ICAI – Institute of Chartered Accountants of India Introduction
Established on 1st July 1949 under the Chartered Accountants Act 1949, ICAI is the national professional accounting body of India and its members are known as Chartered Accountants. Deriving its motto “Ya Aeshu Suptaeshu Jagruti i.e. A person who is awake in those that sleep” ICAI has a detailed code of ethics and achieved and earned recognition as a premier accoiunting body not only in India but has earned accolades from around the world for maintaining highest stnadards in technical and ethical areas and also for maintaining stringent education and examination standards. ICAI management is managed and undertaken by a Council formed under the Chartered Accountants Act 1949, which consists of 32 elected fellow members and 8 members nominated by the Government of India. Its very first president was CA G.P. Kapadia whereas its current president is CA Naveen N.D.Gupta.
Having 27,000 registered memebrs, ICAI regulates Chartered Accountants course and one can make his entry into the profession by opting for the very basic course i.e. CA Foundation Course, which you can do directly after 10+2. Associate members of ICAI can use the CA as prefix to their names whereas members who have completed five years of practice can use FCA.
Primary functions of ICAI are as below:
- It prescribes the qualification for a much sought after career of Chartered Accountant and also conducts the requisite exams.
- It is also authorized to issue Certificate of Practice after which you can practice as a chartered accountant.
- It is the regulatory body of the chartered accountancy profession.
- It is the only licensing cum regulating body of the financial audit and accountancy profession in India.
- ICAI also sets technical standards like Standards on Internal Audit (SIA), Corporate Affairs Standards (CAS) which are followed by practising Chartered Accountants.
- ICAI is the only institute in India which is responsible for setting the auditing and assurance standards which are followed in the audit of financial statements in the country.
- Apart from its primary functions, ICAI also recommends the accounting standards to be followed by the companies in India to the National Financial Reporting Authority (NFRA) and it also sets the accounting standards to be followed by other types of organisations.
How to register with ICAI?
In order to become a Chartered Accountant in India, which is a much sought after and one of the toughest course, you have to register yourself with the ICAI and go through various stages like CPT, IPC, internship and final.
Anyone who has cleared his 10th exam from a recognized and authorized body can register for Common Proficiency Test (CPC) of the CA programme however you can only appear from the CPC after your 10+2 exams and since ICAI hasn’t put any age or marks restriction for the CPC, you can opt for the same at any point of time in your life and the registration for both CPC and Integrated Professional Competence Course (IPCC) is open throughout the year.
ICAI gives two ways for entries into Chartered Accountant curriculum such as:
CPT entry after class 12th/ CA Foundation
For entry into CPT after classs 12th: Carrer of Chartered Accountant is quite a sought after by commerce students and almost all of them want to be a part of the league, however one of the important and basic difference amongst those who make it and those who doesn’t is that former ones are clear from as early as calss 10th whereas later ones take their call quite late in their life. Candidates who aspire to be a part of ICAI should decide their mode of entry in class 10th only because in order to appear for the CPC after class 12th, you need to have registered for the same as early as when you were in class 10th.
Eligibility criteria of appearing for CPC is:
- Class 10th and 12th exam of any recognized board which is equivalent to Senior Secondary Examination recognized by the Central Government.
- The British examining bodies recognized by The Association of Indian Universities which is as equivalent to Class 12th.
- Diploma courses after class 10th under State/Central Government(s) Examination bodies.
However, starting from 1st July 2017, ICAI has revised its syllabus and has replaced CPT with CA Foundation and unlike it was it CPT, a student will be able to register himself for CA Foundation course only when he is in class 12th and it is advisabel to register at least 4-5 months in advance. For example, if you want to appear in December 2018, then you must do the registration before 31st July 2018.
For registering yourself with the ICAI for the CA Foundation Course, you need to visit the ICAI website www.icai.org and forms are available under Students tab. You need to fill up the application form and submit the same with the applicable fees , which in case of CA Foundation Course is Rs 9,200 without journal and Rs 9,400 with journal. You can choose your choice of payment gateway like debit card, credit card or netbanking for making the payment. Once you have made the payment, you can download the form and submit the same at the ICAI’s regional office within 7 days of online registration along with supporting documents such as:
ICAI also issues CA Foundation registration letter and it takes aprox one month for the registration letter to reach your address so in case you don’t have that much of time to wait, you can download the registration letter from the ICAI website as well by following below mentioned steps:
Once you have submitted your application form along with above mentioned set of supporting documents, you can either submit the docket at the ICAI bhawan personally or you can send the same through post at ICAI’s regional office. It is always advisabel to carry your registration letter for the exams because in case of non-availability of admit card, you can show your registration letter. Once your registration is completed, you are registered for CA Foundation course which is equivalent to getting registered with the ICAI and its valid for 3 years from the date of registration.
ICAI Direct Entry Scheme for Graduates
ICAI also gives you another route to register yourself i.e. direct entry after graduation and this scheme is only for those who have completed their graduation under below mentioned categories:
- Commerce graduates and post graduates who have secured at least 50% of total marks in any one of the recognized universities and should have at least 3 papers of Accounting, Mercantile Laws, Auditing, Corporate Laws, Economics, Taxation, Costing, Management Accounting and Administration.
- Graduates who are not from commerce background and have minimum of 60% of total marks and also those who have completed their graduation from any university including open university.
- Candidates who have cleared CS Executive exams under Institute of Company Secretaries of India and also those who have cleared the CWA Inter Exams under the Institute of Cost Accountants of India.
Also, the candidates who appear through direct entry are not required to appear for CA Foundation Course and thus can directly appear for Integrated Professional Competence Course (IPCC).
CA Intermediate, Articleship training and CA Final test are the next steps after you have cleared CA Foundation course wherin CA Intermediate has replaced the IPC course and has come into effect from 1st July 2017 and one can register for the CA Intermediate course by filing up the required form and by making the requisite fees on the ICAI website. For the students opting for direct entry, they have to submit proof of their graduation for starting practical training and if submitted proof is valid then they can proceed to complete Information Technology (ITT) and O.P (Orientation Programme) in the provisional registration period, however if the submitted proof is not valdi then their provisional registration stands cancelled.
After a student has cleared CA Intermediate, the next step is to appear for the CA Final exam by submitting the CA Final Registration Form. Like other registration forms, CA Final registration is not automatic and needs to be done on ICAI website by paying the requisite fees of Rs 10,000 which is payable only by the demand draft or pay order made in favour of “The Secretary, Institute of Chartered Accountant of India” payable at New Delhi/Chennai/Kolkata/Mumbai/Kanpur as per the registered address of the student, along with the attested copy of IPCC marksheet by a Chartered Accountant.