How to Become a CA (Chartered Accountant) in India – Complete Guide 2022

Are you interested in becoming a Chartered Accountant? Or, do you want to know the steps to become a CA in India after the 12th? Then this complete guide is for you. In this guide, you’ll learn about:

  • How to become CA in India?
  • What are the steps involved to become a CA?
  • What are the levels of the CA exams?
  • How many years it will take to become a Chartered Accountant?
  • What is the CA salary in India?

But first, let us get a brief about Chartered Accountancy. CA is a profession that deals in handling the financial and tax work of the companies. In the last few years, we have seen a growth in demand for Chartered Accountants due to the rise in the business and the financial sector.

Seeing this humungous growth, lakhs of students want to become Chartered Accountants. To become a CA, you need to clear all the three levels of the CA Course, i.e., Foundation, Inter and Final. Generally, it takes 5-6 years to crack the exams and become a CA. The initial CA salary offered to a fresher is around 8 to 9 lakhs per annum.

Now, let us know about how to become a CA in India in detail.

How to Become a CA (Chartered Accountant) in India 2022?

To become a CA in India, students need to:

  1. Register for the CA Foundation exams.
  2. Register for the CA Intermediate Course.
  3. Enroll for the Articleship Training (3 years).
  4. Crack the CA Final Exams.

Now let us understand the procedure to become a CA in India in detail.

1. Register for the CA Foundation Exams

How to Become a CA in India 2022

CA Foundation Course is an entry-level test in order to pursue Chartered Accountancy. Check all the details about the CA Foundation below.

Eligibility – To be eligible for CA Foundation, you need to clear the class 12th with the required percentage, that is

  • Candidates with a commerce background need to score a minimum of 50% marks in their board exams.
  • Candidates with non-commerce background need to score a minimum of 55% marks in their board exams

Registration – Eligible students need to register for the CA Foundation course. Students have to register for the course before 4 months of the exam month. The CA Foundation registration will be done through the ICAI official website.

Study period – Students get a study period of 4 months after their 12 classes.

Exam Form – Students also have to fill out the CA Foundation Exam form, in order to give the exams. The exam form can be filled out on the ICAI website. The ICAI announces the dates of filing the exam form.

Syllabus – The course is much similar to your 11th and 12th standard (Commerce stream). CA Foundation syllabus is divided into four subjects:

  1. Paper 1: Principles and Practices of Accounting
  2. Paper 2: Mercantile Law and General English
    1. Part I:  Mercantile Law
    2. Part II: General English
  3. Paper 3: Business Mathematics, Logical Reasoning, and Statistics
    1. Part I: Business Mathematics and Logical Reasoning
    2. Part II: Business Statistics
  4. Paper 4: Business Economics & Business and Commercial Knowledge
    1. Part I: Business Economics
    2. Part II: Business and Commercial Knowledge

Exam Pattern – The CA Foundation exam pattern is partially objective and subjective. The first two papers are subjective type and the next two papers are objective type. All the papers consist of 100 marks.

Preparation tips – Students should prefer good quality and updated CA Foundation study material for their preparation.

  • As you have already gone through the Accounts in your 11th and 12th, hence this subject can really help you to cover your aggregate percentage.
  • Mercantile Law is a new subject for you but make sure your concepts should be clear. Both the above subjects need practice as well as good presentation skills.
  • In case your maths is weak then you have 2 more options of reasoning and stats. Also, you have to practice on the calculator and also learn short tricks which save you time in the Examination hall.

Students can keep these things in mind during their CA Foundation preparation.

Passing Criteria – To clear the exams, students need to get 40% in each subject or an aggregate of 50%.

Result – The CA Foundation result is declared by ICAI 2 months after the last paper. So, the results of Dec 2021 will be declared in the month of February.

Validity – Students who don’t clear the foundation exams, can reappear in the next attempt. The registration is valid for 3 years or 6 attempts. After that, you have to register again.

2. Register for the CA Intermediate Course

How to Become a CA in India 2022, CA Intermediate Course Details

CA Intermediate Course will be your next level in the Chartered Accountancy journey after clearing the CA Foundation. This level is considered tough and students need to prepare well. Check all the details about the CA Intermediate below:

Eligibility – The eligibility criteria for CA Intermediate is through 3 ways i.e., clearing CA Foundation, Graduation/Post Graduation, clearing ICWA or intermediate level of CS.

  1. For the foundation route, you have to clear the CA Foundation with a minimum of 40% in each subject.
  2. For the Direct-entry route, you need to get
    • A minimum of 55% for commerce graduates or postgraduates
    • A minimum of 60% for Arts/Humanities/Science graduates or postgraduates

Registration – Eligible students can register for the CA Intermediate and start their preparation. You can register for the Intermediate exams in the month of March and September for November and May sessions.

Study Period – Students get a period of 8 months to prepare for the CA Intermediate exams.

Training – Along with the preparation, the applicant also need to complete the 4 weeks of ICITSS training.

Exam Form – ICAI declares the CA Intermediate exam form dates and the students can fill out the form. Only after filing the exam form, you’ll be able to get the admit card for your exams.

SyllabusCA Intermediate Syllabus consists of 8 subjects categorized into 2 groups. Generally, students are not able to clear the exam on the first attempt but if you plan your studies and revision in the right manner, you will not only clear this level in your first attempt but also be able to achieve a rank, if you dream so. Check the syllabus below:

Group 1 includes:

  1. Paper-1: Accounting
  2. Paper-2: Corporate Laws & Other Laws
    1. Part I: Company Law
    2. Part II: Other Laws
  3. Paper-3: Cost and Management Accounting
  4. Paper-4: Taxation
    1. Section A: Income-tax Law
    2. Section B: Indirect Taxes

Group 2 includes:

  1. Paper-5: Advanced Accounting
  2. Paper-6: Auditing and Assurance
  3. Paper-7: Enterprise Information Systems & Strategic Management
    1. Part I: Enterprise Information System
    2. Part II: Strategic Management
  4. Paper-8: Financial Management and Economics for finance
    1. Part I: Financial Management
    2. Part II: Economics of Finance

Exam Pattern – The CA Intermediate exam pattern is both subjective and objective. All the 4 papers of both the groups consist of 100 marks each.

Preparation Tips – Don’t neglect the modules given by ICAI. It gives you an idea of questions asked, presentation demanded, and how to answer in the exam. Revise the syllabus properly. Remember, three times revision is a must to clear CA Intermediate. Make a proper study plan for CA Intermediate exams. Complete your course at least two months before exams. Then properly divided the time between revision and practising papers. The thing which most of the students lack in CA Intermediate is Practice. Take out time for solving Mock Test Papers and solve at least past attempts papers before the Exam. Students should prefer the study material that is updated and from a good source.

Passing Criteria – To clear the CA intermediate group, you need to get 40% in each subject or 50% aggregate. You need to clear both the groups to move on to the finals.

Result – The CA Intermediate result is announced after 2 months of the last paper. Students need their login id and password to check their results.

Validity – The CA Intermediate registration validity is 4 years, which means 8 attempts. After that, you need to register again for the exams.

Clearing this level with coaching is really tough, but coaching is necessary too. Hence, you should join a CA Intermediate coaching somewhere which guarantees you to complete the classes within 5-6 months so that you will get enough time for self-study and revision.

3. Enroll for the CA Articleship Training

Candidates can start their CA articleship as soon as they pass any of the groups of CA Intermediate. But before that, they must have to undergo the ITT and OT Program.

Candidates who have appeared in both the groups of CA Intermediate together should try to complete 100 hours of IT training during the waiting period for the CA Inter result. After completing IT, if possible, complete your OT program also. This will save your time after the declaration of the CA Intermediate result. Get all the details about the CA Articleship registration by going through this blog.

The candidates who have appeared in a single group should start preparing for the next group. If you plan articleship and the next group with the office then this will be a tough task and it might take several attempts to clear the second group. Hence, you should complete your CA Intermediate first and then go with Articleship Training.

We have seen that some students go for dummy articleship but they are making a big mistake. Articleship training gives you vast exposure to practical experience. That’s why it is referred to as a direct ticket to the corporate world. So, never ever think of taking a dummy articleship.

The more you sweat in practice, the less you sweat in war”

4. Crack the CA Final Exams

CA Final course details, How to Become a CA in India

The CA Final Course is the last step in the Chartered Accountant course Journey and the biggest challenge. This level requires you to expertise in each and every subject. ICAI wants you to have knowledge of every topic it has included in the course. Check the full details below.

Eligibility – The student needs to clear both the groups of CA Intermediate and also complete the articleship.

Registration – CA Final registration will be done through the ICAI website.

Training – After completing both the groups of CA Intermediate one can register for CA Final. Although, the candidate can appear in CA Final only when he has undergone GMCS and Advanced ITT.

Exam Form – The dates to file the CA Final exam form will be released by the ICAI. Students need to fill out the form on time and don’t wait for the last date.

Syllabus – The CA Final syllabus includes 8 subjects, that is categorized into 2 groups. They are as follows:

Group I

  1. Paper-1: Financial Reporting
  2. Paper-2: Strategic Financial Management
  3. Paper-3: Advanced Auditing and Professional Ethics
  4. Paper-4: Corporate and Economic Laws

Group II

  1. Paper-5: Strategic Cost Management and Performance Evaluation
  2. Paper-6
    1. Paper-6A: Risk Management
    2. Paper-6B: Financial Services and Capital Markets
    3. Paper-6C: International Taxation
    4. Paper-6D: Economic Laws
    5. Paper-6E: Global Financial Reporting Standards
    6. Paper-6F: Multidisciplinary Case Study
  3. Paper-7: Direct Tax Laws and International Taxation
  4. Paper-8: Indirect Tax Laws

Exam Pattern – The CA Final exam pattern is both subjective and objective. Each paper consists of 100 marks. Paper 6 is open-book.

Passing Criteria – To clear the Final Exams, you need to obtain 40% in each subject or 50% aggregate.

Result – The CA Final Result will be released by ICAI, 2 months after the last paper.

Validity – The registration form validity for the finals is 5 years that is 10 attempts.

Thus, it takes around 5 years to become a CA in India after the class 12th, if you clear all your exams in the first attempt. Moreover, the CA course duration after graduation is 4.5 years.

This is the detailed answer to your question on how to become a CA in India? If you’re in school right now or doing graduation, it is better to start planning for your CA Career.

You should also know about the main quality of a Chartered Accountant student, and try to learn and inculcate those.

CA Course Details 2022

Mentioned below is a tabular representation of the complete CA Course including eligibility, registration, subjects, exams, and fees for all three levels.

CA FoundationCA IntermediateCA Final
EligibilityAppear in 12th examsClear foundation or graduation or PGClear intermediate level & practical training
Last date to Register for Nov 2022Before July 1, 2022Before March 1, 2022Before July 1, 2022
Examination heldMay and NovemberMay and NovemberMay and November
Registration Validity3 years (6 attempts)4 years (6 attempts)5 years (10 attempts)
Subjects48 (4 each group)8 (4 each group)
FeesRs 11300Rs 27200/23200Rs 39800

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1. What are the steps to become a CA in India? 

Ans: Steps to become a CA in India are:

  1. Register for the CA Foundation Course.
  2. Register for the CA Intermediate Course
  3. Enrol for the CA Articleship Training
  4. Crack the CA Final exams

Q2. How many years does it take to become a  CA?

Ans: It takes around 5 years to become a CA in India after the class 12th. For graduate students, the minimum time required is 4.5 years.

Q3. Is it easy to become a Chartered Accountant?

Ans: There is no doubt that CA is one of the most difficult courses in India. However, if a student prepares for this exam smartly and with full discipline and dedication, then it can be cleared in the first attempt.

Q4. How many Chartered Accountants are there in India?

Ans: According to the ICAI, there are a total 3,50,000 members registered in the organisation.

Q5. What is the salary of a CA?

Ans: The average salary of a CA ranges between 8 to 10 lakhs per annum.

Q6. Pursuing CA courses is best after 12th or after graduation?

Ans: Candidates can pursue CA courses after 12th and after graduation. It depends upon their preferences when they want to start their courses.