What is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA)?

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What is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA)?

Certified Public Accountant, abbreviated as CPA, is a trained, qualified, licensed and professional accountant, who is focused and committed to serving and protecting the public interest in matters accounting and finance. The title ‘certified public accountant’ refers to the professionals who have sat and passed the CPA examinations by the statutory exam bodies. The rigorous and meticulous training the CPA trainees undergo equips and prepares them for the professional role they will assume once they qualify. A  certified public accountant serves in the interest of the general public, and, therefore should have been trained, passed the required examinations and licensed to practice.

The training centers for the CPA should be vetted and certified by international approved and regulated organizations. There are statutory regulatory and licensing bodies in individual countries that are mandated with the training, offering examinations, regulating and keeping in check all CPA trainees and professionals in their countries.

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Qualifications of CPA

There are varying requirements for one to qualify as a certified public accountant, varying from state to state, and from country to country. Though there are different qualifications requirements for one to qualify as a CPA, the consensus is that in whatever state or country, a person should have the necessary qualifications that include a high school or college level pass. A person will also undergo rigorous training, in the certified and accredited statutory training center. The minimum set age by a majority of states and countries for one to start training as a CPA is 18 years.

The final set of qualifications is for the CPA trainee to sit and pass the set CPA examination, after which one with be registered and licensed to practice as a certified public accountant.

Role of a Certified Public Accountant

Although the part of a CPA relates to accounts and finances, a certified public accountant plays a broader role behind the scenes. The purpose of a certified public accountant includes but not limited to the following;

  • Monitor and maintain all financial related data and records in an organization
  • Reading and interpretation of the firm’s financial records and data
  • Filling financial reports and presenting them to the organization’s board as and when required
  • In charge of ensuring prompt and complete compliance with all federal and state legal requirements, including preparation and filing of the company’s tax returns
  • Offering professional advice in matters related to accounts and finance

Characteristics of a CPA

The job description of a certified public accountant requires one to be seen in detail, sharp and focused in meeting set obligations and goals. A good certified public accountant should have a keen eye to detail, practice and uphold the professional conduct of good accounting practices. The proper accounting practices involve being legally compliant, keeping and maintaining faultless financial records and information and detection and prevention of financial fraud and theft.

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Learn more about Ash CPA and how accounting services will benefit your business. Call  (617) 462-6651 or request an appointment online. You may also visit us at 945 Concord Street, Suite 100 Framingham, MA 01701.