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Frequently Asked Questions

Below are responses to frequently asked questions regarding the examination and certification process to become a CPA in the State of New Hampshire.

These questions and answers are general in nature and are informational only. Each and every applicant for either exam or a certificate/license to practice as a Certified Public Accountant must meet in full all the laws and rules of the State of New Hampshire Board of Accountancy for examination and certification as a certified public accountant. This information is not intended to be all inclusive and you must apply for and be accepted to sit for the examination and must apply for and fulfill all the RSA's contained in RSA 309-B and fulfill all the applicable Administrative Rules which outline and define the certification requirements in order to obtain a certificate to practice public accounting in the state of New Hampshire. In order to obtain all the information needed to become certified in the State of New Hampshire you will need to review both the statutory requirements and rule requirements (RSA 309-B and Ac 100-500).

The New Hampshire Board of Accountancy offers the CPA exam; however the Board has contracted with National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) CPA Exam Services to approve and process the applications for the exam. NASBA will review and approve your education, process your application, send you the Notice to Schedule and will notify you of your grades. During the application process you may email CPA Exam Services at cpaes-nh@nasba.org with questions regarding the CPA exam. Upon completion of the CPA Exam and when you are ready to apply for certification you will then apply for the certificate and license to practice through the New Hampshire Board of Accountancy.

We do not require residency or social security numbers for non us citizens.

For additional information please consult the NASBA candidate bulletin.

New Hampshire is not a two-tier state. What this means is that when you pass the CPA exam you are not awarded a certificate, you only receive your grades, and verification that you have passed the CPA examination. In order to obtain an original certificate and license, as they are one in the same, you need: To have passed the Uniform CPA exam in accordance with RSA 309-B: 5 and the administrative rules; and Have obtained public accounting experience or governmental experience accordance with RSA 309: B:5, IX and or X and the Administrative Rules of the Board. For more information please review the Board's administrative rules.

Transferring of Examination Grades

When ever you transfer examination grades from a state or jurisdiction other than New Hampshire, to New Hampshire, you must meet what the New Hampshire's requirements were at the time you took the exam in the other state or jurisdiction.

For transfer of grades please email cpaes-nh@nasba.org or call 1-800-CPA-EXAM or 1-615-880-4250.

For verification of licensure, please contact Dawn Couture (email: dawn.couture@oplc.nh.gov or call 603-271-2219).

Exams and Certifications

What are the requirements to sit for the exam?

What kind of education verification do I need?

What courses are acceptable for the accounting credit requirement?

How do I apply for the exam?

How will I know if I have been approved to sit?

How do I arrange to sit?

What happens after I sit?

How do I pass the computerized exam?

How do I prepare for the exam?

How do I obtain a certificate and license to practice as a Certified Public Accountant?

What do I submit and how?

back to topWhat are the requirements to sit for the exam?

Ac 302.03 Educational Qualifications for CPA Examination. Pursuant to RSA 309-B:5, III (c) on or after July 1, 2014 applicants for the CPA examination required pursuant to RSA 310-B:5 and Ac 303 shall have 120 semester hours of college education including a baccalaureate degree conferred by a college or university accredited pursuant to Ac 302.02 (b). The degree shall include at least 30 semester hours of accounting courses which shall include coverage in financial accounting auditing, taxation, and management accounting and be supplemented by 24 semester hours of business courses other than accounting courses which includes, business law, business information systems, finance, professional ethics, business organizations, and economics.

back to topWhat kind of education verification do I need?

Ac 301.02 (d) (3) a. States that if your degree is from the United States an official transcript in accordance with 301.02 (3) (a) must be provided.

Ac 301.02 (d) (3) b. States that if your degree/s were earned from a foreign country, you will need to have the degree or degrees evaluated by an evaluation company approved by the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy.

You may find more information on the NASBA website. The evaluation must be a course by course evaluation and break down the number of accounting and business courses. If you are unsure if you meet the requirements, you may contact CPA Exam Services and they offer a pre-evaluation service. Go to the NASBA website, click on CPA Exam, click on the State of New Hampshire, click on first time application, then scroll down and choose Pre-Evaluation. This is not mandatory and is not required by the NH Board of Accountancy, but is a service offered by CPA Exam Services. The service has a minimal fee and they will pre-evaluate your education before the actual exam application process to ascertain if you qualify. The New Hampshire Board of Accountancy will not pre-evaluate your education.

The fee will not be applied to the exam cost. If you have a foreign degree and it has been evaluated by an acceptable evaluation company, you will request that the evaluation company send the evaluation to CPA Exam Services at NASBA in Tennessee. The address is on the bottom of the application for examination.

back to topWhat courses are acceptable for the accounting credit requirement?

A minimum of 30 semester hours in accounting which must include a course in each of the following: financial accounting, auditing, taxation and management accounting.

A minimum of 24 semester hours in business electives, other than accounting, which may include but is not limited to, business law, business information systems, finance, professional ethics, business organizations, and economics.

back to topHow do I apply for the exam?

The exam is computerized and you will arrange to sit for the exam through Prometric and may sit for the exam anytime the exam window is open and there is a seat available at the center you wish to use. You may physically sit anywhere in the United States that has an approved exam site. You may only sit once for each part in a two month window. Example: If you sit for BEC in January, you cannot sit for BEC in February of the same exam window.

The exam is open:

  • January & February
  • April & May
  • July & August
  • October & November

The exam is closed March, June, September and December for grading. In order to apply for the CPA Exam you must go to the NASBA website and click on "Exam" and then choose the exam you wish to apply for. Choose the State of New Hampshire from the map or the drop down menu.

Then choose whether you are a first time candidate or a re-exam candidate, if you are not sure click on both and review the descriptions of both and you should be able to determine which application to file. Either application will have instructions on how to apply and pay for the exam.

Please be aware that each time you apply for the parts of the examination you are required to pay an application fee. However, you should only apply for those parts of the exam that you are prepared to sit for in a six month period, as once you are approved and you receive your Notice to Schedule (NTS), the NTS expires 6 months from the date it is issued.

back to topHow will I know if I have been approved to sit?

Once you have submitted your education, application and fees, your information will be reviewed by CPA Exam Services to ascertain if you meet the New Hampshire education requirements. Upon approval to sit, CPA Exam services will either mail or email you your "Notice To Schedule" (NTS). This document is extremely important and must be brought to the exam site with you or you will not be allowed to sit. Please read it and make sure your name is correct. If it is not then contact CPA Exam Services immediately to obtain a new NTS.

back to topHow do I arrange to sit?

Upon receipt of your NTS you will have six months from the date of issuance of the NTS to sit for the exam part or parts you have applied for. You will contact Prometric and arrange for a seat at the exam site of your choice through the Prometric website. You should ensure you give yourself time to sit for any parts you register for.

If you do not sit within six months of the date on the NTS that NTS is invalid and cannot be used. If you have a hardship or medical situation that precluded you from sitting please contact CPA Exam Services immediately and request an extension. The extensions are given for hardship or medical reasons and are determined on a case by case basis and may require documentation.

We strongly recommend that you read the Candidate Bulletin located on the NASBA website under documents or publications and forms and take the candidate tutorial both located on the NASBA website, also you should visit This Way to CPA website.

back to topWhat happens after I sit?

After you have completed the exam part/s you have scheduled for, your exam/s are electronically submitted to the grading service. The grading service then transmits your grades to CPA Exam Services who will post them on the NASBA website. Your score is also either mailed to you hard copy or emailed to you based on your request.

back to topHow do I pass the computerized exam?

A candidate may sit for one part of the computerized exam at a time, or may choose to sit for two or three or four parts during a testing window, which is open every two months. If a candidate sits for the exam and passes a part/s then he or she has 18 months to complete the un-passed examination parts. The exam is open for two months, closes for one month, opens for two months, closes for one month, so on and so forth.

Please review Ac 303.02 CPA Examination Required at the end of this document.

back to topHow do I prepare for the exam?

This is a personal choice. There is no requirement for how you prepare for the exam. There are many different companies that offer preparatory courses and you will need to decide if you would benefit from taking one and which type of learning is best for you. If you are looking for preparatory courses you may want to use a search engine to obtain as many different choices as possible.

back to topHow do I obtain a certificate and license to practice as a Certified Public Accountant?

Refer to RSA 309-B:5 Qualifications for a Certificate as a Certified Public Accountant and Ac 302.04 CPA Certificate Applicant Accounting Experience.

back to topWhat do I submit and how?

When you download the instructions and the application, there are forms that need to be filed out and returned to NASBA. Visit the NASBA weebsite for more information.

Office of Professional Licensure and Certification
121 South Fruit Street |  Concord, NH 03301
Main Telephone: (603) 271-2152