Governor Andrew Cuomo has signed a CPA mobility bill into law in New York State.

The legislation, S2628-A, grants mobility practice privileges to out-of-state licensed CPAs. It also ensures that all New York-licensed CPAs will have the same access to cross-border practice that non-New York CPAs have when they provide client services across state lines. With the enactment of the bill, New York State became the 48th state to enact CPA mobility legislation in accordance with Section 23 of the Uniform Accountancy Act. Cuomo signed the bill on Wednesday.

The law authorizes the New York State Board of Regents to determine whether a state's CPA licensure requirements are substantially equivalent to New York's and will not change the current law's provisions on New York CPA licensure. Any CPA who comes into New York under the proposed mobility practice privilege would fall under the jurisdiction and be subject to the rules of New York State, even if the cross-border practice in question consists of a single email. The law goes into effect on Nov. 15, 90 days after the bill was signed by Cuomo.

The New York State Society of CPAs has pushed for enactment of the bill, in conjunction with the American Institute of CPAs, which has been promoting CPA mobility laws around the country.

“I commend Governor Cuomo for signing New York's new CPA cross-border mobility statute,” said AICPA president and CEO Barry Melancon in a statement. “This legislation is good for all businesses and acknowledges the rapidly changing business environment in which the CPA profession practices and offers services, both in New York and around the country. I also congratulate the New York State Society of CPAs as well as the many individual CPAs and CPA firms who worked so hard to help the profession reach this new legislative milestone. Many small firms had their voices added to this process through the AICPA and NCCPAP, an association of small firms based in New York.”

Three states, Georgia, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts, have already adopted provisions that barred CPAs licensed in New York and other non-mobility states from providing services in their states because they had not yet adopted mobility. Now New York CPAs will have the same access to clients in other states that CPAs licensed in mobility states already have.

The bill was sponsored in New York by State Senator Kenneth P. LaValle, R–Port Jefferson, and in the New York State Assembly, by Assemblymember Deborah J. Glick, D–Manhattan.

Under Section 23 substantial equivalency, if a CPA has a license in good standing from a state that utilizes CPA licensure and certification criteria outlined in the Uniform Accountancy Act—150 hours of education, a passing grade on the CPA exam and at least one year of experience—then that CPA would be qualified to practice in any state that has adopted UAA Section 23 mobility.

Last year, the NYSSCPA board of directors unanimously adopted a resolution in support of cross-border mobility legislation in New York and strongly supported the Senate bill and its passage in both chambers of the legislature.

“I’m proud to say that New York is now a mobility state,” said NYSSCPA president Richard E. Piluso in a statement. “Similar legislation has been adopted in 47 other states in order to create a more uniform application of CPA licensing standards throughout the U.S. In today's global and technology-driven marketplace, more and more companies are doing business across state lines, physically and in many cases, electronically. New York is the financial capital of the world and CPA service can’t stop at state borders. Our CPAs in New York as well as CPAs throughout the country need to meet the needs of their clients across state lines and mobility enables them to do that.”

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