Is it acceptable to ask the outgoing agent for more than one year's records ?
Yes, though not often necessary. If it is necessary then I don't see how it could be considered unacceptable.
.....why would incoming accountant think it necessary to ask for more than one year's records ?
So that they can redo yours?
you could always ask them, couldn't you?
I have asked, and this was the reply :
'I have started to ask for two years because I have had issues with recent new clients which has meant that I have needed to look back a bit further than the previous year. In most cases I don’t really need it'.
Seems a bit impertinent, but I guess that's where we are as a profession these days !
Of course, you can politely and simply provide the information, which you're prepared to supply.
In the Farming industry we have 2/5 year averaging, therefore we ask for the prior 4 years tax returns (for farming clients) as a matter of course now.
It's acceptable to ask for whatever you like. On occasion we do have a new accountant ask for 3 years (together with lots and lots of other stuff). I'm sure it's just a standard, virtually always OTT template. We tend to just provide what we think they'll need (most recent year's accounts/CT600/SA100, trial balance, and handful of supporting schedules/references) and suggest if there's anything specific beyond that to ask. They rarely come back.
IMO it is perfectly reasonable to ask for more than 1 year records and there may be many reasons why the incoming account might want to see these. We usually ask for 2 years records in cases where we are preparing an R&D claim for the client and need to revisit the previously filed CT600 to include the enhanced expenditure.
I always just asked for 1, but then started getting asked for 2 even 3. I now ask for 2 and see what happens. Don’t think I’ve ever used the 2nd (or 1st, depending how you look at it).
For farming clients you'll need to ask for the last 4 years' tax returns because of 5-year averaging
There is an accountant near me who has asked for six years on both occasions I have passed a client over!!
I tend to send them the last year only and they haven't yet got back to me to ask for more. If they had asked for two years I probably would have sent it but six years is taking the p***.