Certified Public Accountant
What is a CPA?
A CPA is a certified public accountant who is licensed by a state board of accountancy. To earn the prestige associated with the CPA license, you are required to demonstrate knowledge and competence by meeting high educational standards, passing the CPA exam and completing a specific amount of general accounting experience. The two most important aspects of becoming a CPA are passing the Uniform CPA Exam and meeting licensing requirements in the state where you want to practice.
The Value of a CPA
Certified Public Accountants (CPA) are innovative and strategic thinkers who are well respected for their integrity and commitment to excellence. They are dedicated to each client and work to satisfy their business and financial needs. CPAs provide a number of valuable and useful services to consumers, business owners, government agencies and nonprofit organizations. Their services range from helping an individual develop a personal financial plan to assisting a business owner with things like tax planning, financial statement analysis and understanding complex financial transactions for business decision-making. When you consult a CPA you are forming a business partnership with someone who values your success.
Professional Membership in VSCPA
In Virginia, CPAs who are committed to the profession generally belong to the Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants (VSCPA). Membership in the VSCPA is a mark of distinction shared by more than 12,000 CPAs in Virginia. It means the CPA you hire has opportunities to participate in education and training regarding business issues, accounting, taxation, information technology, ethics and other topics.
The CPA Difference: Education, Experience and Examination
When you hire a CPA, you can be confident they have met strict licensing and ethics requirements before receiving their certification. These requirements distinguish CPAs from other business and financial advisors. Typically, CPAs must pass a rigorous national exam and meet stringent experience requirements in addition to completing four to five years of study at a college or university. To maintain their licenses, CPAs pursue continuing professional education that keep them current with the latest business and technical issues. In Virginia, every CPA must take a class each year on professional ethics to satisfy continuing education requirements. When you work with a CPA, you can be assured that he or she has mastered a significant body of knowledge.