and Enrolled Agents
New Mexico (NM) CPA Continuing Education (CPE)
The New Mexico State Board of Public Accountancy does not endorse or pre-approve CPE courses or require registration by individual providers of CPE. Listed below are some of the New Mexico CPA CPE requirements that apply to online continuing education. BestCPE designs its courses to meet the credit hour requirement by the New Mexico State Board of Public Accountancy. Please use the official rules from the New Mexico State Board of Public Accountancy as the official documentation for any questions related to New Mexico CPA CPE.
New Mexico Continuing Professional Education Requirements
A. The following requirements of continuing professional education apply to certificate/license renewals and reinstatements pursuant to Sections 9E and 12A of the act. An applicant for certificate/license renewal shall show completion of no less than 120 clock hours of CPE, complying with these rules during the 36-month period ending on the last day of the certificate/license holder's birth month.
(1) Any applicant seeking a license/certificate or renewal of an existing license shall demonstrate participation in a program of learning meeting the standards set forth in the statement on standards for continuing professional education (CPE) programs jointly approved by NASBA and AICPA or standards deemed comparable by the board.
(2) Each person holding an active CPA certificate/license issued by the board shall show completion of no less than 120 hours of continuing professional education complying with these rules during the preceding 36-month period ending on the last day of the certificate/license holder's birth month, with a minimum of 20 hours completed in each year. For any CPE reporting period which begins on or after January 1, 2010, continuing professional education must include a minimum of 4 hours of ethics education during the 36-month period after January 1, 2010. Licensees shall report CPE completion on board prescribed forms including a signed statement indicating they have met the requirements for participation in the CPE program set forth in board rules.
(3) The board may, at its discretion, accept a sworn affidavit as evidence of certificate/license holder compliance with CPE requirements in support of renewal applications in lieu of documented evidence of such. Reciprocity and reinstatement applications shall require documented evidence of compliance with CPE provisions.
(4) Deadline for receipt of license renewal applications and supporting CPE reports or affidavits is no later than the last day of the certificate/license holder's birth month. Renewal applications and supporting CPE affidavits or reports shall be postmarked or hand-delivered no later than the renewal deadline date or the next business day if the deadline date falls on a weekend or holiday.
(5) In the event that a renewal applicant has not completed the requisite CPE by the renewal deadline, he shall provide a written explanation for failure to complete CPE; request an extension for completion of the required CPE; and shall provide a written plan of action to remediate the deficiency.
(a) The extension request and action plan shall accompany the renewal application.
(b) The provisions of the action plan shall be executed within 60 days of the expiration date of the license.
(c) The board reserves the right not to approve a plan of action or grant an extension.
(d) Although a plan of action may be approved immediately upon receipt, the board reserves the right to levy a fine at a later date for late CPE of $10.00 per day not to exceed $1,000.
(e) The board may waive this fine for good cause.
(f) If all CPE requirements are not met within 90 days beyond the expiration date of the license, the license shall be subject to cancellation.
(6) Renewal applications and CPE reports received after prescribed deadlines shall include prescribed delinquency fees.
(7) Applications will not be considered complete without satisfactory evidence to the board that the applicant has complied with the CPE requirements of Sections 9E and 12A of the act and of these rules.
(8) Reinstatement applicants whose certificates/licenses have lapsed shall provide documented evidence of completion of 40 hours of CPE for each year the certificate/license was expired, not to exceed 200 hours. If the license was expired for longer than 36 months, at least 120 of the hours must have been earned within the preceding 36 months. For any post-2009 year for which the certificate/license was expired, the continuing professional education must include a minimum of 4 hours of ethics education during the 36 months preceding reinstatement.
(a) The length of expiration shall be calculated from the date the license expired to the date the application for reinstatement was received by the board office.
(b) If the license was expired for less than one year, documented evidence of 40 hours of CPE earned within the 12 months immediately preceding the date of application for reinstatement must be provided.
(c) If the license was expired for longer than one year, for the purpose of determining the number of CPE hours required, the length of expiration shall be rounded down to the last full year if the partial year was less than six months and rounded up to the next full year if the partial year was more than six months.
B. Exemption from CPE requirements through change of certificate/license status between inactive/retired and active status.
(1) Pursuant to Section 9E of the act, the board may grant an exception to CPE requirements for certificate holders who do not provide services to the public. Public means any private or public corporate or governmental entity or individual. An individual who holds an inactive certificate/license is prohibited from practicing public accounting and may only use the CPA-inactive designation if they are not offering accounting, tax, tax consulting, management advisory, or similar services either in New Mexico or in another state or country. Persons desiring exemption from CPE rules requirements may request to change from "active" to "inactive" or "retired" certificate/license status, provided that they:
(a) complete board-prescribed change-of-status forms and remit related fees;
(b) not practice public accountancy as defined in Section 3M of the act; public accountancy means the performance of one or more kinds of services involving accounting or auditing skills, including the issuance of reports on financial statements, the performance of one or more kinds of management, financial advisory or consulting services, the preparation of tax returns or the furnishing of advice on tax matters; and
(c) place the word "inactive" or "retired" adjacent to their CPA or RPA title on a business card, letterhead or other documents or devices, except for a board-issued certificate.
(2) Persons requesting to change from "inactive" or "retired" to "active" certificate/license status shall:
(a)complete board-prescribed change-of-status forms and remit related fees; and
(b) provide documented evidence of 40 hours of CPE for each year the certificate/license was inactive, not to exceed 200 hours; if the license was inactive for longer than 36 months, at least 120 of the hours must have been earned within the preceding 36 months.
(3) The effective date of this provision shall be January 1, 2007 . An individual who holds an inactive certificate/license as of January 1, 2006 and expects to be subject to the provisions of this rule shall be permitted to obtain an active certificate/license between January 1, 2006 and December 31, 2006 provided they:
(a) complete board-prescribed change-of-status forms and remit related fees; and
(b) provide documented evidence of 40 hours of CPE earned between January 1, 2005 and December 31, 2006 or complete 120 hours of CPE within the three-year period immediately prior to the date of application for active status, provided that the application is received by the board no later than December 31, 2006 .
(4) An individual who obtains an active certificate/license during this transitional period of January 1, 2006 to December 31, 2006 shall not be subject to the provisions of sub-paragraph (b) of paragraph (2) above.
C. Hardship exceptions: The board may make exceptions to CPE requirements for reason of individual hardship including health, military service, foreign country residence, or other good cause. Requests for such exceptions shall be subject to board approval and presented in writing to the board. Requests shall include such supporting information and documentation as the board deems necessary to substantiate and evaluate the basis of the exception request.
D. Programs qualifying for CPE credit: A program qualifies as acceptable CPE for purposes of Sections 9E and 12A of the act and these rules if it is a learning program contributing to growth in professional knowledge and competence of a licensee. The program must meet the minimum standards of quality of development, presentation, measurement, and reporting of credits set forth in the statement on standards for continuing professional education programs jointly approved by NASBA and AICPA, by accounting societies recognized by the board, or such other standards deemed acceptable to the board.
(1) The following standards will be used to measure the hours of credit to be given for acceptable CPE programs completed by individual applicants:
(a) an hour is considered to be a 50-minute period of instruction;
(b) a full 1-day program will be considered to equal 8 hours;
(c) only class hours or the equivalent (and not student hours devoted to preparation) will be counted;
(d) one-half credit increments are permitted after the first credit has been earned in a given learning activity;
(e) for reporting periods on or after January 1, 2010, acceptable ethics topics may include, but are not limited to, instruction focusing on the AICPA code of professional conduct, the New Mexico occupational and professional licensing code of professional conduct applicable to certified public accountants, Treasury Circular 230, malpractice avoidance, organization ethics, moral reasoning, and the duties of the CPA to the public, clients, and colleagues; ethics hours may be earned as part of any professional development program otherwise qualifying under this rule, provided the ethics content and the time devoted to such content are separately identifiable on the program agenda.
(2) Service as a lecturer, discussion leader, or speaker at continuing education programs or as a university professor/instructor (graduate or undergraduate levels) will be counted to the extent that it contributes to the applicant's professional competence.
(3) Credit as a lecturer, discussion leader, speaker, or university professor/instructor may be allowed for any meeting or session provided that the session would meet the continuing education requirements of those attending.
(4) Credit allowed as a lecturer, discussion leader, speaker or university professor/instructor will be on the basis of 2 hours for subject preparation for each hour of teaching and 1 hour for each hour of presentation. Credit for subject preparation may only be claimed once for the same presentation.
(5) Credit may be allowed for published articles and books provided they contribute to the professional competence of the applicant. The board will determine the amount of credit awarded.
(6) Credit allowed under provisions for a lecturer, discussion leader, speaker at continuing education programs, or university professor/instructor or credit for published articles and books may not exceed one half of an individual's CPE requirement for a 3-year reporting period (shall not exceed 60 hours of CPE credit during a 3-year reporting period).
(7) For a continuing education program to qualify under this rule, the following standards must be met:
(a) an outline of the program is prepared in advance and preserved;
(b) the program is at least 1 hour in length;
(c) a qualified instructor conducts the program; and
(d) a record of registration or attendance is maintained.
(8) The following programs are deemed to qualify, provided the above are met:
(a) professional development programs of recognized national and state accounting organizations;
(b) technical sessions at meetings of recognized national and state accounting organizations and their chapters; and
(c) no more than 4 hours CPE annually may be earned for board meeting attendance.
(9) University or college graduate-level courses taken for academic credit are accepted. Excluded are those courses used to qualify for taking the CPA exam. Each semester hour of credit shall equal 15 hours toward the requirement. A quarter hour credit shall equal 10 hours.
(10) Non-credit short courses - each class hour shall equal 1 hour toward the requirement and may include the following:
(a) formal, organized in-firm educational programs;
(b) programs of other accounting, industrial, and professional organizations recognized by the board in subject areas acceptable to the board;
(c) formal correspondence or other individual study programs which require registration and provide evidence of satisfactory completion will qualify with the amount of credit to be determined by the board.
(11) The board will allow up to a total of 24 hours of CPE credits for firm peer review program participation. Hours may be earned and allocated in the calendar year of the acceptance letter for the firm's CPAs participating in the peer review.
(a) Firms having an engagement or report peer review will be allowed up to 12 hours of CPE credits.
(b) Firms having a system peer review will be allowed up to 24 hours of CPE credits.
(c) Firms having a system peer review at a location other than the firm's office shall be considered an off-site peer review and will be allowed up to 12 hours of CPE credits.
(d) The firm will report to the board the peer review CPE credit allocation listing individual firm CPAs and the number of credits allotted to each CPA. Individual CPAs receiving credit based upon a firm's report to the board may submit firm-reported hours in their annual CPA report forms to the board. If CPE credits will not be used, no firm report will be necessary.
(12) The board may look to recognized state or national accounting organizations for assistance in interpreting the acceptability of the credit to be allowed for individual courses. The board will accept programs meeting the standards set forth in the NASBA CPE registry, AICPA guidelines, NASBA quality assurance service, or such other programs deemed acceptable to the board.
(13) For each 3-year reporting period, at least 96 of the hours reported shall be courses, programs or seminars whose content is in technical subjects such as audit; attestation; financial reporting; tax, management consulting; financial advisory or consulting; and other areas acceptable to the board as directly related to the professional competence of the individual.
(14) Effective for CPE reporting periods ending on or after July 31, 2007, for each 3-year reporting period, at least 24 of the hours reported shall not include CPE sponsored by the licensee's firm, agency, company, or organization but may include all methods of CPE delivery, provided that each hour meets the standards specified in paragraphs (1) through (10) of this subsection .
(15) For each 3-year reporting period, credit will be allowed once for any single course, program or seminar unless the individual can demonstrate that the content of such course, program or seminar was subject to substantive technical changes during the reporting period.
E. Programs not qualifying for CPE:
(1) CPA examination review or “cram” courses;
(2) industrial development, community enhancement, political study groups or similar courses, programs or seminars;
(3) courses, programs or seminars that are generally for the purpose of learning a foreign language;
(4) partner, shareholder or member meetings, business meetings, committee service, and social functions unless they are structured as formal programs of learning adhering to the standards prescribed in this rule.
F. Continuing professional education records requirements: When applications to the board require evidence of CPE, the applicants shall maintain such records necessary to demonstrate evidence of compliance with requirements of this rule.
(1) Reinstatement and reciprocity applicants shall file with their applications a signed report form and statement of the CPE credit claimed. For each course claimed, the report shall show the sponsoring organization, location of program, title of program or description of content, the dates attended, and the hours claimed.
(2) Responsibility for documenting program acceptability and validity of credits rests with the licensee and CPE sponsor. Such documentation should be retained for a period of 5 years after program completion and at minimum shall consist of the following:
(a) copy of the outline prepared by the course sponsor along with the information required for a program to qualify as acceptable CPE as specified in this rule; or
(b) for courses taken for scholastic credit in accredited universities and colleges, a transcript reflecting completion of the course. For non-credit courses taken, a statement of the hours of attendance, signed by the instructor, is required.
(3) Institutional documentation of completion is required for formal, individual self-study/correspondence programs.
(4) The board may verify CPE reporting information from applicants at its discretion. Certificate holders/licensees or prospective certificate holders/licensees are required to provide supporting documentation and/or or access to such records and documentation as necessary to substantiate validity of CPE hours claimed. Certificate holders/licensees are required to maintain documentation to support CPE hours claimed for a period of 5 years after course completion/CPE reporting. Should the board exercise its discretion to accept an affidavit in lieu of a CPE report, the board shall audit certificate/license holder CPE rules compliance of no less than 10 percent of active CPA/RPA licensees annually.
(5) In cases where the board determines requirements have not been met, the board may grant an additional period of time in which CPE compliance deficiencies may be removed. Fraudulent reporting is a basis for disciplinary action.
(6) An individual who has submitted a sworn affidavit on their renewal application as evidence of compliance with CPE requirements and is found, as the result of a random audit, not to be in compliance will be subject to a minimum $250.00 fine and any other penalties deemed appropriate by the board as permitted by Section 20B of the act.
(7) The sponsor of a continuing education program is required to maintain an outline of the program and attendance/registration records for a period of 5 years after program completion.
(8) The board may, at its discretion, examine certificate holder/licensee or CPE sponsor documentation to evaluate program compliance with board rules. Non-compliance with established standards may result in denial of CPE credit for non-compliant programs and may be a basis for disciplinary action by the board for fraudulent documentation and representation by a CPE sponsor or certificate holder/licensee of a knowingly non-compliant CPE program.
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