Can you have an inactive CPA license forever in California as long as you pay the $120 renewal fee?


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Can you have an inactive CPA license forever in California as long as you pay the $120 renewal fee every two-year period? In California, if your license expires for five years, you need to retake the entire CPA exam. Can this be avoided by maintaining an inactive CPA license forever in California and paying the $120 renewal fee every two-year renewal period?
 

kirby

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Yes. But if you are not using the license, why not apply to the Calif Board of Acctcy folks to have the license placed in Retired status?. You pay a one time $75 and have to file paperwork every two years but then there is no $120 fee every two years had you been in "Inactive" status. If need be you can move from Retired status to Active in a way similar to moving from Inactive to Active.
 
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Yes. But if you are not using the license, why not apply to the Calif Board of Acctcy folks to have the license placed in Retired status?. You pay a one time $75 and have to file paperwork every two years but then there is no $120 fee every two years had you been in "Inactive" status. If need be you can move from Retired status to Active in a way similar to moving from Inactive to Active.
That's a great idea kirby! Are you sure that's the case in California?

If that were the case, why would anyone go inactive? It would just make sense to go retired because it's much cheaper and has the same requirements if you want to go back to active.
 

kirby

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Yes. I'm sure. Why go inactive vs retired? Well there's a fee to go retired and another to become active again. Also, if you use the CPA designation, then you have to use "CPA retired". So folks will then consider you retired for good.
 
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Yes. I'm sure. Why go inactive vs retired? Well there's a fee to go retired and another to become active again. Also, if you use the CPA designation, then you have to use "CPA retired". So folks will then consider you retired for good.
What's the fee for going from retired to active?

I saw that you said it's the same as going from inactive to active but I don't know what that is. I think it's $120 for every two year period that you've not remained active, but I'm pretty sure I'm off.
 

kirby

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Fee is $50 PLUS you have to do all the CPE, ethics, etc needed - same as if you went from inactive to active.
 
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Yes. But if you are not using the license, why not apply to the Calif Board of Acctcy folks to have the license placed in Retired status?. You pay a one time $75 and have to file paperwork every two years but then there is no $120 fee every two years had you been in "Inactive" status. If need be you can move from Retired status to Active in a way similar to moving from Inactive to Active.
I'm in California, and after doing some research online, it appears that you need to have had your license for at least 20 years to convert it to retired status.

Is there any way around this rule? I've only had my CPA license for about 12 years so I don't meet the requirements.
 
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