Becoming a CPA in Missouri 2024: The Ultimate Guide

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How to Become a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in Missouri

If you’re looking to become a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in Missouri, you’re in the right place. As a CPA, you’ll be recognized as an expert in accounting and finance, and you’ll have the opportunity to work in various industries in Missouri. The path to becoming a CPA may seem challenging. Still, with the right information and resources, you can successfully navigate to a rewarding experience and start an LLC in Missouri in the accounting profession.

At LLCBase, we understand that forming a business can be an overwhelming experience, so we are here to help you every step of the way. In this article, we’ll cover the benefits of becoming a CPA in Missouri, the steps you need to take to achieve this prestigious designation, and some helpful information to guide you on how to become a CPA in Missouri. By following these steps, you’ll be well on your way to starting Missouri LLC and becoming a valuable asset to businesses and individuals.

What is a CPA

A Certified Public Accountant (CPA) is a highly trained professional in accounting who has met specific education, experience, and examination requirements. CPAs provide various services, including auditing, tax preparation, financial planning, and business consulting. They are held to the highest ethical standards and are trusted by businesses and individuals to provide sound financial advice.

Why Become a CPA in Missouri

Becoming a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in Missouri certainly comes with its enticing perks, one of which is higher earning potential. CPAs are often rewarded with significantly higher compensation than their non-certified counterparts, reflecting their specialized knowledge and skills. This financial benefit is particularly valuable in Missouri, where the cost of living can be relatively high. Moreover, CPAs often have more career advancement opportunities, as the designation is frequently seen as a prerequisite for leadership roles in accounting and finance.

Job security is another salient benefit of becoming a CPA in Missouri. Despite the economic fluctuations, the demand for CPAs remains consistently strong. Every business, regardless of its size or industry, needs the expertise of CPAs to navigate through complex tax laws, perform audits, and manage financial operations. Besides, the advent of technology and evolving financial landscape only heighten the relevance of CPAs, as their analytical skills and strategic insights are valuable in adapting to these changes.

Finally, CPA is a highly respected profession in Missouri. The intensity and rigor of the CPA exam, coupled with the strict ethical guidelines that CPAs must adhere to, ensure that only qualified professionals earn this esteemed designation. A CPA’s ability to guide businesses and individuals through the intricate world of taxes and finances is highly appreciated by the business community. Financial transparency, tax compliance, and strategic financial planning are critical to running a successful business or managing personal finances. As a CPA in Missouri, you would be adequately equipped to provide these services, making you an invaluable asset in the business community.

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4 Steps to Become a CPA in Missouri

Here are the essential steps to become a certified public accountant in Missouri.

Step 1: Understanding the CPA Licensing Requirements

Each state, including Missouri, has its own set of specific requirements for becoming a Certified Public Accountant. These requirements are established by the respective state’s Board of Accountancy, which ensures that all licensed CPAs meet the necessary standards of education, experience, and knowledge. To verify the requirements in Missouri, it’s essential to visit the Missouri Board of Accountancy website and thoroughly review the information provided.

The licensing requirements in Missouri typically cover three main areas:

  • Education: Most states, including Missouri, require aspiring CPAs to have a bachelor’s degree in accounting or a related field. Additionally, some states may require several semester hours in specific subjects, such as business law, finance, or taxation. A master’s degree or additional coursework may be necessary to fulfill the educational requirements.
  • Experience: Practical work experience is another crucial aspect of the CPA licensing process. In Missouri, you’ll likely need to gain one to two years of relevant experience under the supervision of a licensed CPA. This hands-on experience allows you to apply the knowledge and skills you’ve gained through your education to real-world situations, preparing you for success in your career as a CPA.
  • Exam: The Uniform CPA Examination is a comprehensive, four-part test that all aspiring CPAs must pass to become licensed. The examination costs $774 (4 exam sections) + $100 application fee in Missouri. The exam covers auditing and attestation, business environment and concepts, financial accounting and reporting, and regulation. Each state, including Missouri, may have specific rules regarding the time frame for passing all four sections and any additional exams or ethics courses that may be required.
  • Other requirements: In Missouri, to be a licensed CPA, you must submit all CPA licensure information.

Step 2: Pursue Your Education and Gain Valuable Experience

To become a CPA in Missouri, completing the necessary education and gaining relevant work experience is essential. These steps will help you meet the licensing requirements and ensure you have the knowledge and skills to excel in your career as Missouri CPA.

  1. Obtain your bachelor’s degree: The foundation of your journey to becoming a CPA in Missouri lies in obtaining a bachelor’s degree in accounting or a related field, such as finance or business administration. This degree will provide a solid understanding of core accounting principles and practices and a broad business background.
  2. Consider additional coursework or a master’s degree: Depending on the specific requirements of Missouri, you may need to complete additional coursework or pursue a master’s degree in accounting or a related field. This advanced education can help you meet the licensing requirements and enhance your knowledge and expertise in specialized areas of accounting, making you a more competitive candidate in the job market.
  3. Gain practical work experience: In addition to your education, it’s crucial to gain hands-on experience in accounting to meet the credit-hour requirement, which is 150 hours in many, but not all, states. Typically, Missouri requires aspiring CPAs to complete one to two years of practical experience under the supervision of a licensed CPA. This experience can be obtained through internships, co-op programs, or full-time employment. It will allow you to apply the theoretical knowledge you’ve gained in your studies to real-world situations.
  4. Network and build connections: As you complete your degree and gain experience, it’s important to network with professionals in the accounting field. Attend industry events, join professional organizations, and connect with classmates, professors, and potential employers. Building a strong network can help you gain valuable insights, advice, and opportunities to become a CPA in Missouri.

Step 3: Pass the CPA Exam

One of the most critical steps in becoming a CPA in Missouri is passing the Uniform CPA Examination, a rigorous and comprehensive test designed to assess your knowledge and skills in various areas of accounting. The CPA Exam is jointly administered by three organizations: the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA), and Prometric, through a contractual agreement to ensure a consistent and high-quality testing experience for all candidates.

The CPA Exam consists of four distinct sections, each focusing on a different area of accounting expertise:

  • Auditing and Attestation (AUD): This section evaluates your understanding of the auditing process, including the principles and procedures used to assess the accuracy and reliability of an organization’s financial information.
  • Business Environment and Concepts (BEC): In this section, you’ll be tested on your knowledge of the broader business environment, including corporate governance, economic concepts, financial management, and information technology.
  • Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR): This section covers the principles and practices of financial accounting, including preparing and analyzing financial statements and applying relevant accounting standards and regulations.
  • Regulation (REG): In the final section, you’ll be assessed on your understanding of federal taxation, business law, and professional ethics and responsibilities.

To pass the CPA Exam, you must score 75 or higher on the four sections within an 18-month window. This time frame ensures that you maintain a current and comprehensive understanding of the accounting field as you work towards your Missouri CPA license.

Step 4: Obtain Your Missouri CPA License

After successfully passing the CPA Exam and fulfilling Missouri’s experience requirements, you’re just one step away from becoming a fully licensed CPA in Missouri. This final step involves applying for your CPA license through the Missouri Board of Accountancy, which will review your application and verify that all requirements have been met.

To finalize your certification, follow these steps:

  1. Gather your documentation: Ensure you have all the necessary documentation before applying for your CPA license in Missouri. This may include proof of your education, exam scores, and verification of your work experience under the supervision of a licensed CPA. Remember that some states may require additional documentation, such as background checks, fingerprinting, or letters of recommendation.
  2. Complete any additional requirements: Depending on the specific regulations of the Missouri Board of Accountancy, you may need to complete additional requirements, such as an ethics exam or continuing professional education (CPE) courses. Check the board’s website for detailed information on any supplementary requirements in Missouri.
  3. Submit your application and fees: Once you have all your documentation and have met any additional requirements, you can submit your application for licensure to the Missouri Board of Accountancy. Be prepared to pay the applicable licensing fee of $100 initial license fee, $100 biennial renewal in Missouri, which can vary depending on the state.
  4. Await approval and license issuance: After submitting your application, the Missouri Board of Accountancy will review your materials and verify that you’ve met all the necessary requirements. Once approved, you’ll receive your CPA license, officially making you a Certified Public Accountant in Missouri.

Once you obtain your license, you begin your practice as a CPA or start a business in Missouri.

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Cost to Become a CPA in Missouri

Becoming a CPA in Missouri is a significant investment in your future, and it’s crucial to understand the various costs involved in the process. These expenses can vary based on factors such as education, CPA Exam fees, and licensing fees. By researching and budgeting for these costs, you can make informed decisions and avoid any financial surprises along your path to CPA licensure in Missouri.

  • Education Expenses: Obtaining a bachelor’s degree in accounting or a related field is one of the most substantial expenses of becoming a CPA. Tuition fees can vary widely depending on the type of institution (public or private), location, and whether you qualify for financial aid or scholarships. Additionally, if your state requires further education, such as a master’s degree or additional coursework, you must budget for those expenses.
  • CPA Exam Fees: To sit for the CPA Exam, you must pay registration fees of $774 (4 exam sections) + $100 application fee in Missouri for the four sections (AUD, BEC, FAR, and REG). These fees can vary by state, and you should check with the Missouri Board of Accountancy for the exact amounts. Additionally, you may incur costs for study materials, review courses, or tutoring to help you prepare for the exam.
  • Licensing Fees: Once you’ve passed the CPA Exam and met the experience requirements, you must apply for your CPA license through the Missouri Board of Accountancy. This process typically involves paying an application fee of $100 initial license fee, $100 biennial renewal and, in some states, additional fees for background checks, fingerprinting, or other requirements.
  • Continuing Professional Education (CPE): As a licensed CPA in Missouri, you’ll be required to complete a certain number of CPE hours to maintain your license. These courses can vary in cost depending on the provider, subject matter, and format (in-person or online).

Advantages of Becoming a CPA

Here are the perks of becoming a CPA in Missouri:

  • Higher earning potential: One of the main advantages of becoming a CPA in Missouri is the potential for increased earnings. On average, CPAs earn significantly more than non-certified accountants due to their specialized expertise and qualifications. As Missouri CPA, you’ll be well-positioned to negotiate higher salaries and enjoy greater financial rewards throughout your career.
  • Job security: The demand for skilled CPAs remains consistently high across various industries, ensuring job stability for those with this prestigious designation. As businesses and individuals in Missouri continue to rely on the expertise of CPAs to navigate the complex world of finance and taxes, you can feel confident in your job security and long-term career prospects.
  • Professional recognition: The CPA designation carries significant weight in the accounting and finance industry, with those who have earned the title is highly respected by colleagues, clients, and employers alike. By becoming Missouri CPA, you’ll be recognized for your hard work and dedication and viewed as a trusted expert.
  • Flexibility and diverse career options: One of the most appealing aspects of becoming a CPA in Missouri is its flexibility in terms of career choices. CPAs can work in various industries and sectors, from public accounting firms to private corporations, government agencies, and nonprofit organizations. You can also start your own business in Missouri. This versatility allows you to explore different career paths and find the perfect fit for your interests and skills, making the CPA designation an invaluable asset in today’s ever-changing job market.

FAQs

What are the education requirements for becoming a CPA in Missouri?
To become a CPA in Missouri, you’ll need a minimum of 150 semester hours of education, with at least 24 semester hours of upper-level accounting courses.
How much does it cost to become a CPA in Missouri?
The cost of becoming a CPA in Missouri can vary, but you can expect to pay for education, application fees, exam fees, and other expenses.
What is the process for becoming a CPA in Missouri?
The process for becoming a CPA in Missouri involves meeting the education and experience requirements, passing the CPA exam, and completing the licensure application.
What are the eligibility requirements for taking the CPA exam in Missouri?
To be eligible to take the CPA exam in Missouri, you must have completed at least a bachelor’s degree and meet additional education and experience requirements.
How many hours of experience are required to become a CPA in Missouri?
In Missouri, you must have a minimum of two years, or 4,000 hours of experience, supervised by a licensed CPA, in order to become licensed as a CPA.
How much experience do I need to become a licensed CPA in Missouri?
In Missouri, you’ll need a minimum of two years, or 4,000 hours, of experience to qualify for licensure as a CPA.
Can I get my CPA license if I live in a state other than Missouri?
Yes, as long as you meet the education and experience requirements, you can apply for a CPA license in Missouri even if you don’t live in the state.
How do I apply for a CPA license in Missouri?
To apply for a CPA license in Missouri, you’ll need to submit an application form with the Missouri State Board of Accountancy and meet the education and experience requirements.
How long does it take to become a CPA in Missouri?
The time it takes to become a CPA in Missouri can vary, but it usually takes several years to meet the education and experience requirements, pass the CPA exam, and complete the licensing process.
How many hours of study are required to prepare for the CPA exam in Missouri?
The number of study hours required to prepare for the CPA exam in Missouri depends on the individual, but most students spend at least 100-200 hours studying for each section of the exam.
Are there any residency requirements for becoming a licensed CPA in Missouri?
No, there are no residency requirements for becoming a licensed CPA in Missouri, but you must meet the education and experience requirements.
What types of accounting courses should I take to become a CPA in Missouri?
To become a CPA in Missouri, you should take courses in topics such as financial accounting, cost accounting, auditing, taxation, and accounting information systems.
What is the passing percentage required to get a CPA license in Missouri?
In Missouri, candidates must achieve at least a 75 on each of the four sections of the CPA exam to pass.
Do I have to renew my CPA license every year in Missouri?
Yes, you’ll need to renew your CPA license every year in Missouri by December 31st.
Is there a continuing education requirement for Missouri CPAs?
Yes, Missouri CPAs must complete a minimum of 40 hours of continuing education every two years, including at least 2 hours of ethics training.
Can I take the CPA exam if I have a criminal record in Missouri?
It depends on the nature and severity of your criminal record, but a criminal conviction isn’t an automatic disqualifier for becoming a CPA in Missouri.
What is the cost of the CPA exam in Missouri?
The cost of the CPA exam in Missouri depends on the number of sections you’re taking and varies from $208.40 – $924.60 per section.
How can I schedule and take the CPA exam in Missouri?
You can schedule and take the CPA exam in Missouri through the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) and Prometric.
What is the deadline for applying to take the CPA exam in Missouri?
There is no strict deadline for applying to take the CPA exam in Missouri, but it’s best to apply at least several months before you plan to take the exam.
Can I apply for the CPA exam before completing the education or experience requirements in Missouri?
Yes, you can still apply for the CPA exam before completing the education or experience requirements in Missouri.
How long does it take for CPA exam results to be released in Missouri?
The AICPA releases CPA exam scores to the candidate’s account and NASBA sends out score notices to boards of accountancy within 24 hours of candidate assessment. Each section score report itself is produced immediately when the candidate completes the examination.
What happens if I fail the CPA exam in Missouri?
If you fail a section of the CPA exam in Missouri, you’re allowed to retake that section, and candidates have 18 months to take the exam section they attempted.
How many times can I retake the CPA exam in Missouri?
In Missouri, there’s no limit to the number of times you can retake the CPA exam as long as you meet other eligibility requirements.
Can I use CPA exam scores from another state in Missouri?
Yes, if you’ve passed any sections of the CPA exam in another state, you can transfer those scores to Missouri as long as your scores are still valid.
What is the age requirement to become a CPA in Missouri?
There is no age requirement to become a CPA in Missouri, but you must have completed at least a bachelor’s degree with additional coursework or have the experience required.
Can I become a CPA in Missouri with a non-accounting degree?
Yes, you can become a CPA in Missouri with a non-accounting degree but must have completed at least 24-semester credits or the equivalent in accounting including cost accounting among others.
What is Missouri’s experience requirement for CPAs?
In Missouri, you should have at least two years of experience as a CPA to earn your license.
Are there any application fees associated with becoming a CPA in Missouri?
Yes, in Missouri, you’ll owe a double fee after passing all exam sections, to the Board in order to keep the results of the exam valid.
Does Missouri participate in any CPA mobility program?
Yes, Missouri recognizes and participate in the practice of CPA mobility rules, which there is an agreement between different agencies in participating jurisdictions for CPAs to gain practice privileges and to produce on-the-move registry.READ LESS
What is needed in order to become a CPA in Missouri?
In order to become a CPA in Missouri, one must have a bachelor’s degree and also pass the CPA exam.
How many hours of accounting credit are required to become a CPA in Missouri?
In Missouri, one must have completed 150 credit hours – at least 24 of which must be accounting credits – in order to become a CPA.
Can I get a CPA license in Missouri if I did not attend school in the state?
Yes, as long as you meet Missouri’s education and experience requirements and pass the CPA exam, you can obtain a license in Missouri even if you did not go to school in the state.
How many exams make up the CPA exam in Missouri?
The CPA exam in Missouri consists of four parts
How is the CPA exam scoring done in Missouri?
The CPA exam in Missouri is scored on a scale that ranges from 0 to 99. A minimum score of 75 is required to pass each of the four parts.
What happens if I fail a part of the CPA exam in Missouri?
If you fail a part of the CPA exam in Missouri, you may retake the exam as many times as you need within 18 months of your original testing window.
Does Missouri offer reciprocity with other states for CPA licenses?
Yes, Missouri offers reciprocity with other states for CPA licenses. However, the individual must meet Missouri’s education and experience requirements, as well as pass the CPA exam.
How much does it cost to take the CPA exam in Missouri?
The cost to take the CPA exam in Missouri is approximately $200-$300 per part, depending on the specific part.
How often can I take the CPA exam in Missouri?
You can take the CPA exam in Missouri as many times as you need within your 18-month testing window.
Can I begin taking the CPA exam before I complete all of my education requirements in Missouri?
Yes, you can begin taking the CPA exam in Missouri before you complete all of your education requirements, as long as you have completed either 120 or 130 credit hours, depending on the specific requirement.
How long is the CPA exam in Missouri?
The CPA exam in Missouri is timed. Part I – Auditing and Attestation – is four hours long, Part II – Business Environment and Concepts – is three hours long, Part III – Financial Accounting and Reporting – is four hours long, and Part IV – Regulation – is three hours long.
How can I gain experience in order to become a CPA in Missouri if I do not have any relevant work experience?
You can gain experience for your CPA certification in Missouri through internships, externships, or volunteer work, provided that the experience was completed under the supervision of an authorized CPA.
How many educational credit applications can be submitted per transcript for Missouri CPA candidates?
Only one educational credit application can be submitted per transcript for Missouri CPA candidates.
Is there a CPE (continuing professional education) requirement to maintain my Missouri CPA license?
Yes, there is a CPE requirement to maintain your Missouri CPA license. You must complete 120 hours of CPE every three years.
Must a CPA candidate have state residency to sit for the CPA exam in Missouri?
No, residency is not a requirement to sit for the CPA exam in Missouri.
How long is my Missouri CPA certification valid for?
Your Missouri CPA certification is valid for two years before it must be renewed.
Is there a minimum age requirement in Missouri to become a CPA?
No, there is no minimum age requirement in Missouri to become a CPA.
How long is the application processing time for a Missouri CPA license?
The processing time for a Missouri CPA license application can take up to six weeks.
Does Missouri offer any alternative paths to become a CPA?
Yes, class B licensed public accountants who have been licensed for more than seven years can automatically qualify to sit for the CPA exam in Missouri without having to meet the state’s education requirements.
Must I take a legislative update class when renewing my Missouri CPA license?
Yes, you must take a two-hour legislative update class when renewing your Missouri CPA license.
Can my experience as an accountant meet the Missouri CPA experience requirement?
Yes, experience as an accountant can meet the Missouri CPA experience requirement, as long as it meets the criteria set by the state board of accountancy.
Just to be clear–are there residency requirements in order to initially register for Missouri’s CPA exam?
No, there are no residency requirements in order to initially register for Missouri’s CPA exam.
What exact calculations/format/guidelines must a Missouri candidate follow when calculating their educational requirements to sit for the CPA exam?
To calculate your educational qualifications needed to take the CPA exam in Missouri, you must use the prescribed formula calculated by hand so that the formula evaluates to the exact credit hours required by Missouri law.
Are there additional Missouri CPA certification requirements for practicing with nonprofit and governmental organizations?
The Missouri State Board of Accountancy recognizes an “inactive status” certification for unique CPA positions such as inactive CPAs who partake in non-profit governing or banking boards.
Can CPA applicants sit for Missouri’s CPA exam if they have graduate degrees?
Yes, you can sit for Missouri’s CPA exam if you have a graduate degree provided that you pass the CPA exam and meet the state education and experience requirements.
Is Missouri an at-will employment state for accountants?
Yes, Missouri is an at-will employment state for accountants.
Is it possible to obtain a temporary Missouri CPA status?
No, a temporary Missouri CPA status is not available. You must obtain a regular Missouri CPA certification.

Also Read

How to Save Money While Starting a Becoming Cpa in Missouri

First and foremost, it is essential for individuals to carefully research and compare the various CPA exam review courses available. While some courses may come with a hefty price tag, there are also more affordable options that still provide comprehensive study materials and practice exams. By investing time in finding a high-quality yet budget-friendly review course, aspiring CPAs can significantly reduce their expenses.

Additionally, many universities and colleges offer CPA exam preparation courses at a fraction of the cost of private review courses. These courses are often taught by experienced instructors and cover all the necessary topics for success on the exam. Taking advantage of these more affordable options can help individuals save a substantial amount of money without compromising the quality of their exam preparation.

Another way aspiring CPAs can save money is by leveraging free resources available online. There are numerous websites, forums, and study groups dedicated to helping individuals prepare for the CPA exam at no cost. These resources offer study guides, practice questions, and tips from individuals who have successfully passed the exam. By taking advantage of these free resources, aspiring CPAs can supplement their exam preparation without spending a dime.

Furthermore, individuals can save money by carefully planning their exam schedule. The CPA exam consists of four sections that candidates must pass within an 18-month window. By strategically scheduling their exam dates, individuals can minimize the risk of having to retake a section due to time constraints. This can save both time and money in the long run.

Finally, aspiring CPAs can reduce their expenses by being strategic in their choice of study materials. While it may be tempting to purchase all the latest textbooks and study guides, it is essential to remember that the most important thing is to understand the concepts and apply them effectively on the exam. By focusing on mastering the material rather than acquiring expensive study materials, individuals can save money without sacrificing their chances of success.

In conclusion, pursuing a career as a CPA in Missouri does not have to break the bank. By being resourceful, strategic, and disciplined in their exam preparation, aspiring CPAs can save money while still achieving their goals. With careful planning and a commitment to excellence, individuals can successfully navigate the challenges of becoming a CPA without incurring excessive costs. So, take advantage of affordable review courses, utilize free resources, strategically schedule your exams, and prioritize understanding the material over acquiring expensive study materials. By following these tips, aspiring CPAs can set themselves up for success without draining their finances.

Conclusion

Becoming a CPA in Missouri is a challenging but rewarding process that requires dedication, hard work, and determination. By following the steps outlined in this article and staying committed to your goals, you’ll be well on your way to starting Missouri LLC and joining the ranks of highly respected professionals in the accounting industry.

As Missouri CPA, you’ll enjoy the benefits of increased earning potential, job security, and flexibility, as well as the satisfaction of helping businesses and individuals in The Show-Me State community navigate the complex world of taxes and finances. So, don’t wait any longer – start your journey towards becoming a CPA in Missouri today! To find more valuable resources and guidance on this process, visit LLCBase and take advantage of the information available. Your future as a successful CPA in Missouri is just a click away!

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