AN ACT to Regulate the Practice of Public Accountant in the State of Delaware.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Delaware in General Assembly met:

Section 1. That any person who has received from the State Board of Accountancy a certificate of his qualifications to practice as a public expert accountant as hereinafter provided shall be known and styled as a "Certified Public Accountant", and no other person and no partnership all of the members of which have not received such certificate and no corporation shall assume such title or the title of "Certified Accountant" or "Chartered Accountant" or the abbreviations "C. P.A." or "C. A." or any other words, letters or abbreviations tending to indicate that the person, firm or corporation so using the same is a certified public accountant.

Section 2. There is hereby created a state board of accountancy to consist of three members to be appointed by the Governor and who, with the exception of the members first to be appointed, shall be the holders of certificates issued under the provisions of this act and shall hold office for the term of three years and until their successors are appointed and qualified.

The members of the board first to be appointed shall be skilled in the practice of accounting and shall have been actively engaged therein on their own account within this State for a period of at least two years next preceding the passage of this act, and shall hold office, one for the term of three years, and one for the term of two years, and one for the term of one year. The term of office of each is to be designated by the Governor in his appointment.

Section 3. No Certificate as a Certified Public Accountant shall be granted to any person other than a citizen of the United States, residing or having a place for the regular transaction of business in the State of Delaware, who is over the age of twenty one years and of good moral character, and (except under the provisions of Section IV of this act) who shall have successfully passed an examination in "Theory of Accounts'', ''Practical Accounting", "Auditing", and "Commercial Law as Affecting Accountancy", and in such other subjects as the Board may deem advisable.

No person shall be permitted to take such examination unless he shall for a period of at least three years have been employed in the office of a Public Accountant as an assistant Accountant, or shall have been practicing as a Public Accountant on his own account, and who shall not at least three years prior to the date of said examination have successfully passed a preliminary examination in such subjects as may be prescribed by the Board touching his general education, qualifications and fitness as an accountant provided that the Board may in its discretion waive the preliminary examination of any applicant who, in its opinion, has had a general education equivalent to that which may be prescribed by its rules and is otherwise qualified.

All examinations provided for herein shall be conducted by the Board of Accountancy herein provided for. The time and place of holding examinations shall be duly advertised for not less than three consecutive days in one daily newspaper published in each of the places where the examinations are to be held, not less than thirty days prior to the date of each examination.

The examination shall take place as often as may be necessary in the opinion of the Board, but not less frequently than once each year.

The Board may make all needful rules and regulations regarding the conduct of the examinations or their character or scope, the method and time of filing applications for examinations and their form and contents, and all other rules and regulations necessary to carry into effect the purpose of this act.

Section 4. The State Board of Accountancy may in its discretion waive examination of and issue a degree as certified public accountant to any person possessing the qualifications mentioned in section III of this Act, who

(1) is the holder of a "C. P. A." certificate issued under the laws of another state, which extends similar privileges to certified public accountants of this state, provided the requirements for said degree in the state which has granted it to the applicant are, in the opinion of the Board of Accountancy, equivalent to those herein provided.

(2) shall be the holder of a degree of certified public accountant or chartered accountant, or the equivalent thereof, issued in any foreign government, provided that the requirements for such degree are equivalent to those herein provided for the degree of certified public accountant.

(3) is a resident of this State and who for more than two consecutive years next before the passage of this act shall have been practicing in this State on his own account as a public accountant, and who shall apply in writing to the board for such certificate within six months after the passage of this act.

Section 5. The State Board of Accountancy may revoke any certificate issued under this Act, or may cancel the registration of any certificate under this Act for unprofessional conduct or other sufficient cause, provided that written notice of the cause for such contemplated action and the date of the hearing thereon by the Board shall have been mailed to the holder of such certificate at least twenty days before such hearing. No certificate issued under this Act shall be revoked until such hearing shall have been held. At all such hearings the attorney-general of this State or one of his assistants designated by him shall sit with said Board with all the powers of a member thereof.

Section 6. The State Board of Accountancy shall charge for the examination and certificate provided for in this Act a fee of twenty five dollars ($25.00) to meet the expenses of such examinations. This fee shall be payable by the applicant at the time of making his initial application. No additional fee shall be charged any applicant.

From the fees collected under this act the Board shall pay all expenses incident to the examinations, the expenses of issuing certificates, traveling expenses of the members of the Board and their compensation while performing their duties under this Act, provided that no expense incurred under this act nor the compensation of the members shall be a charge against the funds of this State.

The members of the board of accountancy herein provided for shall be paid an amount not exceeding ten dollars ($10.00) per day to each member of said board for the time actually expended and also all necessary traveling expenses incurred in the performance of his duties under this act.

The Board shall report annually the number of certificates issued and receipts and expenses under this Act to the governor and any surplus then in the hands of the Board above the sum of Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00) which may be retained to meet future expenses, shall be paid, at the time of filing said account, to the State Treasurer, for the use of the State.

Section 7. If any person shall represent himself to the public as having a certificate provided for in this act, or shall assume to practice as a Certified Public Accountant without having received such certificate, or if any person having received such Certificate provided for in this act shall thereafter lose the same by revocation and continue to practice as a Certified Public Accountant, or use such title or any other title mentioned in section 1 of this Act, or if any person shall violate any of the provisions of this act, he shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof shall be fined in a sum not less than one hundred dollars ($100.00) or more than five hundred dollars ($500.00), or imprisoned in the county jail for a period of not less than one month nor more than six months, or both, in the discretion of the Court for each day during which he shall so practice or violate any of the provisions of this Act.

Section 8. This Act shall take effect immediately upon its passage.

Approved March 31, A. D. 1913.