Previous accountant withholding primary records

Hi - thank you in advance for all advice.

I have two clients who have moved on from previous accountants and have not been able to get primary records back from them - ie bank statements, invoices, receipts, sales records etc.

In both cases, I highly suspect but cannot be certain that neither accountant was a member of a professional body.  In one case the accountant has refused to pass back records until fees are settled.  The client disputes the fees (naively agreed without written contract) and also suspects that the accountant has not maintained the bookkeeping as agreed.  

My understanding is that the accountant can withhold the bookkeeping as this relates to the work he was paid to undertake but cannot withhold the primary records.

Can anyone confirm this?  

Comments
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That is my understanding

Jimess |

Agree with Jimess

nigelburge |
nigelburge's picture

I've felt the need to use professional lien twice....

Trevor Scott |