*As of October 28, 2022, the VBOA is no longer requiring the AICPA self-study Professional Ethics: AICPA’s Comprehensive Course (For Licensure) for licensees applying through substantial equivalency.
An individual who holds a license of another state or jurisdiction and meets the substantially equivalent requirements of the Code of Virginia § 54.1-4411, is not required to hold a Virginia license, provided that either of the following is true:
- The licensee provides services to the public and the principal place of business in which those services are provided is in another state or jurisdiction.
- The licensee does not provide services to the public.
To use the CPA title in Virginia, a licensee from another state or jurisdiction agrees to be subject to:
- Code of Virginia and VBOA regulations that apply to Virginia licensees.
- All disciplinary proceedings arising out of matters related to the use of the CPA title in Virginia.
- The authority of the VBOA to revoke or suspend the privilege to use the CPA title in Virginia and to impose penalties for violations of Code of Virginia statutes and regulations.
The VBOA considers a licensee from another state or jurisdiction to have met requirements for substantial equivalence if the education, CPA exam and experience requirements of the state or jurisdiction are substantially equivalent to those prescribed by the VBOA and the licensee has demonstrated meeting those requirements.
An individual from another state or jurisdiction agrees to cease using the CPA title in Virginia if no longer licensed.
A licensee in another state or jurisdiction may apply for an initial Virginia license under the substantially equivalent licensure requirements of Section 23 of the Uniform Accountancy Act. The licensee must confirm the CPA licensure requirements of the state or jurisdiction in which the license is held has been reviewed by the National Qualification Appraisal Service of the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy and determined to be substantially equivalent to the UAA.
The NQAS recognizes the following categories of substantially equivalent on the NASBA website.
For a state or jurisdiction that is listed as substantially equivalent:
- Create an online account to apply for licensure in Virginia.
- Request a Verification of Licensure from a substantially equivalent state or jurisdiction.
Substantially equivalent Virginia licensee in another state or jurisdiction
A licensee from Virginia in another state or jurisdiction under substantially equivalent statutes or regulations is subject to disciplinary action by the VBOA for an act or omission committed in that state or jurisdiction. The VBOA may investigate any complaint made to or by the board of accountancy related to the use of the CPA title in that state or jurisdiction.
Licensed in another country
The VBOA recognizes applicants for Virginia licensure who are members of professional bodies that have entered into mutual recognition agreements with the AICPA and NASBA.
Currently, agreements are in effect with:
- Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CAANZ)
- Chartered Accountants Ireland (CAI)
- CPA Australia
- CPA Canada (CPAC)
- Instituto Mexicano de Contadores Publicos (IMCP)
- Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS)
- South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA)
As of Oct. 1, 2022, the VBOA will no longer be accepting reciprocal license applications under the Hong Kong Institute of Certified Public Accountants (HKICPA) MRA. Applications will only be accepted if the IQEX has been applied for or completed under the Hong Kong MRA before Oct. 1, 2022.
A member of one of these professional bodies may apply for a Virginia CPA license by following these steps:
- Create an online account to apply for licensure.
- Read the International Qualifications Examination (IQEX) Candidate Guide for qualifications and how to schedule the IQEX.
- Pass the IQEX exam administered by NASBA and request NASBA send the IQEX exam score to the VBOA.
- Request the professional body provide verification of the applicant’s international credentials to the VBOA.
- Complete the Experience Verification Form and mail to the VBOA to verify experience qualifications.
- Verify the VBOA CPE requirements for initial licensure in Virginia. No CPE is required for initial licensure if obtained in the same calendar-year in which the applicant passed the IQEX exam. If the applicant has not held a CPA license of any other state and applies for a Virginia license after the end of the calendar-year in which the applicant passed the IQEX exam, CPE must be obtained prior to applying for a Virginia license.
The VBOA may cooperate and share information with appropriate authorities in other states or jurisdictions in regards to investigations or enforcement matters concerning violations of the Code of Virginia statutes and regulations and comparable statutes or regulations of other states and jurisdictions.