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Photo by Phineas H

It just got a bit easier for CPAs to do their jobs, and more help may be on the way.

According to the Texas Society of CPAs, Texas has passed legislation that allows CPAs with substantially equivalent qualifications to practice in Texas without notice or license.  The law is effective on Sept. 1, 2007. Texas is the seventh state to adopt such mobility legislation; it joins Ohio, Indiana, Missouri, Tennessee, Wisconsin and Virginia. (Out-of-state CPA firms that perform audits on Texas companies still must have a Texas license.)

Mobility — or a lack thereof — has been a painful thorn in the profession’s side for some time now, so this is great news to practitioners everywhere. In a recent Journal of Accountancy article, Scott Voynich, chair of the AICPA’s Special Committee on Mobility, summarized the problem:

“Smaller firms don’t have the resources to be certain they are in compliance with every state’s requirements,” Voynich wrote. “They must either pass the costs on to their clients or absorb them in their overhead. Or, since many states require registration before even making a proposal to a prospective client, many small firms don’t even bother trying to get work in another state.

“Larger firms, which tend to have clients with complex corporate structures, cope by creating departments devoted exclusively to compliance with the various state rules and registrations. Even so, these firms still find it difficult to be certain that each CPA on each engagement is properly registered.”

More states, including Maryland, are poised to consider similar legislation in 2008, so stay tuned. In meantime, check out the mobility rules in other states and other mobility resources.

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