Examining the Benefits: Advantages of Adding a CPA Designation to Your CA Credentials


The US Certified Public Accountant or CPA USA is a coveted professional qualification in financial accounting. It offers the highest level of competence in taxation, finance, and accounting. A career as a certified US CPA in accounting is highly rewarding and opens up numerous opportunities. You can vertically scale up experience and job roles across various industries. Pursuing a CPA USA certification after obtaining a professional accounting certification like CA can enhance your career. It can boost your career in the right direction and provide a multitude of opportunities.
There are numerous benefits of transitioning from CA to CPA USA, as it enhances your experience in finance and accounting and widens your horizon of jobs. In this blog post, we will explain every advantage of CPA USA after obtaining CA so that you can understand how to progress in your career. First, let's take a look at the details of US CPA certification.

US CPA: Overview

The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) provides the US CPA certification to candidates who successfully clear the Uniform CPA exam. The Uniform CPA exam is jointly conducted by the AICPA along with NASBA (National Association of State Boards of Accountancy). Candidates who clear the Uniform CPA exam will be eligible to get the CPA License provided by the state boards. Thereby, they can then start practicing as professional US CPAs.
The US CPA is a standard accounting qualification and is accepted in the US along with other countries which accept the US CPA certification, including the big accounting firms and companies in India and abroad. The top advantage of CPA USA is that its scope is vast and extends to many different industries requiring the assistance and expertise of a public accountant.
Let's take a look at the different aspects of the US CPA course so that you can get an idea about how to start your journey toward becoming a Certified Public Accountant.

US CPA Exam Syllabus

The standard Uniform CPA exam, which is the qualifying exam for US CPA, is conducted by NASBA, and AICPA is a 4-hour exam that is divided into four sections, which are:
  1. Auditing and Attestation (AUD)
  2. Regulation (REG)
  3. Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR)
  4. Business Environment and Concepts (BEC)
Studying for the US CPA exam can be completed well within two years, and you can clear the exam in just one attempt. To begin your preparation, knowing the US CPA exam syllabus is important.
Auditing & Attestation (AUD)
  • Ethics, General Principles, and Professional Responsibilities
  • Conclusions and Reporting
  • Performing Further Procedures and Obtaining Evidence
  • Risk assessment, Response Development
Business Environment & Concepts (BEC)
  • Economic Concepts and Analysis
  • Financial Management
  • Operations Management
  • Corporate Governance
  • Information Technology
Financial Accounting & Reporting (FAR)
  • Financial Statement Accounts
  • Local and State Governments
  • Transactions
  • Financial Accounting
  • Standard-Setting, Conceptual Framework, and Financial Reporting
Regulation (REG)
  • Individual Federal Taxation
  • Professional Responsibilities, Ethics, and Federal Tax Procedures
  • Property Transaction Federal Taxation
  • Business Law
  • Entity Federal Taxation
As an Indian Chartered Accountant, you may find that many of the topics overlap with what you have already studied. This is why it becomes one of the advantages of CPA that it is easier for Indian CAs to study for the US CPA exam.
In the US CPA exam, the papers are based on task, written communication, and multiple-choice questions. Questions are set in testlet format, which contains a combination of the above three types of questions. There are written communication tasks in the BEC exam, which have a 15% weightage, with task-based questions having a 35% weightage. Every section contains MCQ-based questions of 50% weightage, and the rest of the papers are based on task-based questions.
Candidates must obtain at least 75% in the Uniform CPA exam to pass and be eligible for the CPA License.
Now, let's move on to our main topic: the advantages of CPA after CA. 

Benefits of CPA After CA

Global Recognition & Job Opportunities
The US CPA is globally recognized and accepted in many countries around the globe. This opens many doors to candidates eager to pursue CPA and work abroad. Candidates are equipped with the knowledge of IFRS and US GAAP, which are international standards of accounting skills required for enhancing competence and quality of expertise in finance and accounting. Even in India, there has been a growing demand for qualified accounting candidates to have knowledge of IFRS and US GAAP to comply with international standards.
  • Wider Knowledge
The US CPA curriculum also makes the candidates well-versed in various aspects of accounting with respect to the international point of view rather than just having an Indian perspective. The US CPA course is extensive and covers a wide range of topics that are studied in Indian CA, such as local and international law, taxation, analytics, auditing, evaluation, regulatory frameworks and procedures, ethics, planning, and management of finances.
  • Employment Opportunities
Comparing CA to CPA, the US CPA qualification makes candidates eligible for far more job roles and positions than Chartered Accountancy. They also enjoy international recognition and opportunities to pursue their career anywhere in India and outside. They can work in many of the biggest accounting firms, organizations, and multinational companies with greater salary opportunities. There has been a growing demand for qualified CPA individuals, so the future of CPA USA careers is also bright, with many possible new job openings in different sectors and organizations.
  • Time Factor
When talking about CA vs. CPA, the first thing that may come to mind is the length of time required to clear all three levels of CA, which is 5-7 years on average. On the other hand, it takes about 2-3 years on average to clear the CPA exam, but with ample preparation, it can be completed well within two years. The best part about the CPA course is that it can be pursued alongside any other professional or regular academic course, such as graduation or post-graduation. So if you are planning to pursue a CPA course after CA, you can already begin and possibly complete both together!
  • Salary Benefits of CPA USA
Regarding the question of CA vs. CPA salary, it can be safely said that the CPA certification imparts greater knowledge and skills. This offers the advantage of CPA that those certified candidates can earn more than their non-certified counterparts. Additionally, people with dual certification of CA and US CPA have shown greater earning potential than most others without these qualifications. Therefore, it is a safe bet to have a dual-degree approach as it is a worthy investment of time and money.
  • Licensure
The CA credentials don't provide licensure to qualified candidates, so they are not often eligible to work as tax experts at certain places. Another advantage of CPA USA is that AICPA provides the license to those candidates who get certified. This makes them eligible to undertake important job roles such as audit reports and signing tax returns. Alternatively, they can be a partner or owner of a public accounting firm, which a CA may not have the right to do.
These are the benefits of CPA and CA certification, which you can enjoy as a dual certification.


Q1. Is CPA difficult to pass in India?
The CPA exam is one of the most sought-after qualifying examinations for professional certification, but clearing it can only be managed in one attempt. With proper guidance and by following relevant and useful study material and taking ample mock tests, you can easily clear the CPA exam in one chance. If you study for the CPA exam with dedication and commitment, you can complete the syllabus well within one year.
Q2. What is the CPA syllabus in India?
The complete US CPA certification exam syllabus in India contains four sections enlisted below, covering most topics important in the field of financial accounting.
  • Auditing and Attestation (AUD)
  • Regulation (REG)
  • Financial Accounting and Reporting (FAR)
  • Business Environment and Concepts (BEC)
These four sections have further different topics which can be covered quickly and effectively with the help of an organized approach as per the guidance from the prep provider like NorthStar Academy.
Q3. What is the eligibility to become a CPA?
The AICPA requires certain eligibility prerequisites to be met to be able to apply for the US CPA certification exam and CPA licensure. These are:
  • Exam: Graduation + 1 year of Post Graduation
  • License: Post Graduation
In addition to these academic qualifications, the AICPA requires the candidates to have a minimum of 2000 hours of work experience, roughly equivalent to 2 years of work experience.
Q5. What are the tips to prepare for the CPA exam?
The first step towards an all-encompassing CPA exam preparation is to understand the syllabus and make a study plan and follow it religiously. Following relevant study material is also important to have proper preparation. You can enroll in a US CPA course to prepare for the CPA exam in India, where you can get proper guidance along with relevant study materials for your CPA preparation. Taking mock tests regularly and analyzing them is important for understanding and becoming comfortable with the exam pattern as well as being adept at time management.
Pursuing the US CPA qualification after CA is a worthy career choice to open yourself up to wider and better career opportunities in the field of financial accounting. You can pursue this certification in India by enrolling in a top CPA course from a reputed coaching institute for US CPAs. At NorthStar Academy, you can avail yourself of various exciting benefits like obtaining study guides from Becker. You can access recorded or online classes provided by the academy. Furthermore, you can receive guidance from expert mentors like M Irfat Sir, who has helped over 15000 students qualify for professional certification examinations.
To get career counseling and guidance, you can contact our expert counselors. Enroll fast to start your journey toward a successful career as a professional CPA USA.
Make an Enquiry