California Board of Accountancy

Mission Statement

To protect consumers by ensuring only qualified licensees practice public accountancy in accordance with established professional standards.


Vision Statement

All consumers are well informed and receive quality accounting services from licensees they can trust.


Authority

Created by statute in 1901, the California Board of Accountancy's legal mandate is to regulate the accounting profession for the public interest by establishing and maintaining entry standards of qualification and conduct within the accounting profession, primarily through its authority to license.


In California, the accounting profession's licensed practitioners are the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and the Public Accountant (PA). The CBA currently regulates over 81,000 licensees, the largest group of licensed accounting professionals in the nation, including individuals, partnerships, and corporations.


By authority of the California Accountancy Act, the CBA:

  • Qualifies California candidates for the Uniform CPA Examination.
  • Certifies, licenses, and renews licenses of individual CPAs and PAs.
  • Registers CPA partnerships, PA partnerships, and corporations. Effective January 1, 1998, the Accountancy Act permits minority ownership of public accounting firms by non-licensees.
  • Receives and investigates complaints.
  • Takes enforcement action against licensees for violation of CBA statutes and regulations.
  • Monitors compliance with continuing education requirements.
  • Reviews the work products of CPAs, PAs, and CPA firms to ensure adherence to professional standards.

The California Board of Accountancy is unique in its authority to license and discipline not only individuals but also firms.