New Members - FAQs
Confirmation of Acceptance into Membership
Q: How will the Association let me know that I’ve been accepted into membership?
A: Within one week of your acceptance into membership, you will receive an email confirmation from Pamela Skinner, CGA, Director, Member Services, confirming that you are now a Certified General Accountant with CGA-BC. At this point you may use your designation.
Member Package by Mail
Q: Will I also receive a hardcopy confirmation?
A: Yes. Within a week of the email from the Director, Member Services, you will receive a new member package by mail that includes a letter from the Chair of the CGA-BC Board and the CGA-BC CEO; your member ID card; your transcript of grades; and a gift of free life insurance for one year from CGA-Canada.
Q: Who should I contact if I did not get a member package?
A: Please contact [ecombrinck#cga-bc,org]Elize Combrinck.
Electronic New Member Package
Q: I’m not sure of my responsibilities and benefits as a new CGA. Where can I learn about the expectations, benefits and opportunities that come with my new membership?
A: The email from the Director, Member Services will include a link to the electronic New Member Package. To make your first year and your ongoing CGA membership a success, it is your obligation to read and understand the information provided in the package. The package covers required Continuing Professional Development (CPD) reporting; the mandatory ethics workshop for new graduates; the member benefits program; public practice requirements; and more. Once you’ve read the package, select the “I Have Read” button to confirm you have read everything. Your response will be tracked.
Q: How soon can I start to use my designation?
A: As soon as you receive the email from the Director, Member Services, you may display and use your CGA designation after your name.
Certificates of Membership
Q: When can I expect my certificates?
A: Certificates confirming your CGA membership will be mailed to your preferred mailing address (recorded in your member profile with the Association) within six to eight weeks of your acceptance into membership. Please ensure the address information in your member profile is up to date.
Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
Q: What is CPD?
A: CPD is the ongoing training required by all CGAs. It includes seminars, workshops, courses and other activities that are required to develop the professional knowledge, skills and values of a Certified General Accountant. As a new member, your responsibility is to maintain the standards and technical competence of the accounting profession. CPD compliance is an important part of your professional commitment and is one of the obligations of CGA as a member of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC).
Q: Where can I find more information on the CPD Policy and reporting requirements?
A: For details on all the CPD policies, see Continuing Professional Development.
Q: Who do I contact if I still have CPD questions?
A: If you have any questions regarding the CPD program and reporting requirements, please contact [jmartin#cga-bc,org]Jacqueline Martin.
CPD Program and Reporting Requirements
Q: When do I start to report CPD?
A: All new graduates begin reporting their CPD activities in their first full year of membership. Activities undertaken since your acceptance date can be included in this first report. For example: a member with an acceptance date of May 31, 2011, will have 2012 as their first CPD reporting year. The member will be able to include any activities completed between May 31, 2011 (acceptance date) and December 31, 2012 on their first report. The annual CPD reporting deadline will be January 31, 2013.
Q: What is the “three-year rolling total” of CPD hours?
A: Members need to accumulate 120 hours of CPD activities on a three-year rolling total basis. If, for example, you became a member in 2011, your first three-year cycle to report 120 hours of CPD would begin in 2012 and end in 2014. Because the cycle “rolls” on from one year to the next,your second three-year CPD cycle would be 2013–2015, and so on.
Q: What is the 120/60 CPD requirement?
A: Of the 120 hours required of the three-year rolling total of CPD, a minimum of 60 hours must be “verifiable” CPD. We refer to this as the 120/60 requirement. We recommend that members complete 20 verifiable and 20 non-verifiable hours per year. For definitions and examples of what constitutes verifiable and non-verifiable CPD, click here.
Mandatory Ethics Requirement
Q: What is the mandatory ethics requirement for new members who graduated from the CGA Program of Professional Studies?
A: New members who graduate from the CGA program are required to take a full-day (7 hours) rules and standards workshop as a requirement of certification.
Q: What course(s) qualify to fulfill the mandatory ethics requirement?
A: Only the CGA-BC in-person workshop The Essence of Professionalism: Ethics, Rules and Standards for New CGAs or the PD Network online course Professionalism: Ethics, Rules, and Standards for New CGAs fulfill this requirement.
Q: What is the exemption policy for the ethics requirement?
A: There are No exemptions available from the mandatory new member ethics requirement. New members not completing either the ethics workshop or the online course within one full calendar year after their date of graduation will be referred to the Ethics Committee.
Q: Where can I find more information on the mandatory full-day ethics requirement?
A: For more information on the full-day ethics requirement and to register for the CGA-BC workshop, see Ethics Requirement.
Q: Who do I contact if I have questions about the full-day ethics requirement?
A: Please contact [itomyn#cga-bc,org]Irene Tomyn.
Q: Who do I contact if I have difficulty registering for the CGA-BC workshop?
A: Please contact [ahayward#cga-bc,org]Allyson Hayward with questions about registering for the ethics workshop.
Mutual Agreements – Our Global Partners
Q: What is the meaning of “members admitted through mutual agreements?”
A: CGA has separate mutual recognition agreements (MRAs) with some of the world’s largest accounting bodies – the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), CPA Australia, CPA Ireland and OEC de France. Each agreement allows for qualified members of either body to become a member of the other, and to enjoy the benefits that both Associations offer. For more information, visit Our Global Partners.
Q: How does one qualify for a career in public practice?
A: A career in public practice involves both those employed by a public accounting firm and those who own the firm (referred to as public practitioners or those “engaged” in public practice). CGA members and students may be employees in public practice, but only members who register in public practice may own part or all of a CGA public practice firm. For more information visit Public Practice. The employment exemption from the requirement to register does not apply to members employed by firms that are owned, operated and controlled by a non-arms length person or persons, and that are not CGA, CA or CMA firms registered with their respective associations.
Q: What are the requirements and rules for entry into public practice?
A: Prior to engaging in the practice of public accounting, members are required to Register with the Association.
Q: I have questions regarding a career in public practice, who do I contact?
A: If you wish to discuss career possibilities in public practice, contact [bilk#cga-bc,org]Brigitte Ilk, CGA, in the Public Practice Division.