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Maryland (MD) CPA Continuing Education (CPE) Requirements

Listed below are some of the Maryland CPA CPE requirements that apply to online continuing education. BestCPE designs its courses to meet the credit hour requirement by the Maryland State Board of Public Accountancy. Please use the official rules from the Maryland State Board of Public Accountancy as the official documentation for any questions related to Maryland CPA CPE.

Subject matter that qualifies for CPE

Subject matter that qualifies as CPE ensures reasonable knowledge about the current practice of accountancy by certified public accountants to ensure a high standard of practice in the profession. Qualified subject matter can be presented through programs discussing the various specialized areas of the CPA profession. CPE can be earned through the following:

  • Professional development programs

  • Technical sessions of professional societies or chapters

  • College courses

  • Formal, organized, in-firm educational programs of certified public accountancy firms

  • Governmental seminars

  • Seminars or symposiums related to the practice of accountancy

Pertinent Fields of Study

The Board requires each licensee to earn four (4) hours of professional ethics as part of the minimum of 80 hours reported to qualify for license renewal. This is the only subject requirement for CPE. The Board accepts CPE courses in 23 subject fields of study. These fields of study include:

  • Accounting
  • Accounting (Governmental)
  • Auditing
  • Auditing (Governmental)
  • Administrative Practice
  • Social Environment of Business
  • Regulatory Ethics
  • Business Law
  • Business Management and Organization
  • Finance
  • Management Advisory Services
  • Marketing
  • Behavioral Ethics
  • Communications
  • Personal Development
  • Personnel/HR
  • Computer Science
  • Economics
  • Mathematics
  • Production
  • Specialized Knowledge and Applications
  • Statistics
  • Taxes

Please note: If a component in the above listed fields of study includes regulatory or behavioral ethics subject matter, the hour equivalent that reflects the percentage of time devoted to ethical subject matter must be documented on the sponsoring organization's attendance report or certificate of completion. The Board will not recognize as ethics CPE hours claimed if supporting documentation is not noted on attendance forms or course completion certificates.

 

Self study courses

Currently, self study can be interactive or regular (self reading). The maximum CPE that can be earned per license period through self study is 60 hours for which no more that 40 hours can be earned in regular self study. Twenty hours of CPE must be earned through participation in a classroom.

CPE for Peer Review

A peer review shall qualify if conducted in accordance with the requirements of the Maryland Public Accountancy Act and relevant COMAR regulations. Only an individual in a firm that receives an unmodified peer review may receive credit. Continuing professional education credit can only be awarded to an individual who participates as a member of the engagement personnel in attendance at the exit conference for the peer review. The peer reviewer shall allocate a maximum of: 8 hours for a report review; 12 hours for an engagement review; and 16 hours for a system review.

CPE for published works

Licensees can earn CPE for authoring a published work in any of the 23 fields of study. A licensee receives 10 CPE hours for each published article. There is no limit to the number of published articles reported for CPE. A licensee may request that the Board award more than 10 CPE for an article by submitting the published work for review. Published works are considered the same as participation in classroom or seminar instruction.

CPE credit for seminar, college or university instruction.

Licensees can earn CPE credit for being an instructor for teaching subjects within 23 fields of study. At this time instructors may earn credit for course preparation time as well as presentation time. The earning rate is three (3) hours of CPE for each teaching hour. Example: two (2) hours for preparation time and one (1) hour for teaching. The CPE earnings rate for teaching a college or a university course is 15 hours for each semester hour credit and 10 hours for each quarter hour credit. The maximum CPE that can be earned during each license period for instruction is 40 hours.

Reporting continuing professional education (CPE)

Licensees are required to report on the renewal application the number of CPE hours they have earned. They are asked to indicate the exact number of CPE hours that they have completed during their current two-year license period. Licensees can report CPE that they have earned in the two years prior to the expiration date of their current license. For example, a licensee whose license period is January 2, 2007 and expires January 2, 2009 , can report any CPE earned between those two dates to qualify for renewal for the next two-year period through January 2, 2011 .

Recent licensees who are renewing their licenses for the first time do not have to report any CPE in order to qualify for their initial license renewal. If, however, the licensee has earned CPE during the first license period, the licensee may report it on the first renewal and it will be carried forward for use with the next immediate renewal. CPE earned in an individual's first license period that is not reported at the time of the first renewal is no longer valid and is ineligible to be reported as CPE earned at the time of the second renewal. All licensees must report at least 80 hours of qualifying CPE at the time of their second renewal.

CPE carried forward into the next license period

Licensees may currently carry forward up to 80 hours of qualifying CPE that can be applied to the next immediate license period. For example, a person who has no CPE carried forward and reports 175 CPE will have the CPE applied as follows: 80 CPE to renew the license and 80 CPE applied toward qualifying to renew the next immediate license. The 15 CPE hours in excess of 160 will not be counted and are not eligible to be used in future renewal applications.

CPE credits are subject to audit

When a licensee submits a license renewal, the licensee affirms, under penalty of perjury, that the information contained in the application is true and correct to the best of their knowledge, information, and belief. It is extremely important that licensees accurately report CPE earned when renewing a license. The Board regularly audits CPE reported in conjunction with license renewals.

When a licensee's application is chosen for audit, the licensee must submit documentation of each CPE course taken including a brief description of the course, dates earned or attended, completion certification, and the name and background of the course presenter (if applicable).

The Board does not view favorably misrepresentation of any type on applications. Any individual who cannot provide documentation of CPE reported on a renewal application is subject to disciplinary action by the Board. Disciplinary action could include a reprimand, license suspension or revocation, and or a fine.

What to do if you do not have enough CPE to renew as an active licensee

If you do not have a total of 80 CPE hours to qualify for license renewal, there is an alternative. You can change your status to inactive on the renewal application. Your license will remain on inactive status until such time as you can report 80 hours of qualifying CPE. To reinstate your license from inactive to active you can use the Board's Activation/Deactivation feature.

PLEASE NOTE: Maryland CPA licenses are issued for a fixed two-year period that is based upon the date of your initial licensure. * If you reactivate your license any time between the beginning date and end date of the license period, the CPE that you reported to reactivate your license cannot be used for the next renewal. You will have to earn an additional 80 CPE hours for the next renewal. Of course, if you report an excess of 80 hours of CPE at the time of license reactivation, the CPE hours in excess of 80 can be applied to your next immediate renewal.

CPE required for reinstatement of an expired license

If your license has expired and you want to reinstate your license, only CPE that you have earned in the two years immediately preceding the date of your application for reinstatement qualifies as acceptable CPE.

PLEASE NOTE: Maryland CPA licenses are issued for a fixed two-year period that is based upon the date of your initial licensure. * If you reactivate your license any time between the beginning date and end date of the license period, the CPE that you reported to reactivate your license cannot be used for the next renewal. You will have to earn an additional 80 CPE hours for the next renewal. Of course, if you report an excess of 80 hours of CPE at the time of license reactivation, the CPE hours in excess of 80 can be applied to your next immediate renewal.


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