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Practising certificate

AAT and ACCA member looking to set up self employed business

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Hello

I have around 15 years experience of working in practice during which time I have become AAT and ACCA qualified. 
 

I am currently thinking of becoming self employed offering bookkeeping services including VAT returns and payroll. 
 

However, I am unsure of the practicing certificate requirements. I have looked at the ACCA website and they say I don't need a certificate to offer basic bookkeeping services or payroll. However, to submit VAT returns electronically would require me to act as an agent and therefore wouldn't be allowed without a practicing certificate. 

If I obtained a certificate with AAT, how would this affect my ACCA membership? As long as I made no reference to clients that I was ACCA qualified would ACCA  allow me to practice under AAT rules, or would I have to resign?
 

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By Sarah Z
16th Aug 2020 23:10

You would have to resign ACCA in this case.

Why don't you call them and ask what your options are?

If you have 15 years in practice, can you not get an ACCA practising certificate?

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Replying to Sarah Z:
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By Tobywhiteuk
16th Aug 2020 23:55

Sarah Z wrote:

You would have to resign ACCA in this case.

Why don't you call them and ask what your options are?

If you have 15 years in practice, can you not get an ACCA practising certificate?

No, I don’t work for an ACCA approved company and the directors aren’t particularly approachable/supportive so I wouldn’t want to ask for their help.

Thanks for the reply.

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By jonock
17th Aug 2020 10:54

You would not have to resign from ACCA. I didn't in a similar situation.
My first practising certificate was from AAT, ACCA were aware that I had it and told me as long as I didn't use ACCA on anything that was relying on the certificate it was acceptable. However, there were some issues with the AAT certificate as not every mortgage lender recognised it. Eventually I upgraded to the full ACCA practising certificate but that was much harder to get, took over a year so the AAT would allow you to trade. Sadly I did eventually resign my AAT membership as once I had the ACCA certificate I didn't need the extra set of subs and restrictions. Keep both parties informed, ACCA team are immensely helpful.

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Replying to jonock:
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By Richard Grant
18th Aug 2020 14:28

Having spoken to ACCA about the same thing they told me that if I practiced under another bodies cert (even if I didn't mention ACCA anywhere ) it would be a disciplinary matter so I would be interested to know more. I spoke to them about 12 months ago.

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By SallyT
25th Aug 2020 09:45

I was in similar situation.
I eventually resigned from ACCA, which was a really tough decision considering the work it took to become qualified and how proud I was of my qualification.
But in the end AAT gave me what I needed for the work I wanted to do, whereas ACCA didn't!
TBH, most clients don't know the difference between a ACCA qualified or an AAT qualified accountant.

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