How does CPA CPE/CPD work?

Updated: Apr 29

Once you are a fully graduated CPA, in order to keep your CPA status, you will need to continue to maintain knowledge in the industry.

In order to do this, all CPA/CA/ACCA accountants must undertake a certain number of CPD (also known as CPE) hours each year. This stands for Continuous Professional Development ('CPD') or Continuous Professional Education ('CPE').

How many CPD hours do I need?

Your formal CPD hours will vary depending on your designation.

  • For a CPA or CAANZ, of your 120 CPD hours each triennium (i.e. 3 years), 90 hours must be formal CPD. A minimum of 20 CPD hours must be completed in each year.

  • For an ACA, of your 90 CPD hours each triennium, 45 hours must be formal CPD. A minimum of 15 CPD hours must be completed each year.

  • For an AT, of your 60 CPD hours, 30 hours must be formal CPD. A minimum of 10 CPD hours must be completed each year.

  • If you are not working full-time your hours may be pro-rated.

This is visualised below (120 hours per triennium or 40 hours per year (straightlined)

What's not counted

Anything that does not directly improve your professional knowledge cannot be counted as CPD. Doing extensive, daily tasks or standard administration duties do not count as CPD hours.

What qualifies as informal CPD and how much do I need?

Informal CPD is also referred to as technical reading. You may record up to 10 informal hours per year, and up to 30 informal hours each triennium. If you are an approved SMSF auditor, 10 hours of technical reading needs to be in the area of SMSF auditing.

Your CPD record

Keeping a record of your CPD hours can benefit you in several ways. It is a great way to track your progress, and it can confirm your CPD activities to your current or prospective employer. You may also need to submit your records as part of a practice review, or to us, for CPD monitoring purposes.

What counts as CPD?

You can also enter CPD records from other providers such as the Institute Of Accounting or the CPA official store. You could also purchase one of our exam prep course and this would count as CPD as well.

Best of luck

Merit CPA

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