22/05/24

Institute of Chartered Accountants | ICAEW

Institute of Chartered Accountants | ICAEW
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The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (‘ICAEW’) is a professional membership organisation which promotes, develops, and supports chartered accountants and students.

To become an ICAEW Chartered Accountant, the ACA qualification is required which encompasses professional development, ethics and professional scepticism, accountancy, finance and business modules and practical work experience.

ICAEW strives to protect the public by monitoring the quality of work conducted by its firms and members and can impose restrictions and penalties and, in extreme cases, exclusion from membership.

Regulatory and disciplinary responsibilities are conducted by the Professional Standards Department. Where the ICAEW’s professional standards have been breached, it will investigate, and take such regulatory action appropriate to the nature of the allegations made.

John Veale of KANGS outlines the ICAEW complaints process.

ICAEW Complaints Process

When a complaint is made to the ICAEW, it will initially assess whether there are grounds for the complaint, consider any evidence and ascertain whether the person against whom the complaint is made has been the subject of any disciplinary process.

Those complaints which have not arisen from a breach of the professional standards, such as a fee dispute or minor error by the chartered accountant, will be rejected and the complainant will be advised to seek their own legal advice.

Complaints which may be resolved by the accountant or firm without disciplinary action may be referred for conciliation if both parties agree.

Where the evidence suggests that there may be a case to answer, the complaint will be referred to the Conduct Committee.

Additionally, the matter may be passed to the Fitness to Practise Committee to determine whether the subject of the allegation is fit to participate in disciplinary proceedings.

The Conduct Committee

The Conduct Committee may determine that there is no case to answer. In specific circumstances, the complainant may seek a Case File Review.

Where the Conduct Committee decides that there is a Case to Answer, it may:

  • decide to take no further action,
  • invite the subject of the complaint to accept a caution,
  • invite the subject of the complaint to consent to an order,
  • refer the complaint to the Tribunal Committee.

The parties will not be able to put further representations before the Conduct Committee; it will make its decisions on the facts placed before the investigation.

Tribunals Committee

The complainant and the accused will have an opportunity to put forward any further evidence they would like the panel to consider. The Tribunal Committee will consider all the available evidence and reach a majority decision.

Having considered all representations and evidence, this Committee may:

  • dismiss the case, bringing an end to the matter,
  • impose a fine,
  • issue a reprimand,
  • suspend a Practicing Certificate,
  • impose exclusion from ICAEW membership,
  • issue a requirement to undertake specific training.

Appeals

If permission to appeal is granted, an appeal may be heard from the decisions of both the Fitness to Practise Committee and the Tribunals Committee. The Appeal Committee may either overturn or agree with the decisions under appeal.

How Can We help?

The Team at KANGS regularly assists fellow professionals who are faced with allegations of professional misconduct. We understand that any form of disciplinary action, including one conducted by ICAEW will be highly distressing given the potential consequences of any adverse outcome.

If we can be of any assistance at all, we are here to help, please contact us using the details below:

Tel:       0333 370 4333

Email: info@kangssolicitors.co.uk

We provide initial no obligation discussion at our three offices in London, Birmingham, and Manchester. Alternatively, discussions can be held through live conferencing or telephone.

Hamraj Kang

Hamraj Kang
Senior Partner

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John Veale

John Veale
Partner

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Tim Thompson

Tim Thompson
Partner

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