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California Board of Accountancy

Unable to Find a Licensee on License Lookup?

What happens if you are unable to find the CPA or Accounting Firm you are searching for?

If you use the License Lookup feature and there are no results produced, this could be due to several reasons:

  • The name is misspelled – try to search for different variations of the spelling of the name
  • Confirm you are searching for a CPA or Accounting Firm – there are other entities who can provide tax services that are not CPAs. Those include enrolled agents, individuals registered with the California Tax Education Council, and attorneys.
  • Broaden your search – if you are searching for an individual in a particular city, consider eliminating the city from your search. It is possible the individual has a mailing address registered with the CBA that is not the physical office location.
  • Ask the individual for their license number to eliminate any issues with name searches.
  • If you are searching with a license number, use only the numbers and not the “CPA”, “COR, or “PAR” before the number.

There are also provisions to allow out-of-state licensees to practice in California without obtaining a license. There are specific provisions that individuals must meet and restrictions regarding services and advertising. Please review our practice privilege handbook for additional information.

If you are unable to locate the individual as a licensee of the CBA and they have advertised or held themselves out as a CPA, it is possible the individual may be engaging in unlicensed activity. To notify the CBA regarding this activity, please visit the resources and forms on Reporting Unlicensed Activity.

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