These are the requirements to qualify as a certified public accountant (CPA) in the state of Texas and gain a CPA license. CPA requirements vary by state but here we will touch on The Lone Star State. On top of passing the CPA exam, which is by no means easy, you must also meet certain requirements, such as age and residency. We have listed the Texas CPA requirements below as well as information relating to the Texas State Board of Public Accountancy.

We suggest you double check any information with the Texas State Board to make sure you qualify.

Age

There are no age requirements for the CPA exam

Residency

There is no residency requirement for Texas.

Citizenship

Texas has a U.S. citizen or legal resident requirement to take the CPA exam.

Education

150 credit hours and a bachelor’s degree or higher from a regionally accredited college or university. 

  • Accounting: 30 semester hours (upper division)
    • Of these, at least 2 semester hours must be in either Accounting or Tax Research and Analysis
  • Business: 21 semester hours
  • Ethics: 3 semester hours

Applicant’s with foreign educations may have their educations evaluated for substantial equivalence by the University of Texas at Austin, Graduate and International Admissions Center. If approved, they will be permitted to take the CPA exam.

Work Experience

Texas requires one year of full-time non-routine accounting work experience under the direct supervision of a licensed CPA. This equates to 2,000 hours of experience that must be acquired over a period of no less that one year and no more than two years prior to application. Full details are available here.

Ethics

How to Apply for the Texas CPA Exam

  • Submit a Background Statement that includes your fingerprint for cross-checking with FBI and Texas Department of Public Safety Crime Records Division files
  • Detail any professional license and denial of examination privileges by other states
  • Request that the Registrars of all the accredited colleges and universities you attended submit official copies of your transcripts directly to the Board
  • Submit the Application of Intent to the Board

Fees

Application of Intent$20
Eligibility Application Fee$60 ($15 per section)
Auditing and Attestation (AUD) Exam$226.15
Financial Accounting & Reporting (FAR) Exam$226.15
Regulation (REG) Exam$226.15
Business Environment & Concepts (BEC) Exam$226.15
Total$984.60

The Eligibility Exam will need to be paid again with each re-attempt.

All fees are non-refundable. 

Read more about CPA exam costs.

Locations

  • Prometric Testing Centers
  • Online Uniform CPA Examination

How to Apply for a Texas CPA License

The Texas State Board of Public Accountancy processes their own CPA license applications. In order to apply for license, you must:

  • Pass all four parts of the Uniform CPA Exam within an 18-month timeframe with a mark of at least 75% per section
  • Submit proof of passing the ethics exam
  • Complete the experience verification form
  • Submit your license application form
  • Pay the $70.00 licensing fee

Practice Privilege for Out-of-State License Holders

In order for an out-of-state CPA to practice within Texas, they must:

  • Hold a CPA issued by state other than Texas
  • Principal place of business is outside of Texas
  • NASBA’s National Qualification Appraisal Service verification of either state CPA licensing, or that your qualifications are comparable to or exceed the requirements held by AICPA

If these apply, you may practice in Texas without notifying the Texas State Board of Public Accountancy.

Reciprocal Application

Interstate license reciprocity

Texas recognizes interstate license reciprocity. According to the Texas State Board of Public Accountancy’s website, this entails:

  • Submitting a Reciprocal Application
  • A Letter of “Good Standing” issued by the U.S. Board of Accountancy where you are currently licensed or a letter 
  • Oath of Office
  • Continuing Professional Education Report Form for Certification by Reciprocity:
    • No CPE required if initial license has been issued less than 12 months,
    • 40 credits are required after one year of licensure
    • 80 credits are required after two years of licensure, and
    • 120 credits are required after three or more years of licensure.
  • Completion Certificate of the Texas board-approved 4 credit ethics course – taken within the last six months
  • $100 Application fee
  • An open-book examination on the Texas Rules of Professional Conduct
  • Submit fingerprint for background check

International license reciprocity

Mutual Recognition Agreements

Texas recognizes Licenses from institutions that are part of NASBA’s Mutual Recognition Agreement (MRA.) These applicants will need to pass the NASBA/AICPA International Qualifications Appraisal Board’s (IQAB) International Qualification Examination (IQEX) and request IQAB to forward the results directly to the Texas State Board of Public Accountancy.

The institutions that form part of the MRA are:

NTS Validation Period

You will need to file an eligibility application for each section of the exam. Once approved, you will receive a Notice to Schedule (NTS). This will allow you a 90-day window in which to schedule your exam. If you fail to do so within that time frame, your NTS will expire and you will need  to reapply and pay the eligibility application fee once again. 

State Board

Texas State Board of Public Accountancy