All you need to know about CPE.
How many hours of CPE do I need to keep my certificate active? How does this compare with the CPE membership requirements for the COCPA?
The answer depends on the status of the CPA’s certificate.
Colorado State Board of Accountancy CPE Requirements
You must complete 80 hours of CPE over the 2-year reporting period that runs January 1, 2018 to December 31, 2019.
No more than more than 20% (16 of 80 hours) of CPE can be in Personal Development, as defined by the Fields of Study.
Additionally, four hours of the 80 must be in ethics, of which up to two hours can be in CR&R.
100% can be self-study.
Newly licensed CPAs must take an ethics class that includes CR&R within the first six months before or after licensure.
As of January 1, 2014, no more than 50% of CPE can be in any combination of teaching or publishing an article or book.
There are new record retention and documentation requirements for teaching and writing CPE programs. Please see Chapter 7 of the State Board of Accountancy rules for details.
No CPE is required.
Go to the Colorado State Board of Accountancy website for rules regarding reinstatement or reactivation.
COCPA CPE Membership Requirements
The continuing professional education (CPE) requirements for membership in the Colorado Society of Certified Public Accountants shall be, that for each two-year reporting period beginning with the 1990 calendar year, all members shall demonstrate that they have completed acceptable continuing professional education.*
*Associate members who are pursuing further requirements to become a CPA or a CPA firm administrator are exempt from the membership CPE requirement, as are student, retired, honorary, and professional leave members with inactive Colorado CPA certificates.
You may also request a waiver of the COCPA CPE membership requirement if you are unable to fulfill the requirements for any of the reasons below:
Foreign residency – Include the country of residence, the name of your employer, your principal duties and responsibilities performed, and the reason(s) foreign residency prohibits fulfilling the requirement.
Health – Include the nature of your illness, the name and address of your attending physician, and the reason(s) the illness prohibits you from fulfilling the requirement.
Military service – Include the principal duties performed, where stationed, the name and address of your commanding officer, and the reasons military service prohibits you from fulfilling the requirement.
Other hardship reasons – Include the nature of the hardship and the reason(s) why it prohibits you from fulfilling the requirement.
Send your request and documentation (including your name, address, phone number, and email information) to Rebecca Campbell at 303-741-8618 or firstname.lastname@example.org. When your status changes from the one for which the exception applies, your CPE requirement begins in the calendar year following the change.
Acceptable continuing professional education is as follows:
Active Certificate with the Colorado State Board of Accountancy
Engaged in public practice – 80 hours
Not engaged in public practice – 80 hours
Certain Associate members in public practice – 80 hours
Members who have placed their CPA certificate/license in inactive status with a state board of accountancy and do not hold themselves out as CPAs to third parties are not required to take CPE.
Inactive Certificate with Colorado Board of Accountancy
Not engaged in public practice – no CPE requirement
Certain Associate members not in public practice – no CPE requirement
Students, certain Associate members, firm administrators, retired, and lifetime members – no CPE requirement
Just received your certificate? You must complete 10 hours of CPE during each full quarter remaining in the reporting period, of which no more than 20 percent shall be in Personal Development, as defined by the Fields of Study. At least two hours of CPE must be in ethics, which may be satisfied by Colorado Rules & Regulations (CR&R), if taken as described in Rule 6.3.A.
How do I register for a class offered by the COCPA?
You may register by:
7887 E. Belleview Avenue, Suite 200
Englewood, CO 80111
For discount information, including volume buying discounts, check your copy of QuickSearch.
Where is the COCPA Education Center located?
The COCPA office and education center is located in southeast Denver. The address is 7887 E. Belleview Ave., Suite 200, Englewood, CO 80111.
Where should I stay near the COCPA?
There are several area hotels near the COCPA office and education center. For more information, see Visiting COCPA.
What time do classes start?
Check-in for most classes begins at 8:00 a.m., and most full-day classes run from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Specific course times are indicated in the course catalog.
May I register at the course site on the day of the class?
Walk-in registrations are accepted if space and materials are available. Walk-ins must pay the higher, non-member fee.
How early should I register for a class?
You are encouraged to register as early as possible to be assured a space in the class. Courses with too few registrants will be cancelled seven days before the program.
Where can I find course descriptions?
Refer to the online course catalog for detailed course descriptions.
Can I get CPE credit for attending college courses?
Yes. You must provide a transcript for documentation of coursework completed.
1 semester hour = 15 CPE credit hours
1 quarter hour = 10 CPE credit hours
How do I get my class or conference approved for CPE credit?
There is no pre-approval process. Sponsors must follow Article III, Standards for CPE Program Sponsors, of the AICPA/NASBA Statement on Standards for CPE Programs. If you are audited by the State Board of Accountancy, you must prove the CPE sponsor meets the AICPA/NASBA requirements.
I am teaching a course. Do I get CPE credit, and if so, how much?
Instructors, discussion leaders, or speakers who present a learning activity for the first time may receive CPE credit for actual preparation time up to two times the number of CPE hours they teach. For example, for an eight hour course, instructors may receive up to 24 CPE credits (16 for preparation plus eight for presentation). For repeat presentations, CPE credit can be claimed only if it can be demonstrated that the learning activity content was substantially changed, and such change required significant additional study or research. Refer to the Colorado State Board of Accountancy Rules for documentation requirements to claim credit. Please note: no more than 50% of your CPE requirement can be fulfilled by teaching or writing.
CPE refunds and transfers: will I get my money back?
If you transfer from an in-class course to a webcast, the above policies apply. To cancel or transfer a course, please contact the Member Services department at 303-773-2877 or 800-523-9082.
Can I take all my CPE in one year?
How many self-study hours can I take to meet the CPE requirements?
All of your CPE hours can be earned through self-study courses.
I am a member of another state society but not a member of the COCPA. Can I get the COCPA member discount?
Yes. As a one-time courtesy, you can receive the member discount. Call the Member Services department at 303-773-2877 or
How do I request specific courses for my area?
Contact Rebecca Campbell at email@example.com or 303-741-8618.
How long do I need to keep my CPE certificates of attendance?
The Colorado State Board of Accountancy requires that you retain your CPE attendance records for five years.
What are the recognized fields of study by the Colorado State Board of Accountancy?
Please click here for a complete listing of the CPE fields of study accepted by the Colorado State Board of Accountancy.
COCPA Complaint Resolution Policy
The COCPA is committed to providing you with the highest standards of service. There may be an occasion when we do not meet your expectations. If that happens, please email Rebecca Campbell, CPE Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or call her at 303-741-8618 about your experience. She will respond within 24 hours and provide a resolution as soon as possible. We appreciate your participation in our programs and look forward to providing you with the excellent customer service we strive for.