NEW JERSEY REGISTER
VOLUME 33, NUMBER 15
MONDAY, AUGUST 6, 2001
RULE PROPOSAL
LAW AND PUBLIC SAFETY
DIVISION OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS
STATE BOARD OF ACCOUNTANCY

LICENSE REQUIREMENTS; RENEWALS; SUSPENDED LICENSE; REINSTATEMENT

Additions are indicated by <<+ Text +>>; deletions by <<- Text ->>.
Changes in tables are made but not highlighted.

Proposed Amendment: N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.11 and 2.3

Authorized By: New Jersey State Board of Accountancy,
Jay Church, Executive Director.

Authority: N.J.S.A. 45:1-7, 45:2B-48 and 45:1-15.1.
Proposal Number: PRN 2001-322.

Submit comments by October 5, 2001 to:

Jay Church, Executive Director
New Jersey State Board of Accountancy
124 Halsey Street
PO Box 45000
Newark, New Jersey 07101

The agency proposal follows:

Summary

Pursuant to its general rulemaking authority at N.J.S.A. 45:2B-48, and the provisions of the Uniform Enforcement Act, N.J.S.A. 45:1-1 et seq., the New Jersey State Board of Accountancy (the Board) is proposing amendments to its rules regarding license renewal procedures. This proposal has not been calendared pursuant to the requirements of N.J.A.C. 1:30-3.1 and, therefore, a 60-day public comment period is provided pursuant to N.J.A.C. 1:30-3.3(a) 5.

Currently, N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.11(c) provides that a licensee will be charged a late renewal fee if his or her license renewal application is received by the Board 60 days after the expiration date of his or her license. After this 60- day period, a licensee must apply to the Board for reinstatement, paying a reinstatement fee, as well as the renewal fee for the current registration period. N.J.A.C. 13:29-2.3(a), which sets forth license renewal requirements for registered municipal accountants, also provides that a late renewal fee will be charged for any renewal application received by the Board within 60 days of the license expiration date, and that following this 60-day period, reinstatement of the license is required. The Board proposes to amend N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.11 and 2.3 because the rules are inconsistent with recently amended provisions of the Uniform Enforcement Act.

The Uniform Enforcement Act, as amended by P.L. 1999, c.403, at N.J.S.A. 45:1-7.1(a) provides that "notwithstanding any other act or regulation to the contrary, this section ... shall apply to every holder of a professional or occupational license or certificate of registration or certification issued or renewed by a board specified in (N.J.S.A. 45:1-15), who seeks renewal of that license or certificate." N.J.S.A. 45:1-15 specifically includes the New Jersey State Board of Accountancy and, therefore, the renewal provisions of N.J.S.A. 45:1-7.1 must be applied to Board of Accountancy licensees.

N.J.S.A. 45:1-7.1(b) provides that a licensee seeking renewal of his or her license shall submit a renewal application and pay a renewal fee, prior to the date of license expiration. Within 30 days of the license expiration date, a licensee must submit a renewal application, and must pay a renewal fee and a late fee. After 30 days from the date of expiration, the license is suspended without a hearing. Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 45:1-7.1(c), a license suspended under this section may be reinstated within five years following the date of expiration, upon the submission of a renewal application and the payment of a reinstatement fee. N.J.S.A. 45:1-7.2 also provides, in part, that the Board may reinstate a license that has been suspended pursuant to N.J.S.A. 45:1- 7.1, provided the applicant remits all past delinquent renewal fees.

The Board is proposing to amend N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.11 and 2.3 to make the rules consistent with the requirements of N.J.S.A. 45:1-7.1 and 7.2 of the Uniform Enforcement Act. Specifically, the Board is proposing to amend N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.11(c) to provide that a licensee submitting a renewal application within 30 days following the date of license expiration will be subject to a late fee, in addition to the license renewal fee. A licensee who submits the renewal application more than 30 days after the date of license expiration will have his or her license suspended without a hearing. Pursuant to proposed new subsection (e), a licensee who has had his or her license suspended for failure to renew the license in a timely manner may apply to the Board for reinstatement within five years following the date of license expiration. A licensee seeking reinstatement must remit payment of all past delinquent renewal fees and a reinstatement fee. In addition, applicants for reinstatement will be required to submit evidence of having completed all delinquent continuing professional education credit hours, consistent with the requirements delineated in N.J.A.C. 13:29-6.2(c), in order to ensure that applicants have maintained their professional competency during their suspension period.

The Board is proposing identical amendments to the requirements of N.J.A.C. 13:29-2.3 in amending subsection (a) and recodifying it as subsection (c), and adding new subsections (d) and (e). Subsection (b) is clarified and moved to precede subsection (c). New subsection (a) provides that applicants who satisfy the requirements of subchapter 2 shall pay the initial license fee set forth at N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.13.

Social Impact

The Board believes that the proposed amendments to N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.11 and 2.3 will have a positive impact upon both licensees and the consumers they serve. The proposed amendments serve to clarify for licensees who have had their licenses suspended for failure to renew in a timely manner what requirements they must satisfy prior to having their licenses reinstated. In addition, the requirement that applicants for reinstatement must have completed all delinquent continuing professional education requirements prior to reinstatement will help to ensure that only those applicants who have maintained professional competency during the period they were suspended will be granted a license to engage in the practice of accountancy again.

Economic Impact

The proposed amendments to N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.11 and 2.3 may have an economic impact upon licensees to the extent that licensees who submit their renewal applications within 30 days of their license expiration date must submit a late fee, in addition to the standard license renewal fee charged by the Board. In addition, licensees who have had their licenses suspended for failure to renew within 30 days of the license expiration date may incur additional costs if they wish to have their license reinstated. A licensee seeking reinstatement within five years of the date his or her license expired must submit a renewal application, all past delinquent renewal fees and a reinstatement fee. Applicants for reinstatement must also have completed all delinquent continuing professional education requirements prior to reinstatement. The Board believes that the economic costs to be borne by licensees who fail to renew their licenses in a timely manner, as well as those to be borne by licensees who seek reinstatement following a license suspension for failure to renew, will be outweighed by the benefit to consumers in ensuring that all persons providing accounting services in New Jersey hold active licenses.

Federal Standards Statement

A Federal standards analysis is not required because the proposed amendments are governed by N.J.S.A. 45:1-1 et seq., and are not subject to any Federal standards or requirements.

Jobs Impact

The Board does not believe that the proposed amendments will result in the creation or the loss of jobs in the State.

Agriculture IndustryImpact

The Board does not believe that the proposed amendments will have any impact on the agriculture industry of the State.

Regulatory Flexibility Analysis

The Regulatory Flexibility Act (the Act), N.J.S.A. 52:14B-16 et seq., requires the Board to provide a description of the types and an estimate of the number of small businesses to which the proposed amendments will apply. Currently, the Board licenses approximately 19,637 accountants. If, for purposes of the Act, Board licensees are considered "small businesses" within the meaning of the Act, then the following analysis applies.

The Act requires the Board to set forth the reporting, recordkeeping and other compliance requirements of the proposed amendments including, the kinds of professional services likely to be needed to comply with the requirements. The Act further requires the Board to estimate the initial and annual compliance costs of the proposed amendments, to outline the manner in which it has designed the proposed amendments to minimize any adverse economic impact upon small businesses, and to set forth whether the proposed amendments establish differing compliance requirements for small businesses.

The proposed amendments to N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.11 and 2.3 do not impose any reporting or recordkeeping requirements upon licensees. The proposed amendments, however, do impose compliance requirements upon persons licensed as certified public accountants and registered municipal accountants. The proposed amendments to N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.11(c) and 2.3(c) require licensees to remit their renewal applications to the Board, along with the specified renewal fee, prior to the date of their license expiration. If a licensee submits the renewal application within 30 days following the date of his or her license expiration, he or she must also submit a late fee with the application. Pursuant to N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.11(d) and 2.3(d), if a licensee fails to submit the renewal application within 30 days of the license expiration date, he or she must cease engaging in the practice of accountancy because his or her license is considered suspended. Pursuant to subsections (e) of N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.11 and 2.3, a licensee applying for reinstatement within five years of the date his or her license expired must submit a renewal application, all past delinquent renewal fees and a reinstatement fee. Licensees seeking reinstatement must also submit evidence of having completed all delinquent continuing professional education credit hour requirements.

In addition, the proposed amendments to subsections (a) and (b) of N.J.A.C. 13:29-2.3 require applicants who have satisfied the requirements for licensure as a registered municipal accountant to pay an initial licensing fee and to comply with the Board's rules on professional conduct.

No additional professional services will be needed to comply with the proposed amendments. The costs of compliance with the proposed amendments are set forth in the Economic Impact Statement above. The Board proposes these amendments in order to make its requirements regarding license renewal, suspension and reinstatement consistent with the requirements imposed by the Uniform Enforcement Act and, therefore, no differing compliance requirements for licensees are provided based on size.

Full text of the proposal follows:

<< NJ ADC 13:29-1.11 >>

13:29-1.11 Licensee requirements; <<+renewal;+>> <<-expired->> <<+ suspended+>> license<<+; reinstatement+>>

(a)-(b) (No change.)

(c) A Certified Public Accountant shall renew his or her license for a period of three years from the last expiration date. <<-A late renewal fee shall be charged for any renewal application received by the Board within 60 days after the applicable triennial registration date. After the 60th day, the Board may consider the license expired. Thereafter, the licensee shall be required to apply for reinstatement and to pay the reinstatementfee and the fee for the current registration period as set forth in N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.13.->> <<+ The licensee shall remit a renewal application to the Board, along with the renewal fee set forth in N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.13, prior to the date of license expiration. A licensee who submits a renewal application within 30 days following the date of license expiration shall submit the renewal fee, as well as the late fee set forth in N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.13. A licensee who fails to submit a renewal application within 30 days of the date of license expiration shall have his or her license suspended without a hearing.+>>

(d) A licensee who continues to engage in the practice of accountancy with <<-an expired->> <<+a suspended+>> license shall be deemed to be engaging in the unauthorized practice of accountancy and shall be subject to the penalties set forth in N.J.S.A. 45:1-25 et seq.

<<+(e) A licensee who has had his or her license suspended pursuant to (c) above may apply to the Board for reinstatement within five years following the date of license expiration. A licensee applying for reinstatement shall submit a renewal application, all past delinquent renewal fees and the reinstatement fee set forth in N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.13, as well as evidence of having completed all delinquent continuing professional education credit hours consistent with the requirements set forth in N.J.A.C. 13:29-6.2(c).+>>

<< NJ ADC 13:29-2.3 >>

13:29-2.3 Licensee requirements; <<+renewal;+>> <<-expired->> <<+ suspended+>> license<<+; reinstatement+>>

<<+(a) Applicants who satisfy the requirements of this subchapter shall pay the initial license fee set forth in N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.13.+>>

<<+(b) Applicants granted a license pursuant to this subchapter shall comply with the Rules of Professional Conduct set forth in N.J.A.C. 13:29-3.+>>

<<-(a)->><<+(c) +>>The holder of a Registered Municipal Accountant's license shall renew the license for a period of three years from the last expiration date. <<-A late renewal fee shall be charged for any renewal application received by the Board within 60 days after the applicable triennial registration date. After the 60th day, the Board may consider the license expired. Thereafter, the licensee shall be required to apply for reinstatement and to pay the reinstatement fee and the fee for the current registration period set forth in N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.13. A licensee who continues to practice with an expired license shall be deemed to be engaging in unauthorized practice and shall be subject to the penalties set forth in N.J.S.A. 45:1-25 et seq.->> <<+A licensee shall remit a renewal application to the Board, along with the renewal fee set forth in N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.13, prior to the date of license expiration. A licensee who submits a renewal application within 30 days following the date of license expiration shall submit the renewal fee, as well as the late fee set forth in N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.13. A licensee who fails to submit a renewal application within 30 days of the date of license expiration shall have his or her license suspended without a hearing.+>>

<<-(b) Applicants who have complied with all of the provisions in this subchapter and passed the Registered Municipal Accountant's examination shall comply with the Rules of Professional Conduct in N.J.A.C. 13:29-3.->>

<<+(d) A licensee who continues to practice with a suspended license shall be deemed to be engaging in unauthorized practice and shall be subject to the penalties set forth in N.J.S.A. 45:1-25 et seq.+>>

<<+(e) A licensee who has had his or her license suspended pursuant to (c) above may apply to the Board for reinstatement within five years following the date of license expiration. A licensee applying for reinstatement shall submit a renewal application, all past delinquent renewal fees and the reinstatement fee set forth in N.J.A.C. 13:29-1.13, as well as evidence of having completed all delinquent continuing professional education credit hours consistent with the requirements set forth in N.J.A.C. 13:29-6.2(c).+>>

33 N.J.R. 2594(a)

END OF DOCUMENT


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