What is CPA License & can A CPA practice in India

All qualified Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) require a CPA license to offer their services as Certified Public Accountants. If you hold a CPA licensure, you can use the term CPA on your business cards, social media handles, run a CPA firm independently, and sign audit reports. As a CPA license holder, you are also eligible to be a partner or even an owner in the accounting business. 

How to Obtain a CPA License in India?

  • Educational Qualifications

The candidate should be a graduate preferably in the relevant field of finance, accounting, economics or any other business-related courses. 

  • CPA Exams

The most important step for an aspiring CPA is to fulfil the criteria required for CPA exams and pass all the exams. You need 120 accounting credits in academics to sit for the US CPA exam. If we align this with Indian education system, you need to complete graduation along with 1 year of post-graduation to be eligible to appear for CPA exam. 

At IMS Proschool, we provide full-fledged training for CPA course. Right from application process to classroom training and mock tests, our rigorous preparation makes you exam-ready. 

  • Pass the CPA Exam

The US CPA exam has 4 parts namely Auditing and Attestation, Regulation, Financial Accounting and Reporting and Business Environments and Concepts. You have to pass all these exams in order to get a CPA license. 

Did you know, by enrolling at Proschool’s CPA Prep course, you get World class Becker study prep + live online classes + Get Additional Credit Programs + Gateway To Big 10 Consulting Firms

  • Pass the Ethics Exam

Once you have passed the CPA exams, you have to also pass the ethics exam conducted by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). 

  • Pay the CPA License Fee

After passing the ethics exam, you have to pay the fees to obtain the license. The CPA license fee paid every year is in the range of $50-500 per year. The exact amount may vary from state to state. 

Also Read – What Is the Total Cost of CPA in India?

  • Continuous Professional Education

You have to renew your CPA license every year. For this, you have to pay a renewal fee and complete 40 hours of continuing education every year to renew the license. 

  • Meet the Eligibility Criteria to Obtain CPA License

150 accounting credits (graduation + post-graduation) are required to obtain a CPA license. Apart from educational qualifications, 2000 hours of work experience equivalent to 2 years is also required for license. This is the general criteria for US CPA license eligibility. 

Holding a CPA license not only signifies a high level of technical expertise but also shows a commitment to upholding the highest ethical standards in the profession of accounting. 

Career Scope of CPA in India

The Big 4’s are the leading organizations that hire CPAs in India. CPAs in India are well-versed with US GAAP and IFRS reporting. They can also handle International Financial Accounting and Corporate Governance efficiently. 

The scope of CPA is prevalent in these areas:

  • Financial Accounting

CPAs play a big part in handling a company’s money matters. They make sure that the company keeps track of its finances correctly. They also check if the company is spending money wisely. Besides making financial statements, they give advice to the company’s leaders on smart ways to invest. They also tell people outside the company about its financial health. They keep an eye on how the economy is doing, which helps in making good money decisions.

  • Corporate Finance

CPAs have a solid understanding of accounting consequences and acquisition aspects. Hence, they can play a pivotal role during initial public offering (IPO) or further public offering (FPO). Because of their extensive knowledge, CPAs can even provide guidance to management to plan and execute various financial strategies. 

  • Internal Auditing

Internal auditing is like a financial check-up for a company. CPAs can do this financial check up and go through financial records to ensure that everything is in order. They advice to the company’s management on best practices to manage and control risks effectively. 

  • Tax Preparation & Planning

CPAs are experts in tax matters. They are up-to-date on tax laws and regulations, so they can provide the best advice on how to navigate the complex tax system. Their expertise ensures you’re in compliance with all tax laws while also making the most of availing tax benefits. 

CPAs play a crucial role in tax planning as they help you minimize your tax liability. 

  • Management Reporting

Companies also recruit CPAs who can provide guidance on various aspects of technical accounting, balance sheet review, and preparation of annual reports. They can understand the business in detail, draw valid conclusions and caution the administration about various changes. 


Beyond accounting, what are the other services I can provide if I hold a CPA license in India?

You can provide a range of services like tax planning, financial consulting, investment advisory and much more. However, it is important to ensure compliance with relevant laws and regulations. 

How can I start my own CPA practice in India?

Begin with a solid business plan, choose a legal structure, secure an office space, and invest in necessary technology. Comply with local regulations, obtain professional liability insurance, and establish clear client contracts. Market your services, build a client base through networking, and provide excellent service for client retention. Stay updated with industry trends and adapt as needed for success.