California CPA Requirements

Are you looking to take the CPA Exam as an exam candidate for California? Each state or region in the United States has a different set of requirements in order to sit for the test. If you are considering California, you should first understand if you meet all of the necessary qualifications including education, residency, and age requirements. Below you will find the appropriate prerequisites, test center locations, exam fees, resources, and contact information to help you better understand all California CPA requirements.

Please note that obtaining a CPA license in CA may require additional qualifications including continuing education or work experience.

The data on this page was last reviewed and updated in January 2019.

CPA Exam Requirements in California


  • 120 semester hours is required to sit for the CPA exam, and 150 semester hours is required for licensure.
  • 24 semester units of accounting subjects
  • 24 semester units of business-related subjects. Refer to the “CBA Educational Requirements Tip Sheet” for details about what classes qualify.

View Other California Education Requirements.

California State Requirements & Education Options

To qualify to take the CPA Exam, you must meet the following minimum educational requirements:

  • A baccalaureate degree or higher conferred by a degree-granting college or university (or foreign equivalent evaluated by a CBA-approved foreign academic credentials evaluation service) accredited by a United States regional institutional accrediting agency or national accrediting agency.
  • 24 semester units of accounting subjects
  • 24 semester units of business-related subjects

Once you have successfully passed all four parts of the CPA Exam, you must meet the following additional educational requirements prior to the CPA licensure:

  • 150 total semester units
  • 20 semester units in accounting study subjects
  • 10 semester units in ethics study subjects


US citizenship is not required.

California residency is not required.


NO Age Requirements.

Find CPA Test Centers

Visit to find a CPA test center in California near you.

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Exam Fees:
Initial Application Fee: $100.00
Audit: $208.40
Financial: $208.40
Regulation: $208.40
Business: $208.40
Total: $933.60

*Registration fee for re-examination depends on the number of parts you are retaking.

Contact Information:
California State Board of Accountancy
Phone: 916-263-3680

2450 Venture Oaks Way, Suite 300,
Sacramento, CA 95833

CPA License Requirements in CA


Continuing education is required.

Work Experience

Work experience is required.

Other Qualification

Social Security Number required.
Pass the AICPA Ethics Exam.

Getting your CPA license in California can mean that additional requirements must be met. Since fees, requirements, and rules may change on a frequent basis, we highly recommend contacting the California State Board of Accountancy for complete licensing information.

Links and Resources:

Learn about CPA Exam Requirements in other states: