MO CPE Requirements


CPE Standards & Rules

New CPE Requirements - Effective 2020

The Missouri State Board of Accountancy amended accountancy rule, effective starting in 2020. These changes can be found in Missouri Code of State Regulations Chapter 4 (specifically 20 CSR 2010-4.010 through 20 CSR 2010-4.041), and include:

  • As of Jan. 1, 2020, a licensee shall complete a minimum of 40 CPE hours a year, including two hours of ethics.
  • Beginning Jan. 1, 2021, licensees in good standing will be granted a 60-day grace period (until March 1) for any CPE shortage.
  • Upon audit, if the state board disallows any of a licensee's course hours, they will have 30 days to obtain qualifying CPE.

In addition, the new rules include clarification on the process to allow your license to go inactive without triggering disciplinary proceedings. Click here to learn more.

(For the years prior to 2020, the standards required at least 120 hours of CPE over the past three years, including six hours of ethics CPE per reporting cycle, with a minimum of 20 hours each year.)

As the end of each year approaches, MOCPA reminds all Missouri CPAs to take a few minutes to make sure you are up to date with your CPE requirements. It is critical that all of your CPE is properly accounted for and documented. The Missouri State Board of Accountancy does CPE audits on a random, but continuous basis.

MOCPA conveniently offers transcripts to its members, which automatically list all CPE taken with MOCPA. (You may also add in CPE taken from other sources.) Click here to view your transcript.

With the passage of the Missouri Uniform Accountancy Act (UAA) in 2001, continuing professional education (CPE) became an official requirement for all licensed CPAs. The Missouri UAA requires that to maintain a license, a CPA whether in public practice, industry, education, or government must take CPE. This law took effect August 28, 2001.

In January 2002, the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) and the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) jointly announced a new Statement on Standards of Continuing Professional Education Programs (Standards) for CPE. It became the role of each state’s board of accountancy to decide whether to adopt these new Standards.

As a result, the Missouri State Board of Accountancy revised Chapter 4 (Continuing Education Requirements) of its accountancy rules, and the board adopted the new CPE Standards. The CPE standards were updated numerous times, with significant changes taking effect in 2004, 2012 and 2020.

Prominent items to note in the CPE Standards include:

  • Half credit hours (25 minutes) may be counted after the first 50 minutes have been earned
  • 100 percent of CPE may be taken as self-study
  • Independent study under a CPE program sponsor qualifies for credit

To read the full current CPE Standards, please click here.

If you have questions regarding your CPA license or CPE requirements, please contact the Missouri State Board of Accountancy at (573) 751-0012.


Governmental Auditors

Effective June 30, 2005, auditors performing work under generally accepted government auditing standards (GAGAS) should complete every two years:

  • At least 80 hours of CPE that directly enhances the auditors’ professional proficiency to perform audits or attestation engagements, with a minimum of 20 hours in any one year of the two-year period
  • At least 24 of the 80 hours of CPE should be in subjects directly related to the government auditing, the government environment, or the specific environment in which the audited entity operates

EXCEPTION: Auditors performing work under GAGAS who are only involved in performing field work, but are not involved in planning, directing or reporting on the audit or attestation engagement, and who charge less than 20 percent of their time annually to GAGAS audits and attestation engagements, should complete every two years:

At least 24 hours of CPE in subjects and topics directly related to the government auditing, the government environment, or the specific environment in which the audited entity operates, but are exempt from the remainder of the 80-hour CPE requirement

Effective January 1, 2004, the GAO has deleted taxation from the list of subjects that always satisfy the 80-hours every two years requirement. There are a few exceptions to the rule.

We advise members to closely read the GAO’s website for complete, up-to-date information: www.gao.gov.


American Institute of CPAs (AICPA)

To be eligible for membership in the AICPA:

From January 1, 2001 forward and for each three-year reporting period thereafter, all AICPA members shall complete 120 hours or its equivalent, of continuing professional education. Click here for the AICPA website.


Missouri State Board of Accountancy

As a condition for renewing a permit to practice, as of Jan. 1, 2020, a licensee shall complete a minimum of 40 CPE hours a year, including two hours of ethics. Beginning Jan. 1, 2021, licensees in good standing will be granted a 60-day grace period (until March 1) for any CPE shortage. Upon audit, if the state board disallows any of a licensee's course hours, they will have 30 days to obtain qualifying CPE.

Applicants applying for their initial permit to practice in Missouri are not required to complete continuing education courses to receive their initial permits.

Applicants for renewal of a license shall attest on an application provided by the board that they have met the requirements for participation in a program of continuous learning as set forth by the Board or contained in the Statement on Standards for Continuing Professional Education (CPE) Programs jointly approved by the NASBA and the AICPA. Responsibility for documenting the acceptability of the program and the validity of the credits rests with the applicant who should retain such documentation for a period of five years following completion of each learning activity.

To receive a complete set of these rules call the Missouri State Board of Accountancy at (573) 751-0012 or click here.

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