Share this content

Reporting an accountant for shoddy work

Reporting an accountant for shoddy work

Didn't find your answer?

If you were to come across a set of accounts that were horrendously wrong and potentially negigently prepared but the compiler wasnt registered nor qualified in anyway who would you make your report to. 

Replies (41)

Please login or register to join the discussion.

avatar
By Roland195
26th Oct 2021 15:04

What would you be trying to accomplish?

Thanks (4)
avatar
By Wanderer
26th Oct 2021 15:13

Nobody.

Thanks (2)
Replying to Wanderer:
Flag of the Soviet Union
By thevaliant
26th Oct 2021 18:03

To be fair, even if they were registered with a professional body, unless you were the client, I suspect neither CIMA, ACCA nor ICAEW would care either.

Thanks (1)
avatar
By AdamMurphy
26th Oct 2021 15:18

Nobody. I just get on with the future work my new client has instructed me to do.

Thanks (4)
RLI
By lionofludesch
26th Oct 2021 15:25

How did you come across them ?

Is there a suspicion of fraud ?

Have you anything more productive to do ?

Thanks (0)
Replying to lionofludesch:
avatar
By CW2012
26th Oct 2021 15:33

Ex client I'm afraid, lost due to fees, very annoying

Thanks (0)
Replying to CW2012:
RLI
By lionofludesch
26th Oct 2021 16:01

CW2012 wrote:

Ex client I'm afraid, lost due to fees, very annoying

Oh, that happens a lot. There's always someone who'll do a carp job for cheap. Have you never been approached by a fella who's got a bit of tarmac left over from a job up the road and can give you a good price to sort out your drive ?

Thanks (2)
Replying to lionofludesch:
avatar
By CW2012
26th Oct 2021 15:53

I know someone who took up that offer, next morning their car had sunk by about 6 inches on each wheel, had to rip the whole drive up and start again.

Thanks (2)
Replying to CW2012:
Avatar
By I'msorryIhaven'taclue
26th Oct 2021 16:29

One winter we moved to a Barratt's new-build where, first warm and sunny spring day, everyone's drive stuck to their tyres and ripped up. Barratt's had laid an inch of tarmac directly onto the mud.

Thanks (2)
avatar
By justsotax
26th Oct 2021 15:38

as per Roland....what do you hope to achieve....will it improve your or your clients lot.....

Thanks (1)
Replying to justsotax:
avatar
By CW2012
26th Oct 2021 15:42

Nothing I suppose just wanted to vent some frustration, I have seen this a few times over the years and it never changes.

Thanks (0)
Replying to CW2012:
avatar
By Roland195
26th Oct 2021 15:52

I would try to reassure you here with tales of similar examples where a client departs for cheaper fees to the local cowboy, deaf to my warnings of pay peanuts etc only to later on hear through the grapevine that he is now under enquiry with the wife & kids gone & hell men 'em but it's just not true.

Chances are your ex-client will get away with filing whatever rubbish Butch Cassidy cares to throw together, with little consequence.

Thanks (4)
avatar
By GHarr497688
26th Oct 2021 16:13

Unless you had access to the working papers, knew the conversation with the client or could see that the accounts were incorrect how can you prove what you say and even then if the client approves accounts for filing what can you do. This "snitching" is going too far in the modern world.

Thanks (1)
Replying to GHarr497688:
avatar
By CW2012
26th Oct 2021 16:26

The accounts don't make any sense, they are dreadful.

Thanks (0)
Replying to CW2012:
avatar
By GHarr497688
26th Oct 2021 21:34

In what way are they dreadful and why are you sure it’s the Accountant at fault.

Thanks (0)
Replying to GHarr497688:
avatar
By CW2012
27th Oct 2021 09:29

The notes don't agree to the figures in the accounts, the comparatives don't agree to the previous year, the wording makes no sense, I could go on, they are in my top 5 worst accounts, I did pick up a set once from a new client where the figures didn't add up, the accounts had been bodged to get the reserves to balance, they are still my no.1 but these are in right in there.

Thanks (0)
Replying to CW2012:
avatar
By Leywood
27th Oct 2021 15:08

Shame you cannot share the link so we can all have a laugh!

Thanks (0)
Replying to CW2012:
avatar
By Rgab1947
29th Oct 2021 12:58

You spend that much time analysing someone else's work and he is an ex client?

Strange.

Thanks (0)
Scooby
By gainsborough
26th Oct 2021 16:17

Chances are something will go wrong anyway and they'll come back to you in a couple of years pleading with you to fix the errors...

Thanks (1)
avatar
By SXGuy
26th Oct 2021 18:02

I make a rule to never look at ex clients future accounts as a) not my problem anymore and b) not my problem anymore.

While it can be frustrating to lose them the way you have, it doesn't help to wallow in it.

Thanks (2)
Replying to SXGuy:
By Husbandofstinky
29th Oct 2021 13:27

SXGuy wrote:
make a rule to never look at ex clients future accounts

Spot on, even if they begged or incentivised, just walk away. It would never be the same relationship again.

Fact of life, it just happens for whatever reason and there can be many.

Thanks (0)
avatar
By Calculatorboy
27th Oct 2021 02:49

You seem to have a lot of spare time mulling over ex clients accounts .. remember it is an ex client , the client has ceased to exist, it is someone else's client not yours

Thanks (2)
avatar
By JD
27th Oct 2021 10:13

There will always be tyre kickers (if they are not stuck in the tarmac) - Focus on the good clients that appreciate and value what you do, not least for your own sanity

Thanks (1)
avatar
By AnnAccountant
27th Oct 2021 10:35

How do you know that their work is wrong?

Have you considered the possibility that it was your work that was wrong instead? The client did leave you after all

Thanks (0)
Replying to AnnAccountant:
avatar
By CW2012
27th Oct 2021 11:52

avatar
By CW2012
27th Oct 2021 09:29
The notes don't agree to the figures in the accounts, the comparatives don't agree to the previous year, the wording makes no sense, I could go on, they are in my top 5 worst accounts, I did pick up a set once from a new client where the figures didn't add up, the accounts had been bodged to get the reserves to balance, they are still my no.1 but these are in right in there.

Thanks (0)
avatar
By MattS
27th Oct 2021 11:41

This question and the replies to date further demonstrate to me the need for the term accountant to become protected.

Whilst issues facing auditors are discussed often and widely, this issue is sadly not.

Thanks (3)
Replying to MattS:
avatar
By SXGuy
29th Oct 2021 11:32

Care to explain your reasoning?

Thanks (0)
Replying to MattS:
By Husbandofstinky
29th Oct 2021 13:31

And there's no such things as a fully qualified carp accountant....

This in itself is very subjective too.

Caveat emptor. Simples

Thanks (0)
avatar
By taxwizard
27th Oct 2021 12:12

There are just so many cowboys. I have come across a few who is qualified but with the lesser accountancy bodies. His clients pay no taxes but looking at his balance sheet this dodgy accountant has around 600K in the bank account

Thanks (0)
Replying to taxwizard:
By Moonbeam
27th Oct 2021 13:53

I've taken over dodgy accounts/VAT returns compiled by firms of accountants who proudly displayed their ICAEW qualifications everywhere.
When the client complained to previous accountant, he was told he wouldn't get a refund of fees. They blamed it on a junior member of staff.
Forget qualifications and governing bodies. Where they exist there is no proper monitoring or protection of Joe public.

Thanks (3)
Replying to Moonbeam:
avatar
By taxwizard
27th Oct 2021 15:56

Yes I have too at ACCA and ICAEW but its not as common as at levels below these qualifications

Thanks (0)
Replying to taxwizard:
avatar
By Leywood
27th Oct 2021 15:07

Ive seen bookkeepers who are not with any professional body, but considered QBE. Fine.
But then they have strayed into Accountancy, not just self assessments but doing final accounts/CT etc for Limited Companies.

So no longer QBE. Plus working with no supervision.

I suppose they could class themselves as QBO in their heads in a couple of years.

Scary!

Thanks (1)
Replying to Leywood:
avatar
By CW2012
27th Oct 2021 15:13

Funny you should mention that we lost a client to an uprated bookkeeper who asked me who the shareholders were of the company whose accounts they'd just prepared!!

Thanks (0)
Replying to CW2012:
Slim
By Slim
27th Oct 2021 17:53

They've nailed the aml side of things I see.

Thanks (5)
Replying to Slim:
By Husbandofstinky
29th Oct 2021 13:33

Slim wrote:

They've nailed the aml side of things I see.

Quote of the day

Thanks (0)
avatar
By AdamMurphy
27th Oct 2021 13:23

When a client leaves me, I get on with looking after my existing clients. I don't have the spare time to be snooping on what ex clients are getting up to, I couldn't care less.

Thanks (2)
avatar
By Ammie
29th Oct 2021 11:56

Pointless exercise.

I see terrible work from all types, qualifieds and non qualifieds. Just carry out your work as best you can given the circumstances and keep a record of any limitations or consequences to your work should any problems arise further down the line.

If there are legal or compliance consequences then you may need to advise the appropriate authority, otherwise make some decisions and move on.

EDIT:
Just noticed that the client is no longer one. Even more reason not to waste your time.

Thanks (0)
avatar
By Michael Davies
29th Oct 2021 12:09

You do wonder why HMRC don’t put their AML fees up to a punitive level .That would get rid of a lot of unqualified tax consultants.Probably leave a lot of taxpayers stranded without any representation though.

Thanks (1)
Replying to Michael Davies:
By Husbandofstinky
29th Oct 2021 13:43

They are almost the same price as ICAEW practising fees, just for AMLR alone.

Thanks (0)
Replying to Michael Davies:
avatar
By Ralph-gab
08th Nov 2021 11:46

They already have done!

Thanks (0)
avatar
By Ralph-gab
08th Nov 2021 10:12

As one of those non qualified accountants who has been in business for 40 years I have come across dreadful work done by Chartered accountants. In fact I worked for one for 12 months who told me that HMRC weren't interested in prepayments and accruals. One client clearly had debtors and creditors which had previously never been included in accounts ( he wasn't on cash basis). He sacked me ostensibly because he couldn't afford to keep me on, but I think my standards were an embarrassment to him. I made up a folder of errors which included not entering £30k of dividends on a client's return and 2 undeclarations of VAT on the FRS of over 10k, found when we did the annual accounts. The boss's solution was to not tell the client or HMRC but to spread the underdec over the next 4 quarters! Shortly after I left he had a compliance visit from ICAEW who gave him a clean bill of health!!! Also we took over a VAT partially exempt client from the largest firm of chartered accountants in our town some years ago. We noticed that no input VAT restriction had been made on returns, so we asked if de minimis calculations had been done. The reply " No, The client never asked us to."! We also recently took over a guest house where the Chartered accountants showed the property on the BS at £340,000. In fact the purchase was £200k, £100k goodwill and £40 for the equipment, fixtures and fittings, which made a difference to the CA claim. My point here is that yes, there are cowboys but they are among the registered accountants too. PS, I did sign up with CIOT in 2015 hoping to qualify in EU Cross Border VAT and indirect taxes, but then some fool called a referendum.

Thanks (1)
Share this content