The Certified Practising Accountants (CPA) assessing body assesses candidates who have an expertise working in a professional accounting role. CPA Australia assesses a candidate’s employment history to determine the work experience obtained is relevant to the occupation selected in ANZSCO occupation list.

The Eligibility Criteria and Requirements for CPA Assessment

These are the eligibility criteria that candidates will need to meet to have their skills assessed by CPA:

  • Your previous employment job duties must closely match with the ANZSCO code you have applied your occupation in.
  • You need to have relevant work experience that has been taken 10 years before conducting your CPA assessment.
  • The occupation you undertook must have been undertaken after completion of a formal education that is recognized by CPA Australia as at least equivalent to an Australian Bachelor’s level degree.
  • Your occupation should be continuous for 10 years and you must have worked for 20 hours per week in these 10 years.

Supporting Documents:

Along with meeting these criteria, you must also provide supporting documents and testimonials from your previous employer(s):

  • The testimonial should be written on the company’s official letterhead. The letterhead should include company’s full address, telephone number, email and website address.
  • The letterhead should include the name and designation of the person authorized to sign the letterhead. Any references that your colleagues provide will not be accepted.
  • The letterhead should include the work contact number and email address of the person writing the testimonial.

What must the Testimonial include?

  • The start and end date of your employment history
  • The position(s) you have held
  • Whether the position(s) you held were temporary or permanent
  • Whether your occupation was full-time or part-time
  • The working hours you spent per week
  • The duties or responsibilities undertaken in each position
  • The salary you earned

What if you are Self-Employed?

Self-employed candidates must provide a testimonial written on the official letterhead of the business. The letterhead should have the full address, email and website address.

The testimonial must include:

  • Your employment’s start and end date
  • The number of hours you worked per week
  • The job duties you served during your employment under each position
  • The salary or money you made

Also, following documents are required –

  • The registration of your business name
  • Your practicing certification
  • Tax returns of your first, middle and final year of your business operation
  • You will also need to provide references from at least two or three clients on the letterhead

English Language Requirement

CPA Australia considers the following tests or programs to determine the English proficiency of candidates:

  • Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE)
  • IELTS Academic
  • PTE Academic
  • Skilled Migration Internship Program Accounting (SMIPA)

The scores required to be eligible for CPA assessment are as follows:

Listening Reading Writing Speaking
CAE* 185 185 185 185
IELTS Academic 7 7 7 7
TOEFL iBT 24 24  27 23
PTE Academic** 65 65  65 65


Provisional Assessment: If a candidate is applying for a temporary (subclass 485) Visa, the following scores are required:

Listening Reading Writing Speaking
CAE*  169 169 169 169
IELTS  6 6 6 6
TOEFL iBT  12 13 21  18
PTE Academic  50 50 50  50

You can use this online application form to apply for skills assessment. You will receive your reference number and acknowledgement letter to your email address once you complete the skills assessment form. Further details will be mentioned in the acknowledgement email.

How do you apply for Skills Assessment?

Getting Your Documents Prepared

Here is a list of must-have documents for CPA skills assessment:

  • Your academic documents (Degree and/or Certificates)
  • Your transcripts of marks
  • English test scores of a recognized test taker
  • Syllabus
  • A letter of Authority duly signed

These supporting documents can be scanned and emailed to CPA; or you can post the copies of these directly to CPA Australia’s assessment unit in Melbourne.

Emailing Your Documents

If you choose to email your documents, you must make ensure that you follow certain scanning and format standards. All your original documents must be color scanned. Any documents consisting of your credit card details must not be sent to the CPA for assessment.

The documents must be correctly scanned to ensure that there are minimal to no delays while assessing your documents. Do consider following points in case of documents –

  • All original documents must be scanned on both sides
  • Ensure color scanning of documents
  • You must also ensure that the documents you are sending meet the following formats:
    • .jpeg
    • .bmp
    • .gif
    • .png
    • .pdf
    • .tiff

Please note that PDF files encrypted with a password will not be accepted.

You can send as many documents as you want but the email size must not exceed over 40MB. Compressed and archived documents cannot be accepted.

Posting Your Documents

CPA will accept only certified true copies of your original documents for assessment. Your documents can be certified by:

  • A CPA, FCPA or full member of an IFAC professional body
  • A notary public
  • A commissioner for oaths
  • A justice of peace
  • CPA Australia employees
  • A police officer
  • A bank manager, dentist, legal practitioner, medical practitioner, pharmacist, or veterinary surgeon
  • Australian consular officer
  • MARA registered migration agent

Steps to take after Skills Assessment

Assessment Validity

The validity of your skills assessment is for three years with the Department of Immigration and Border (DIBP).

Your application remains valid with CPA Australia for a period of two years from the original acknowledgement date.

You may also be required to complete further studies. You have two options to choose from:

  • You can complete the additional studies via a CPA Program Foundation Exam
  • Complete your additional studies via accredited courses offered by other higher level education providers

Fee for CPA Australia Skills Assessment

Your assessment fee will vary depending on your location. In case, you are already a member of CPA Australia and have already paid the current full year’s membership fee, you do not have to pay any extra charges for your migration assessment.

Following table shows the amount you will need to pay for CPA skills assessment:

New members  Fee (AUD)
Application fee (2017) $180
Application review fee $100
First-year membership: Associate (full year) $325
First-year membership: CPA or FCPA (full year) $720
First-year membership: Associate (half year) $162.50
First-year membership: CPA or FCPA (half year) $360


Author: visasabroad
Visas Abroad Services LLP dealing with Canada, Australia & New Zealand permanent residency visa under skilled worker category.