CPA License Renewal Information
CPA license renewals are completed using CBA Connect, which provides the convenience of submitting online renewal applications, address changes, and payments in one, simple-to-use application. Additionally, CBA Connect allows you to track continuing education (CE) as it is completed. Establish your CBA Connect account to ensure you receive timely information tailored specifically to your renewal cycle. Please visit connect.dca.ca.gov/cba to create your CBA Connect account. A paper renewal application will not be mailed.
Note: The email you sign up with will be your User ID. User IDs cannot be changed. The CBA recommends using a personal email to sign up for CBA Connect.
Use CBA Connect to track and report the required information (course title, course code, dates of completion, hours and provider name) for all CE courses completed within the two years preceding your license expiration date.
Renewal Fee and Payments
If you are renewing a license that expires after September 30, 2022 must submit the renewal fee of $280 with the completed license renewal application. If the payment is not received by the license expiration date, a delinquency fee of $140 will be assessed. If you are renewing a license that expired on or before September 30, 2022, you must submit the renewal fee of $250. If the payment was not received by the license expiration date, a delinquency fee of $125 will be assessed. The renewal fee may be paid with a Visa, MasterCard, or Discover credit/debit card.
CBA Connect with automatically send you a receipt for your renewal payment. If you need a duplicate copy, please login to your CBA Connect account and click on “Payment Process Confirmation Email” in the Notifications section.
Alternatively, you may login to your CBA Connect account and click on “Profile” at the top of the page. The receipt may be found in the Payment Detail section.
The CBA does not have the legal authority to waive the delinquency fee for non-receipt of a renewal notification. Additionally, unless proof of delivery can be established, the CBA does not have the legal authority to waive the delinquency fee for a payment that is not received by the CBA.
License Renewal Options
- Renew your license in an active status by submitting the completed license renewal application, including the license renewal fee, and documenting completion of the required CE.
- Renew your license in an inactive status by submitting the completed license renewal application with the license renewal fee. You are not required to complete CE if you renew your license in an inactive status; however, you cannot practice public accountancy while your license is in an inactive status. Additionally, when using the title certified public accountant or the CPA designation you must place the term “inactive” immediately after the designation or title.
- Allow your license to expire if you no longer intend to practice public accountancy. An expired license may be renewed up to five years after its expiration date with payment of all applicable fees. In order to renew active, the required CE must be completed.
- Apply for a retired status license if you have been a CPA for at least 20 years, with at least five years as an active CPA in the state of California. An application for a retired status license can be submitted at any time. There is a $75 fee to apply. It is recommended that you consider applying for retired status at least 90 days prior to your license expiration.
Please note that if your application for a retired status license is granted, it will be placed in retired status immediately. If you do not wish to have it placed in a retired status immediately, you should wait and apply approximately 30 days before your desired date.
Reporting Continuing Education
Use CBA Connect to track and report the required information (course title, course code, dates of completion, hours and provider name) for all CE courses completed within the two years preceding your license expiration date.There are two ways to enter CE information into CBA Connect:
You may upload your CE records into CBA Connect using the CBA-provided Excel CE Data File template. Your CE records must be in the format of the CBA-provided Excel CE Data File template to be acceptable.
The CBA recommends downloading the Excel CE Data File template at your earliest convenience and using it to track your CE during your two-year renewal cycle. Using the Excel CE Data File template throughout your renewal cycle will help ensure a quick and easy renewal process.
If your employer or CE provider tracks your CE, you may wish to ask if their existing CE tracking database can be exported into the CBA-provided Excel CE Data File template.
Video: How to Use the Excel CE Data File Template
- Enter the CE into CBA Connect manually. If you’re using the Excel CE Data File, you may manually add additional courses to CBA Connect.
Peer Review Reporting
Firms, including sole proprietorships, must report peer review information at the time of license renewal. As such, CPAs practicing as sole proprietors will be required to report to the CBA peer review information on the Peer Review Reporting Form (PR-1 Form) at the time of license renewal. Although not all sole proprietors are required to undergo peer review, all sole proprietors must report peer review information to the CBA by completing and submitting the PR-1 Form with their license renewal application.
If you are a licensee employed by an accounting firm, work for a non-accounting firm, employed by the government or are retired, you are not subject to the reporting requirement.
Renewal applications will be processed within 24 to 48 hours. If the CBA finds the renewal application deficient, or needs additional staff review, you will receive notification within your CBA Connect account. Please allow 24 to 48 hours for online payments to reflect as updated on the License Lookup page of the CBA website. Once the license renewal application and payment has been processed, you will be mailed a pocket identification card with the new license expiration date.
To change your address, phone number, or email of record, please create or log in to your CBA Connect account. Changes made through CBA Connect take effect immediately.
Once logged in to CBA Connect, click on ”Profile“ at the top of the page. To change an address, click on the edit button in the Mailing Address section. To change a phone number or email of record, click on the pencil icon located next to the item you wish to edit.
Note: You cannot change your user ID. The User ID is the email you signed up with. If you ; however, if you change your email you will receive your CBA Connect messages through the new email but your User ID will remain the email you initially signed up with.
Addresses of record are made available to the public (BPC section 27).
- Do I have to enter my CE into Connect one class at a time?
- What data is required on the Excel CE Data File template?
- Can I upload my CE to CBA Connect without Excel?
- I tried to upload my CE using the Excel CE Data File template but it’s not working.
- Can I upload more than one Excel CE Data File template?
- I uploaded my CE using the Excel template but there’s a course missing. Can I add it manually?
- I can’t link my license.
- I work in an Administrative Assistant/HR capacity and I’m in charge of renewal for all the CPAs in my firm. How do I do that with CBA Connect?
- I successfully logged into CBA Connect but I can’t renew my license.
- You are not yet due for renewal. Renewal cycles open 90 days prior to license expiration. A “Renew” button will appear on the dashboard when the renewal period opens.
- You are delinquent more than 20 months and need to renew for multiple cycles at once. Please contact the CBA at email@example.com or 916-561-1702 for a multi-cycle license renewal application.
- You are in retired status. Retired CPAs cannot renew though CBA Connect.
- You are trying to renew a firm or FNP license. Only CPAs can renew through CBA Connect.
- I took a course that covered two subject areas. How do I report that?
- How do I ensure I’m getting all the proper credit for my CE courses?
- I am a sole proprietor and required to submit a Peer Review Reporting Form but CBA Connect is not allowing me to upload it.
- I received a text/email that says I have a message in CBA Connect but I don’t see any messages.
- I filled out my application but CBA Connect isn’t letting me move to the payment tab.
Once in CBA Connect, you will click on “Upload CE Data File.” Follow the prompts to upload the Excel document with your CE records. Once completed, your CE records should appear in CBA Connect.
If you do not wish to use the Excel CE Data File template, the CBA recommends that you add your CE courses to Connect as you take them. CBA Connect provides you with a tool to check your CE progress at any time to ensure that you are meeting all CE requirements. Once logged in to CBA Connect, click on the “Summary” button in the CE box to view the breakdown of all uploaded CE.
If you are using the CBA-provided Excel CE Data File template file and there are errors, a red box will appear notifying you that a file will download to your computer. Please be sure your computer allows automatic downloads from CBA Connect and that the template file is not being blocked by a firewall. Open that file and look for any boxes that are red. A red box indicates that the field does not contain an acceptable value. For troubleshooting, please refer to the following validation rules:
|Column Letter||Column Name||Column Format||Acceptable Values|
|A||First Name||General||Any (alpha only)|
|B||Last Name||General||Any (alpha only)|
|C||License Type||General||CPA, PA|
|D||License Number||Number||Any (numeric only)|
|E||Name of Provider||Text||Any|
|G||Year||General||First Year; Second Year|
|H||Subject Area||General||Accounting and Attestation (A&A); Ethics; Fraud; Board-Approved Regulatory Review Course; Technical Subject Areas; Non-Technical Subject Areas; Preparation Engagement; Government|
|I||Approval Number||Text||Any (must begin with RR)
*This column is only for Regulatory Review. It must be left blank for non-Regulatory Review courses.
|J||Presentation Method||General||Live Presentation; Interactive Self-Study; Group Internet-based programs; Teaching: as an instructor, discussion leader or speaker; Author of published books, articles, CE program instruction materials, or questions for the CPA Exam|
|K||Date Completed||Date||Any (date format)|
|L||Hours Claimed||Number||Any (numeric only, must be in half-hour increments)|
Note: Group study without a qualified discussion leader does not qualify as acceptable CE.