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Qualifications for the CVA


Qualifications for CVA Certification
 
For CPAs:
1. Hold an active, valid, and unrevoked CPA license issued by a legally constituted state authority (the Chartered Accountant [CA] designation issued in Canada is equivalent to the CPA in the U.S.).
 
For Non-CPAs:
1a. Hold a business degree (i.e., management, economics, finance, marketing, accounting, or other business field) and/or a masters of business administration (MBA) or higher business degree from an accredited college or university; and

1b.   Be able to demonstrate, with business references or attestations from current or previous employers and/or partners, substantial experience in business valuation. For this purpose, substantial could mean:
  1. Two years or more full-time or equivalent experience in business valuation and related disciplines; or
  2. Having performed 10 or more business valuations where the applicant’s role was significant enough to be referenced in the valuation report or a signatory on the report; or
  3. Being able to demonstrate substantial knowledge of business valuation theory, methodologies, and practices. For example, having a combination of published works on the subject and completed either a PhD in finance or economics or a doctor of business administration (DBA) from an accredited institution of higher education and having some work experience. Or, having obtained an accreditation from another recognized valuation-accrediting organization.
For All Applicants:
 
2. Be a Practitioner member in good standing with NACVA;

3. Successfully demonstrate that applicant meets NACVA’s Experience Threshold by completing a sample Case Study or submitting an actual and sanitized Fair Market Value (FMV) report (FMV as defined by Revenue Ruling 59– 60) prepared in the last 12 months for peer review*;

4.  Attend an "optional" five-day training program;

5. Submit three personal and three business references; and

6. Pass a comprehensive, five-hour, multiple-choice, proctored examination.

An application to take the examination must be submitted prior to issuance of the exam. To hold an active CVA designation, individuals must pay requisite annual fees and comply with tri-annual recertification. CVAs who allow these requirements to lapse will lose their certification and must reapply to become certified if they later choose to reinstate.
 
 
 
 
 
Qualifications for Government Employed Valuators
NACVA offers the CVA certification to government employees under a different set of criteria. To qualify, the applicant must:
  1. Have a four-year college degree, i.e., a minimum of a BA, BS, or similar degree;
  2. Have the combined equivalent of two years of full-time experience in business valuation (BV). BV Experience Requirements must be approved by the applicant’s immediate supervisor or the BV Committee for the applicable government-funded institution;
  3. Have a minimum GS-12 or comparable rating (exceptions will be considered upon written request from a supervisor attesting to the applicant’s qualifications and competency to pursue certification);
  4. Be a Government Employee member in good standing with NACVA;
  5. Be currently employed by a federal or state government agency;
  6. uccessfully demonstrate that applicant meets NACVA’s Experience Threshold by completing a sample Case Study or submitting an actual and sanitized Fair Market Value (FMV) report (FMV as defined by Revenue Ruling 59–60) prepared in the last 12 months for peer review*; 
  7. Attend an "optional" five-day training program; 
  8. Submit three personal and three business references; and 
  9. Pass a comprehensive, five-hour, multiple-choice, proctored examination. 
An application to take the examination must be submitted prior to issuance of the exam. To hold an active CVA designation, individuals must pay requisite annual fees and comply with tri-annual recertification. CVAs who allow these requirements to lapse will lose their certification and must reapply to become certified if they later choose to reinstate.
 
Denial of Qualifications
An applicant who has been advised by NACVA staff that they do not qualify to sit for the CVA exam may appeal to the Valuation Credentialing Board (VCB). Appeals, or exception requests, may also be made under this policy by individuals whose Candidate status is expiring and who feel significant extenuating circumstances warrant an extension of the Candidate period. This appeal should be in writing, along with the applicant’s reasoning as to why they do qualify, and any documentation to assist the VCB in making a determination. The data should be faxed or e-mailed to the current Chairperson of the VCB. This contact information is posted on NACVA’s website or can be obtained by calling NACVA’s Executive Director. The appeal will be reviewed by the VCB, or its designated sub-committee, and a recommendation will be placed on the agenda for the next VCB meeting for consideration by the full Board. The VCB, at its discretion, may follow-up with the applicant to request additional information; as such, the applicant should be sure to include all relevant information with the initial appeal. The Chairperson will advise the applicant and NACVA’s Director of Member/Client Services of the VCB’s decision.
 
CVA Exam and Applied Experience
The certification process consists of two parts: Part One (testing knowledge) is the proctored portion, Part Two (evaluating applied experience) is a take-home/in-office Case Study. The five-hour proctored exam consists of multiple-choice questions, testing applicants on NACVA’s Business Valuation Body of Knowledge. The exam is administered at the conclusion of each five-day training program NACVA sponsors throughout the country, or at local proctoring facilities NACVA has contracted with nationwide for the applicants’ convenience. Part Two is a 60-80 hour sample Case Study provided by NACVA and requires the completion of a comprehensive business valuation report (see Experience Alternative for Case Study below). Applicants have 60 days to complete and submit the Case Study portion of the exam, starting from the date they take the proctored exam. Candidates are notified of proctor exam results within two weeks; and within two to four months for the Case Study. Either Part One or Part Two of the exam, if failed, may be retaken for a modest fee to cover postage, copying, grader’s fees, etc. Certain time restrictions apply. (NACVA’s Exam Facilitator can provide more details on the process.)
 
Experience Alternative for Case Study
CVA applicants are required to demonstrate that they meet NACVA’s Experience Threshold by completing a sample Case Study or submitting a sanitized Fair Market Value (as defined by Revenue Ruling 59-60) business valuation report on an operating business, prepared in the last 12 months, representative of the practitioner’s work product. The Case Study Experience Threshold requirement is reviewed using a standardized scoring key developed by a committee of NACVA subject matter experts and approved by the VCB. A fee must be submitted along with the application, and the applicant must be either a current Practitioner (or Academic or Government) member of NACVA prior to consideration for waiver, or have paid the applicable CVA application fee.

Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA) candidates with substantial experience in the field of business valuation may qualify to waive NACVA’s prerequisite for demonstrating they meet NACVA’s Experience Threshold, currently requiring that one either take our Case Study or submit an actual valuation report. Proof of substantial experience is automatic if one possesses either the Certified Business Appraiser™ (CBA™), Master Certified Business Appraiser™ (MCBA™), or Accredited Senior Appraiser (ASA) (for business valuation) designations awarded by the Institute of Business Appraisers or American Society of Appraisers, respectively. This is because both accreditations have a report submission requirement that undergoes a critical review and grading process which one must pass before being awarded the designation. Presently, NACVA will only consider those possessing one or more of the aforementioned designations for waiver of this requirement. If a candidate wishes to pursue this avenue to CVA accreditation, he or she must submit a letter and supporting documentation to the VCB requesting such waiver. The VCB may request additional information. Under no circumstances, will NACVA waive the requirement for candidates to take and pass our proctored multiple choice exam. Please allow up to 60 days for the VCB to review and respond to waiver requests.

Examination and Experience Threshold Determination Appeals
Members may appeal an unsatisfactory review of the Case Study as to meeting the Experience Threshold and/or a failed determination on their exam. The process of appeal follows three steps (modest administrative and grading fees may apply).

First Step: The member’s first step is to contact NACVA’s Exam Facilitator. At the applicant’s request, multiple-choice exams may be hand-scored to ensure accurate grading. Many issues regarding the Case Study and/or valuation report can be resolved at this level as in most cases, the Case/Report will be reviewed for a second or third opinion (depending on the situation).

Second Step: If the response from step one regarding the Case Study is not satisfactory, the member should call the Chair of the Exam and Grading Committee who will deliberate the matter with members of the Committee and render a decision accordingly. The Committee Chair changes periodically, so please call NACVA to obtain the correct contact information.

Third Step: If step one and step two resulted in what the member considers an unsatisfactory resolution, he or she should put the facts, as the member perceives them, in writing and e-mail or fax them to the Chair of the VCB requesting review. The Chair will place the complaint on the agenda for full Board consideration and assign a Board member to review the complaint and to offer a solution to the Board as a whole. The assigned Board member may contact the member who filed the appeal for more information if it is thought that the written document does not have enough detail to make a well-considered decision. The assigned Board member may contact the reviewer(s) involved for additional information. The assigned Board member will present the case to the full Board for resolution. The Chair will advise the member, by e-mail or by fax, as to the resolution and decision made by the Board. The VCB’s decision is final.
 
* See Experience Alternative for Case Study