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The Board of Accountancy is an autonomous board that is responsible for the administration of the licensing of certified public accountants ("CPA"), public accountants ("PA") and their practice units (firms).

The Board investigates complaints from the general public in the areas of licensing addressed above to determine whether the conduct of assigned licenses complies with the statutory and regulatory provisions under the Board’s juristiction and if disiplinary action is appropriate.

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Frequently Asked Questions

When is a Rhode Island CPA firm practice unit permit required?

A Rhode Island CPA firm practice unit permit is only required if the firm has established a physical office location in Rhode Island. While a firm with CPAs practicing in Rhode Island that has not established a physical office location in Rhode Island does not need to obtain a Rhode Island practice unit permit, the firm is subject to the "no escape" provisions (service of process, disciplinary authority, etc.).

References: R.I. Gen. Laws 5-3.1-9(a); 5-3.1-7(g)(3).

When does an individual CPA practicing in Rhode Island who is licensed in a substantially equivalent state need an individual Rhode Island CPA permit?

See above regarding when a Rhode Island CPA firm practice unit permit is required. If the practice unit is a solo practitioner, the solo practitioner needs a Rhode Island individual CPA permit, regardless of any licensure in a substantially equivalent state. If the prace unit is an organized business entity, at least one partner, shareholder, or member of the the practice unit needs a Rhode Island individual CPA permit.

Other than those scenarios, any individual CPA who is licensed in a substatntially equivalent state can practice in Rhode Island without a Rhode Island individual CPA permit. An individual CPA who is not required to obtain a Rhode Island individual CPA permit may still choose to apply for a Rhode Island permit and firms may require or prefer it.

Please be advised that any CPA practicing in Rhode Island without a Rhode Island individual CPA permit in the above permitted scenarios is subject to the "no escape" provisions (service of process, disciplinary authority, etc.).

To determine whether a licensing jurisdiction is considerred substantially equivalent, please visit: NASBA Substantial Equivalency.

References: R.I. Gen. Laws 5-3.1-7(g); 5-3.1-9(b).