Licensure in Minnesota requires candidates meet qualifications in Education, Examination, and Experience—the "3 Es" of licensure. Once the requirements are met, individuals may apply to the Board for a license (CPA) or registration (RAP).
See below for more information on these requirements, both for CPA licensure and for RAP registration.CPA Licensure RAP Registration Temporary Military Certificate (CPA)
Applicants should note that there are differences between the minimum education requirements to sit for the CPA Exam and the final requirements for licensure:
See MN Rules 1105.1500 and MN Statutes 326A.03 Subd. 3 for specifics, as options exist, depending upon where you received your education and if it is a bachelor's or a graduate degree.
For the purposes of illustration: One minimum requirement to sit for the CPA exam is a BA from an institution accredited by a regional or national accrediting agency recognized by the US Department of Education that includes or is supplemented by at least 24 semester hours of accounting at the intermediate or advanced (so, not introductory) level from a similarly accredited institution. Those accounting courses must be dedicated to each of the following subjects: financial accounting, auditing, taxation, and management accounting.
You will need to provide official transcripts to confirm your education as part of the exam application process (see information below).
Note: If you earned your education outside the US, you will need to have your education evaluated prior to sitting for the exam. The Minnesota Board requires the evaluation be done by either one of these two authorized services:NASBA International Evaluation Services Educational Credential Evaluators
Examination applications can be submitted to NASBA before a student graduates, if the student meets the requirements in MN Statute 326A.03, Subd. 3a and MN Rules 1105.1650.
See MN Rules 1105.2900 and MN Statutes 326A.03 Subd. 6 for specifics, as options exist, depending upon where you received your education and if it is a bachelor's or a graduate degree.
For the purposes of illustration: If you met the minimum requirement described above to sit for the exam, you would need a total of 150 semester hours from an accredited institution that includes a total of 48 hours in business-related subjects and intermediate or higher accounting coursework (counting the 24 originally earned to sit for the exam).
Note: The Board cannot advise individuals where to earn their education beyond what is already specified in rules and statutes. Consult the US Department of Education Accreditation Database or speak to the accounting department chair or an academic advisor at your (prospective) institution if you have any concerns as to whether the institution is accredited and can offer you the coursework you need for eventual licensure.
The Board itself does not evaluate transcripts or advise on transcripts. Please consult the rules and statutes references above to determine if you have met the education requirements to sit for the exam and for eventual licensure.
NASBA (National Association of State Boards of Accountancy) does offer an optional Advisory Evaluation service for a fee to identify any academic deficiencies before you submit a first-time application for the CPA exam.
If you have been licensed for four or more years in another state, you do not need to meet the 150-hour education requirement if 1) you have passed the CPA exam and have four or more years of verified experience earned within ten years of your application to Minnesota, and 2) you can show 120 hours of CPE in the three-year period preceding your application date. See MN Statutes 326A.04 Subd. 3 or the application form instructions for more details.
If you answered "yes" to either of the questions above, you will still need to meet Minnesota's education and experience requirements for application (so please read those sections), but you apply as a "Non-Minnesota Exam Candidate" (even if you currently live in Minnesota). See details in the "Applying for Licensure" section of this page.
Applicants need to have passed all four parts of the Uniform CPA exam before they can be licensed. NASBA (National Association of State Boards of Accountancy) administers the exam for the State of Minnesota.
Applicants must meet eligibility requirements in order to sit for the exam as a Minnesota candidate. MN Statutes 326A.03 Subd. 3-7 and MN Rules 1105.1500-2400 describe these requirements, which are summarized below:
To sit for the CPA exam as a Minnesota candidate, applicants must
Minnesota exam candidates apply to NASBA rather than the Board office to sit for the exam. NASBA's website provides:
Call NASBA's CPA Exam Services: 800-272-3926 or apply online:CPA Exam Online Registration
The Uniform CPA Examination has been approved by the Department of Veterans Affairs as a certification test that veterans in any state can take and have the expense reimbursed up to $2000. Military spouses of active duty members are covered under the Department of Defense's Military Career Advancement Account (MyCAA) program for up to $4000 in financial assistance toward their education and testing.GI Bill
All candidates must also take and pass an ethics exam within two years preceding initial application for the certificate (see MN Statutes 326A.04 Subd. 12 and MN Rules 1105.1800 Subp. 2). The exam the Board currently accepts is the AICPA Professional Ethics Comprehensive Course "For Licensure." AICPA offers more than one Ethics Course/Exam. Be sure you select the one that says it is "For Licensure."
Once a candidate has successfully completed the Professional Ethics Exam, they should call AICPA to ask that they send the scores to the Minnesota Board.
All candidates for a Minnesota license must have one full year of experience. What is meant by "one full year" and what type of experience qualifies is defined in MN Rules 1105.2600.
Your experience must be verified by an Active status CPA with a valid certificate (as defined by MN Rules 1105.6550 Part A) or an unexpired Inactive CPA. That verifying CPA need to be licensed in the state in which you gained that experience, meet the definition in MN Rules referenced in this section, and be able to confirm the experience you report to the Board as part of the application process.
As soon as you have met the requirements above, you'll immediately want to begin your online application to the Board for licensure.
The online system gives you 24/7 access to the status of your application, including what documents the Board has received and when your application is complete and ready for Board review.
If you sit for the exam as a Minnesota candidate, you need to keep in mind a deadline you have for applying to the Board. Once you have completed all the requirements for application—education, examination, and experience—if you are working in public accounting or for the Legislative or State Auditor, you have 60 days to apply to the Board (send in application form and fee) or you will be in violation of MN Rules 1105.2500, items D and E.
Note: The deadline clock does not begin until all requirements are met. So if you don't yet have 150 hours of education or you don't yet have a full year of experience or if you haven't completed all four parts of the CPA Exam (or if you are not working in public accounting as described in MN Rules)—any one of these incomplete requirements means the clock has not yet started on this deadline.
Active or recently active military personnel and their spouses who hold a CPA license in good standing in another state may apply for expedited temporary licensure in Minnesota. Please see the application form for more information:Temporary Military Certificate (CPA) Application
To apply to be a Registered Accounting Professional, you must meet the education, examination, and experience requirements defined in MN Rules 1105.6600-6900.
After you have met the requirements above, you may apply to the Board for registration using the following form:Registered Accounting Practitioner (RAP) Application
Note: A wealth of information and explanation is available to you simply by downloading the application and reading through the instructions. We encourage you to do so.