How to Become a CPA in Illinois

If you want to be a CPA in Illinois, it is important to follow the proper procedures to get your license. In order to ensure that CPAs in Illinois are qualified, there are state requirements to practice. There are three components of becoming a practicing CPA in Illinois: education, certification and experience.


In Illinois, CPAs are required to hold a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree to practice. Undergraduate programs in Accounting at accredited colleges and universities will give you the educational foundation you need to be an effective CPA.

A degree program offers classes in financial accounting, auditing and tax law. The coursework prepares students to understand the many aspects of accounting so they can work as accountants in a business setting or to help people file their taxes each year.


After earning your degree, you will need to become certified. In order to become a licensed CPA, you will need to take and pass the licensing exam, which is called the Uniform CPA Examination.

In order to sit for the exam, you will have to send a request and fee, including your final transcripts, to the Illinois Board of Examiners. You will receive notification of when you can take the test once your request has been processed.

After you receive your exam scores, you will need to take a course on professional ethics and register your exam scores with the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Registration.


In order to receive your CPA license, you will need to gain at least one year’s experience as an accountant after registering your exam scores and passing the ethics course with at least a ninety percent score. After that year, you can send an application packet to the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Registration. A year of working prior to licensing gives you hands-on experience as an accountant, taking what you learn in the classroom into the real world.

Becoming licensed as a CPA in Illinois is not a fast process, but by going through each step the right way, you can be sure to have the educational foundation, experience and legal recognition you need to be an effective, successful CPA in Illinois.