semester hour requirement is met
  • Include official copies of transcript translations and official copies of the transcript themselves where necessary


Application Fee$100.00
Auditing & Attestation (AUD)$256.15
Financial Accounting & Reporting (FAR)$256.15
Regulation (REG)$256.15
Business Environment & Concepts (BEC)$256.15

There is a $50.00 re-application fee.

Fees are non-refundable. Most exams can be rescheduled. 

NTS Validation Period

You will receive your Notice to Schedule (NTS) upon paying for your Payment Coupon from NASBA. You will have 12 months from the date of issuance in which to write your CPA exam, or the NTS will expire. You will then need to reapply for the exam. Therefore, before trying to save money by applying for multiple exams at once, make sure that you will be able to study for them and schedule them in beforehand.


Applying for CPA Licensure

To apply for CPA licensure in South Dakota, you will need to:

  • Submit your application to the state board
  • Complete and submit the Certificate of Experience form along with three mailing labels with the names and addresses of your character references. The labels will be used to mail reference forms to your character references
  • If applying from another state where you passed part some sections of the exam from:
  • Submit proof of passing the Ethics exam
  • Pay application fee: August 1 to January 31 – $50; February 1 to July 31 – $25

Practice Privilege for Out-of-State License Holders

A CPA who holds an out-of-state license recognized as substantially equivalent to that of South Dakota’s, as stated on NASBA’s site, can practice in South Dakota without registering or paying a fee to the Board on condition that:

  • The license is current and in good standing with the issuing state or jurisdiction
  • Their principal place of business is in the state of licensure
  • They do not live in South Dakota
  • They have fulfilled the 150-credit hour requirement, have acquired one year of work experience and have passed the CPA exam
  • The individual will stop practicing in South Dakota should their license expire in the issuing state

Reciprocal Application

South Dakota recognizes interstate reciprocity of CPA licenses from jurisdictions and states that are considered to be substantially equivalent to that of South Dakota’s. In order to apply for CPA license conversion, you will need to me the following requirements as well:

  • Prove that you passed the CPA exam in another state or jurisdiction
  • Proof of acquiring a bachelor’s degree or higher
  • Proof of having met the educational requirements in South Dakota at the tie of passing the exam
  • The applicant received their PA license at least 4 years prior to application
  • They submit the reciprocal license application form
  • Submit the application form for interstate exchange of examination and licensure information
  • They pay the $150.00 fee ($50.00 late fee if submitted more than 90 days after approval)

International License Reciprocity

South Dakota recognizes international license reciprocity for licensing bodies of foreign countries who meet the following conditions:

  • They allow for similar provision of South Dakota CPA license holders
  • The foreign license was issued by a body that regulates the practice of public accountancy, based on educational and examination requirements established by the foreign authority or by statute
  • Their license is valid and in good standing with the issuing authority
  • The foreign authority’s educational, experience and ethical code requirements is considered to be substantially equivalent to that of the Board
  • They submit the reciprocal license application form
  • They pay the $150.00 fee ($50.00 late fee if submitted more than 90 days after approval)

Issuance of a CPA License without Reciprocity

If an applicant does not meet the substantial equivalency requires, they may still be accepted for reciprocity, provided that:

  • They passed the licensing examination from their jurisdiction with marks that would have been passing grades in South Dakota at that time
  • They had accrued four years’ worth of experience within the last ten years prior to their application that are considered equivalent to the experience requirements of the Board
  • They either met the CE requirements stipulated above or received licensure within the four years prior to application

License Renewal Requirements

South Dakota CPA license holders are required to renew their licenses annularly by August 1st. However, the continuing professional education (CPE)requirements are based on a triennial reporting cycle. During this time, the applicant must acquire and report 120 CPE hours, of which a minimum of 20 CPE must be reported annually between July 1st – June 30th. These hours are to be reported on the license renewal application form.

CPE reciprocity

Non-resident license holders will be considered to have met South Dakota’s CPE requirements upon fulfilling the CPE requirements in the state in which they currently reside. However, if there are no requirements in that state, then they will need to meet the CPE requirements of South Dakota.

Acceptable CPE hours

  • Each correspondence program hour is worth one CPE credit hour
    • Instruction received at accredited colleges or universities:
    • Per semester credit hour = 15 CPE hours
    • Per quarter semester credit hour = 10 CPE hours
    • Per noncredit class hour = 1 CPE hour
  • CPE Lecturer or Discussion Leader (max. 60 CPE hours)
  • Publishing Books or Articles (Max. 60 CPE hours)
  • Motivational courses (Max. 24 CPE hours)
  • Computer courses (Max. 20 CPE hours)
  • Nano-learning courses (max. 4 CPE hours)
  • Excess hours cannot be carried over to the next period

Inactive License Holders

South Dakota CPA license holders can apply to change their license status to ‘inactive.’ This will allow them to maintain their license by paying the annual the ‘inactive’ renewal fees, without the need to meet the CPE requirements. However, they will first be required to submit proof of fulfilling 24 hours of CPE in the 12 months preceding their application for ‘inactive’ status.

However, they will not be permitted to practice as a CPA until their license is made ‘active’ again. In order to switch their license status back, they will need to meet a CPE required of 24 CPE hours in the 12 months prior to their application, and to report them to the Board on this form.

Expired License Holders

Failure to pay the renewal fee or meet the CPE requirements on time will result in the license’s expiration. The applicant can apply for a temporary 90-day certificate, but the applicant will need to submit proof of meeting the renewal requirements. If they fail to meet that deadline, the applicant will need to meet the requirements and appeal for reinstatement.

State Board

South Dakota Board of Accountancy