Qualified or Unqualified: The Right to be an Accountant. By Anthony Margaritelli
As Chairman of the ICPA I wrote in the September 2008 issue of “Accounting Practice” that the campaign to restrict the use of the word Accountant led by the ICAEW was not about protecting the public but about protecting the interests of their own members.
The response to my article was both supportive and sincere.
The ICAEW have finally made a public statement of their intentions in this whole matter.
In the October 2008 Issue of “Accountancy” the following is announced by an ICAEW council member:
“We need to build the evidence base in order to provide the institute with the information it needs to be able to make representation on our behalf.
Are you a Chartered Accountant? Do you have specific examples of bad practice among unqualified accountants, particularly ones where you have been called in to sort out the mess?
If the answer is yes, you can send these to me and I will ensure that these examples are collated and put to good use as we try to make progress on this issue.”
The ICPA have been at the forefront of the campaign to counter the claims of any one Institute to the right to be able to be called an Accountant and we feel that the ICAEW have to be confronted.
Therefore as Chairman of the ICPA I put it to every non Chartered Accountant that:
Are you a non Chartered Accountant? Do you have specific examples of bad practice among Chartered Accountants, particularly ones where you have been called in to sort out the mess?
If the answer is yes, you can send these to me and I will ensure that these examples are collated and put to good use.”
Please email me at [email protected] or write to me at Imperial House, 1a Standen Avenue, Hornchurch, Essex RM12 6AA.
I will ensure that your responses are put to good use.
The ICAEW view is that there can’t be many such instances else surly they would be reported to the ICAEW Disciplinary Board and a review of the cases would show that this is not the case.
The same can be said for the ICPA Disciplinary Board which I have reviewed and based on this review I would draw the same conclusion.
However, practitioners of all kinds are mainly pragmatic people and clients, especially new clients, see little mileage in making formal complaints to Institutes about Accountants they have just left even if there is the possibility of financial recompense.
Bad work is NOT restricted to non ICAEW Accountants.
To try to restrict the use of the name Accountant to their members under the banner of the “Public Interest” when the reality is to benefit their members casts the ICAEW in a different light.
All Non Chartered Accountants should be very wary of developments in this matter because if successful do we believe that the ICAEW will allow AAT, FFA, ATT practitioners the use of the work? I think not.
There are good Accountants and there are bad Accountants and no examination or Institute has a monopoly on either.
Anthony Margaritelli – Chairman ICPA