Define: CPA

UK Accounting Glossary

Definition: CPA



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Full Definition of CPA


A CPA, the common acronym for Certified Public Accountant, is an accountant licensed by a state board to engage in public accounting. The requirements to become a CPA vary by state, but each CPA candidate must pass the Uniform CPA Examination and fulfil certain experience requirements. After gaining certification, a CPA is required to take continuing professional education courses to keep current on developments in the field. Both a CPA and a non-CPA can offer services in a wide range of accounting areas — such as tax preparation, forensic accounting, and estate planning — and often perform similar duties. Only a CPA, however, can express an opinion on whether the financial statements of a public company present fairly its financial position. Thus public companies commonly hire a CPA firm to prepare the annual 10-K required by the Securities and Exchange Commission This form provides a comprehensive overview of the company’s business and financial condition and includes audited financial statements.


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CPA. PayrollHeaven.com. Payroll & Accounting Heaven Ltd. https://payrollheaven.com/define/cpa/ (accessed: February 25, 2020).
American Psychological Association (APA):
CPA. PayrollHeaven.com. Retrieved February 25, 2020, from PayrollHeaven.com website: https://payrollheaven.com/define/cpa/

Definition Sources


Definitions for CPA are sourced/syndicated and enhanced from:

  • A Dictionary of Economics (Oxford Quick Reference)
  • BusinessDictionary.com
  • Oxford Dictionary Of Accounting
  • Oxford Dictionary Of Business & Management

This glossary post was last updated: 4th February 2020.