CODE OF ETHICS
This Code of Ethics is directed primarily at ensuring and safeguarding the
quality of services provided by members of The Society of Professional
Accountants of Canada (R.P.A.) to the public it serves; and to achieving
and maintaining courteous and professional conduct among its members.
This Code of Ethics provides a set of standards which members and students are to
regard as a minimum level of acceptable professional conduct. The Code specifies
the minimum standard of professional conduct among its members.
Secondly, it provides to the public assurances that The Society of Professional
Accountants of Canada is imposing on its members standards by which it will be judged.
The Code, further provides to clients, employers and the general public a standard
against which a member's performance may be assessed.
Finally, the Code of Ethics forms the basis of disciplinary procedures by which
allegations of professional misconduct are addressed.
Section 100 - Definitions
In this Code, unless otherwise specified, the following terms mean:
A person who has been accepted into the membership of
The Society of Professional Accountants and registered in accordance with
Article 111 of the by-laws.
A person accepted by the Society to undertake the
approved study program and paid the appropriate fees.
SPAC: The Society of Professional Accountants of Canada.
Provincial: The Society of Professional Accountants of any province or territory.
The profession of accountancy.
The auditor's report that accompanies audited financial statements to which
a member lends his name.
Remarks accompanied by a disclaimer signed by or identified with the
accountant, which makes it clear that he is not expressing an
opinion, where such remarks relate to unaudited financial statements.
Public Accountant - Ontario
Any person licensed under the Public Accountancy Act of Ontario
Public Accounting - Ontario
Includes offering to perform or performing for a client those types of
services as identified in Sections 24 and 25 of the Public Accountancy
Act. R.S.O. 1980, c. 405, s24 quoted hereunder:
Subject to the provisions of this section, no person
who is not licensed under this Act shall, within Ontario,
- take or use the name or title of "Public Accountant" or its equivalent in any other language;
- practice as a public accountant; or
- hold himself, herself or itself out as being licensed as a public accountant or use any designation or initials indicating or implying that the person is licensed as a public accountant. R.S.O. 1980, c. 405, s. 24(1), revised.
Despite anything in this section, the Council may permit any
person who is a non-resident of Ontario to practice as a public
accountant within Ontario without a licence under this Act, subject
to any terms and conditions that may from time to time be prescribed.
R.S.O. 1980, c. 405, s. 24(2).
Any person who contravenes any provision of this section,
without prejudice to any other proceedings that may be taken,
is guilty of an offence and on conviction is liable to a fine of
not more than $10,000 for a first offence and to a fine or not more
than $25,000 for any subsequent offence. 1989, c. 72, s. 15(4).
Where a contravention of this section by any person is occasioned
by the fact that the person's licence has been revoked, it is a
good defense to any proceedings in respect of such contravention to
prove that, at the time when such contravention is alleged to have
been committed, notice of the revocation had not been served in
accordance with this Act or the regulations hereunder, or that the
time for appealing from the revocation had not expired or an appeal
therefrom had been brought and had not been determined. R.S.O.
1980, c. 405, s. 24(4).
It is not lawful for a body corporate to practice as a public
accountant and any body corporate that contravenes the provisions
of this subsection, without prejudice to any other proceedings
that may be taken, is guilty of an offence and on conviction is
liable to a fine of not more than $10,000 for a first offence and
to a fine of not more than $25,000 for any subsequent offence.
1989, c. 72, s. 15(5).
If a body corporate is guilty of an offence under subsection
(1), every director or officer of the body corporate who consented
to, or connived at or was responsible for the commission of the
offence shall be deemed to be a party to and guilty of the offence
and is liable to be proceeded against and fined accordingly. R.S.O.
1980, c. 405, s. 25(2).
Masculine pronouns when used herein also include the feminine.
A proprietorship, partnership or corporation engaged in public accounting
Statements and footnotes related thereto that purport to show financial
position that relates to a point in time, or results of operations, or
changes in financial position that relate to a period of time, including
statements that a cash or other basis of accounting. The term includes
balance sheets, income statements, statements of retained earnings, statement
of changes in financial position and statements of changes in owners' equity,
but does not include incidental financial data included in management advisory
services reports to support recommendations to a client.
GENERAL PRINCIPLES - 200
The general principles of acceptable professional conduct required of a member
of The Society of Professional Accountants are as follows: A member or
2.01 shall observe the laws of Canada and the Province of Ontario, and shall
act with integrity in his dealings with the public and with other members
of the Society.
2.02 shall conduct himself at all times in both private life and
professional practice in a manner that will maintain the good reputation
and integrity of the profession and the Society of Professional Accountants
and their ability to serve the public interest.
2.03 shall perform his professional services with integrity, good faith
and due care and shall maintain his professional competence by keeping
informed of, and complying with developments in, professional standards.
2.04 has a duty of confidence in respect of the affairs of any client
and shall not disclose, without proper cause, any information obtained in
the course of one's duties, nor shall he in any way exploit such information
to his advantage.
2.05 The development of a member's practice shall be founded upon a
reputation for professional excellence.
2.06 A member shall not solicit for employment any employee in the firm
of a fellow Member without the knowledge of the fellow Member.
2.07 A member should never publicly criticize another member or express
an opinion of another member's work unless requested professionally to do
so in writing by one of the parties to the transaction or their solicitor
or any court and their opinion should be consistent with strict professional
courtesy and integrity.
2.08 A member shall act in relationship to any other member with the
courtesy and consideration due between professional colleagues and which,
in turn; the member would wish to be accorded by the other member.
GENERAL STANDARDS OF CONDUCT - 300
3.01 Shall comply with the bylaws, regulations and Code of Ethics of
The Society of Professional Accountants, as they may be constituted from
time to time and with any order or resolution of the Board of Directors
of The Society of Professional Accountants.
3.02 Shall conduct himself at all times in a manner which will maintain
the good reputation of the profession of accounting and of the Society
of Professional Accountants of Canada.
3.03 Shall safeguard the interest of his client, employer and the
general public by:
- performing his professional work with integrity, good faith and due care
- being competent, conscientious, knowledgeable, diligent, efficient and independent
3.04 Shall state clearly to his client the nature and scope of his services
to be rendered in an engagement letter.
3.05 Shall maintain his professional competence by keeping informed of,
and complying with developments in professional standards in all areas
of his practice, or relied upon because of his profession.
3.06 Shall not undertake an engagement without honestly feeling competent
to perform it, or be able to become competent without delay, or where it
would be in the best interest of the employer or client, engage, or
otherwise advise the employer or client to seek the assistance of other
3.07 Shall exercise due professional care in the performance of an engagement.
3.08 Shall take all reasonable steps, in arranging any engagement as
a consultant, to establish a clear understanding of the scope and
objectives of the work before it is commenced and shall furnish to the
client an estimate of cost, preferably before the engagement is
commenced, but in any event as soon as possible thereafter.
3.09 Shall, while holding property in trust, keep the necessary records
to show that the property has been properly administered.
3.10 Shall retain documentation and working papers which reasonably
evidence the nature and scope of the work done in respect of any
professional engagement, for a reasonable time after completing
(ii) PROFESSIONAL INTEGRITY and INDEPENDENCE
3.11 Shall provide services independently, impartially and without
bias in an informed manner and should under no circumstances have
any financial or other interest which may be affected directly or
indirectly by the provision of such service.
3.12 Shall not express an opinion on financial statements before assessing
his relationship with his client to determine whether in fact he is
independent, objective and unbiased and that this independence would
appear to be so to others who have full knowledge of the facts.
3.13 Shall when preparing financial statements or expressing an opinion
on financial statements which are intended to inform management only,
shall disclose all material facts known to him in order not to make
financial statements misleading, acquire sufficient information to warrant
an expression of opinion and report all material misstatements or
departures from generally accepted accounting principles.
(iii) ACCOUNTANT'S COMMENTS
3.14 A member shall, when submitting an accountant's comments with
an unaudited financial statement, disclose on each page of such
financial statement that it has been prepared without audit.
CONFIDENTIALITY - 400
4.01 A member shall hold in strict confidence all information concerning
the business and affairs of a client acquired in the course of a
professional relationship. No such information shall be disclosed to
others except with the consent of such client or where required by law to do so.
4.02 Shall inform his employer or client of any business connections,
affiliations or interests of which his employer or client would reasonably
expect to be informed, but this does not necessarily include disclosure
of professional services that a member may be rendering or proposing
to render to other clients.
4.03 Shall not, in the course of exercising his duties on behalf of
his employer or client, hold, receive, bargain for or acquire any fee,
remuneration or benefit without his employer's or client's knowledge and consent;
FEES - 500
A member in Public Accounting:
5.01 Shall provide a written contract or, at least an oral agreement,
between himself and the client, stating explicitly the nature and scope
of the engagement, timing of the reports and his fees.
5.02 Shall not reduce a fee which the member has already quoted to a
client, in order to gain an advantage over another member whose quotation
has been made known to him.
5.03 Shall not offer his professional services for a fee, which is
contingent on the result of such services.
5.04 Shall not attempt to gain an advantage over other members by
paying or accepting commissions in securing professional work.
5.05 Shall uphold the principle of adequate compensation for
professional accounting work.
ADVERTISING - 600
6.01 Shall be permitted to advertise only in an objective, informative,
tasteful and professionally dignified manner.
6.02 Shall not advertise, directly or indirectly, in any manner:
- which the member knows, or should know, is false or misleading
- which contravenes professional good taste or fails to uphold normal professional courtesy
- which makes unfavourable reflections on the competence or integrity of the profession, the Society of Professional Accountants or any member thereof, or
- which involves a statement, the contents of which he cannot substantiate
DISCIPLINARY ACTION AND PROCEDURES - 700
A member shall be subject to disciplinary action for any offence which constitutes a
breach of professional conduct.
Disciplinary action against any member may be taken in the event of any violation
of specific provisions of the Society of Professional Accountants' Articles,
By-Laws or Code of Ethics or the spirit and intent set forth therein.
Disciplinary actions are under the jurisdiction of the Ethics Committee and the
Board of Directors of the Society of Professional Accountants.
Section 1. Eligibility for Membership
Section 2. Application for Membership
- Be of good character; and
- be not less than eighteen years of age and
- Have passed academic examinations of the Society and met the experience requirements prescribed by the Board of Directors
- Received a license to practice as a public accountant under the provisions of any Act in Canada or
- Such other provisions that the Board may determine from time to time.
Applicants for membership shall file with the Registrar, applications in writing,
on forms approved by the Board of Directors and accompanied by payment of the
admission fee and one year's membership dues, such fees and dues to be returned
to the applicant in the event of his application being rejected by the Board of Directors.
Section 3. Election of Members
Any person eligible for election to membership within the meaning of Section 1. for
this Article 111, may be elected a member of the Society by a majority vote of the
Directors present and voting at any meeting of the Board.
Section 4. Withdrawal from Membership
A member may at any time withdraw from membership of the Society by giving written
notice of withdrawal to the Registrar and surrendering his/her certificate of membership.
Section 5. Effect of Death
On the death of a member, membership in the Society shall cease.
Section 6. Expulsion and Suspension of Members
Section 7. Notice to Members
Any member of the Society who fails, for a period of three months after they
become due and payable, to pay any dues, fees or assessments fixed by the By-laws
of the Society or the Board shall automatically suspended from membership of the
Society. Such suspension shall continue until such member has made good his
default, or until his membership shall have been terminated by expulsion or
Any member of the Society may be expelled from membership by a majority vote
of the Directors present and voting at meeting of the Board, who fails, for
a period of six months after they become due and payable, to pay any dues, fees
of assessments fixed by the By-laws of the Society or by the Board; provided that
no member shall be expelled upon such ground until he has been notified by the
Secretary that he may be expelled for such default, and a period of ten (10) days
from the giving of such notice has elapsed and the member has failed to make
good his default.
Any member of the Society may be expelled or suspended from membership by
a majority vote of the Directors present and voting at a meeting of the Board,
who has violated any By-law of the Society, any Rule of the Professional conduct
(Code of Ethics) of the Society as may be in force from time to time or has
conducted himself in a manner unbecoming an Accountant or in a manner detrimental
to the interest of the Society or the good repute of the members; provided that
no member shall be suspended or expelled on any such ground until the Board
has considered any representations he may wish to make in person or in writing
within ten days after the Secretary shall have given such member notice stating
the cause of the Board's intention to suspend or expel such member.
Counsel at any investigation of the Board may represent no member or other
person, unless the board grants permission in writing to that effect. This
provision is not to be construed as to prevent the Board to permit the legal
counsel of the Society on the request and decision of a majority of the
Directors attending and voting for such purpose to attend such meeting and
to give his advice.
Any member of this Society shall be expelled if he/she is affiliated with
any political group, which is proclaimed by the Government of Canada to be
He/she shows racial, religious or political prejudice towards any member
of the Society.
He uses this Society for disseminating racial, religious or political
Any notice to be given to members under this Article may effectually be given by
mailing the same to him by prepaid registered post at his address as entered in the
books of the Society or at his last known place of business or residence.
LICENSED PUBLIC ACCOUNTANTS
RULES FOR LICENSED MEMBERS CONDUCTING PUBLIC ACCOUNTING PRACTICE
1.1 Definition of Member in the Practice of Public Accounting
For the purpose of Public Accounting, a Member is a Registered
Member who is Practicing Public Accounting in accordance with
provincial legislation either as a proprietor, a partner in a
partnership or a corporation if provincial legislation permits.
1.2 Definition of Practice of Public Accounting
Practice of Public Accounting means carrying on public practice in
one or more of the following areas:
the performance of services which include causing to be
prepared, signed and issued any financial accounting or
related statement; or
the issue of any written opinion, report or certificate
concerning any such statement, where, by reason of the
circumstances or of the signature stationary or wording
employed, it is indicated that any such Member acts or
purports to act in relation to such statement, opinion,
report or certificate as an independent accountant, auditor or
a Member having or purporting to have knowledge in accounting
or accounting matters but does not include a Member who engages
only in bookkeeping or cost accounting or in the installation
of bookkeeping, business or cost systems; or
accounting, insofar as it involves analysis, advice and
interpretation, but excluding record keeping and management
taxation, insofar as it involves advice and counseling,
but excluding mechanical processing of tax returns.
1.3 Definition of Management Consulting
Management Consulting includes investigating and identifying management
and business issues related to the policy, organizational, operational,
financial, administrative or technical aspects of organizations and
recommending appropriate solutions to the identified business issues.
1.4 Other Definitions
For the purposes of other terms used in these Rules, the preceding
Code of Ethics and by-laws of The Society of Professional Accountants
of Canada should be used as a reference.
2.1 Registration of the Practice of Public Accounting
2.1.1 A Member engaged in, or entering into the Practice of
Public Accounting must register with the Society.
2.1.2 Each Member intending to engage in the Practice of Public
Accounting will give written notice thereof to the Secretary
as provided in sub-section 3.1.3 at least fifteen (15) days prior
to the date on which the Member commences the Practice of Public
Accounting, which is understood to be the date the Member is
formally engaged, either in writing or verbally, by the member's
2.1.3 A written notice under sub-section 3.1.2 will be in the form
of a letter signed by the Member stating:
- the name under which the practice operates;
- the legal status of the practice will be carried on;
- the Registered Member's name(s);
- the style of letterhead and business card to be used; and
- a detailed description of practice of public accounting services to be offered.
2.1.4 Acknowledgement confirming Practice of Public Accounting
registration from the Society must be received in order to be registered.
2.1.5 If a change occurs in any information contained in a notice
given under sub-section 3.1.3 including a cessation of the Practice
of Public Accounting, the Member will give written notice of the
change to the Executive Director within fifteen (15) days from the
date of the change.
2.2.0 Practice of Public Accounting Firm Names
A Member will not engage in the Practice of Public
Accounting under a name or style which is misleading as to
the nature of the organization (proprietorship, partnership
or, where permitted, corporation) or the nature of the
Firm Name of A Sole Proprietorship
A Member shall, if engaged in the Practice of Public Accounting
as a sole proprietor, practice under the descriptive style
Registered Professional Accountant under the member's own
name. The addition of "& Co" or other similar term is permitted
only where the Member employs staff with professional accounting
Firm Name of Partnership
A Member shall, if engaged in the Practice of Public Accounting
in a partnership, practice under the descriptive style
Registered Professional Accountants, where the firm name
consists of one or more surnames of the partners, former
partners or predecessors, and then only if all active partners
are Members. The number of surnames should not exceed the
number of active partners.
Partnerships or professional corporations owned by at least
one non-member will be carried on under the descriptive style
of "Public Accountant(s)".
- MEMBER'S OFFICE
Operation of a member's office
Each office in a Province of any member, or firm of Members engaged in
the Practice of Public Accounting will be under the personal charge
and management of a member. The Member will physically attend at that
location as often as is necessary to effectively render or supervise
the rendering of services in the Practice of Public Accounting at
Proprietary interest with non-members
Each office in a Province of any firm engaged in the Practice of
Public Accounting and composed of one or more Members sharing
proprietary interest with other public accountants who are not Members,
will practice under the style of "Public Accountants", and will be under
the personal charge and management of a Member or other public
accountant. This member, or public accountant, will physically attend
at that location as often as is necessary to effectively render or
supervise the rendering of services in the Practice of Public
Accounting at that location.
Member responsible for non-members
A Member engaged in the Practice of Public Accounting who is associated
with non-members in such practice will be responsible to the Society
for any failure of such non-members, in respect of such practice, to
abide by the Rules of Professional Conduct of the Society. In the
application of this rule, the other rules are deemed to apply to such
non-member as if he or she was a Member engaged in the Practice of
3.1.0 Standards of Practice
A Member expressing an opinion on financial statements or other financial information, or
otherwise associated with financial statements or other financial information, will comply
with the standards and practices of the profession of accounting related thereto, including
without limitation those specified in the Accounting and Auditing Recommendations as
contained in the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CICA) Handbook as
amended from time to time.
3.1.2 A Member will not accept or continue to perform any services in
the Practice of Public Accounting unless he has:
successfully completed within one year of public accounting
registration, the educational requirements as determined by the Board
from time to time, unless on good or sufficient grounds the Board will
exempt him therefrom. The educational requirements are attendance at:
"R.P.A. in Public Practice"; which includes the following sessions:
- "File Preparation and Documentation"; and
- Where the Member is performing audits, a course on audit techniques;
participated in the Society's mentoring process which is comprised of:
the assignment of a mentor by the Society; and
a review of any financial or accounting related statements
by the mentor, prior to its release to the public.
The mentoring process will conclude upon either the successful
review by the Public Practice Review Committee, or as otherwise
determined by the Public Practice Review Committee
3.1.3 Any Member registered in the Practice of Public Accounting at the time
the by-laws are amended, is exempt from 3.1.2, unless otherwise determined by
the Public Practice Review Committee.
3.1.4 A Member undertaking his first audit engagement will be required to
participate in the Society's mentoring process as defined in 3.1.2(b)
All Members in the Practice of Public Accounting must carry professional liability
Insurance with respect to the following guidelines:
provide minimum coverage of $300,000 per occurrence for each
active Member and non-member partner or $1,200,000 per occurrence for
each firm having 5 or more active Members and non members; and
have a deductible which is not greater than 5% of the amount of
provide that the minimum coverage be available in respect of all
claims made five (5) years following the date that a Member ceases to be
a practicing member.
3.3.0 Fees Related to the Practice of Public Accounting
A Member engaged in or entering into the Practice of Public
Accounting must pay an annual Public Practice fee as determined by
the Board from time to time.
A Member registered in the Practice of Public Accounting as a
member of one of the other recognized Professional Accounting bodies
will not be required to pay the Society's annual public practice fee.
A Member registered in the Practice of Public Accounting may be
assessed some or all of the costs reasonably incurred in a practice
review. The practitioner will pay 50% of the regularly scheduled 3
year cycle review, and the practitioner is responsible for 100% of the
costs related to any follow-up reviews.
A Member that is mentored may be assessed some or all of the costs
reasonably incurred by the mentor. The practitioner will pay 50% of the
costs related to the mentoring process.
FAILURE TO MAINTAIN INSURANCE COVERAGE OR PAY FEES
4.0.1 Where a Member in the Practice of Public Accounting has either failed
to maintain the required level of insurance, as defined in Section 3.2.0, or
has failed to pay fees, as defined In Section 33.0, the matter will be referred
to the Professional Conduct Committee. The Professional Conduct Committee will:
where non-payment of fees as is defined in Section 3.3.0 is in
issue, may make such arrangements with respect to fees as it considers
appropriate, including waiving fees in cases of financial hardship,
making arrangements for payment over time, or requiring fees to be paid
immediately. In all cases of non-compliance concerning the failure to
maintain the required level of insurance, or
furnish such evidence as the Board may require to verify the Member's
compliance with subsection 3.3.0(a); and
make the books of account referred to in subsection 3.3.0(a)
available for inspection by and at the request of the Society's officers,
It is recommended that Members seek legal advice with respect to
complying with the law relating to trusts. The following controls should
be considered respecting trust funds:
each trust fund should be documented in writing;
trust funds, unless subject to written instructions to the contrary,
should be deposited without delay to a separate bank account, "a trust
account", which may be an account in the name of a specific client, but
should in all cases include in its title the word "trust";
withdrawals or disbursements from a trust account should be limited to:
funds properly required for payment to, or on behalf of,
the client; or
funds properly required for or toward payment of the
member's fees for services rendered or disbursements for which
a billing has been rendered and approved, in writing, by the client;
in the absence of express agreement to the contrary, any interest
income attributable to the client earned on trust funds should be accounted
for and reported to the client;
Members should maintain records to show clearly trust funds received,
paid or held on behalf of clients, clearly distinguishing the funds of
each client from those of other clients and from the member's own funds;
Members should establish appropriate controls over receipts and
disbursements of trust accounts (e.g. dual signing authority for
there may be occasions where a Member receives other property in
trust in lieu of funds. Appropriate controls should be established over
these properties including, if applicable, the safekeeping of securities
or other negotiable instruments; and
a Member may consider using a lawyer or trust company where amounts
are large or the situation is unusual or contentious.
5.1.0 Public Practice Determination
The Public Practice Review Committee will be entitled to inquire into
the activities of any Member who might be considered to be engaged in the
Practice of Public Accounting; and
where, upon determination of the Member's status, the Committee
concludes that a Member is engaged in the Practice of Public Accounting,
will retroactively register the Member to the date of the commencement of
the practice and may assess all public practice fees therein. The Public
Practice Review Committee may designate such Member to be subject to a
public practice review.
5.1.1 Failure to Submit to a Review or Adhere to Standards
Where a Member is in the Practice of Public Accounting and refuses to submit to a
Public Practice Review or continuously fails to adhere to Public Practice standards as
determined by the Public Practice Review Committee, the matter will be referred to the
Professional Conduct Committee.
A Member is entitled to charge for professional services such fees as the Member
considers to be fair and reasonable for the work undertaken. Generally it is prudent to
refer to fees and the basis in which they are to be computed in an engagement letter to
the client or potential client.
6.2 Contingency fees and services without fees
A Member engaged in the Practice of Public Accounting may offer or agree to perform a
service for a fee payable contingent on the outcome or result of that service providing the
service does not comprise or require:
that the Member hold himself free of any influence, interest or
relationship which, in respect of the engagement impairs the member's
professional judgement or objectivity; or
a compilation engagement.
6.3 Payment of commissions
Other than in relation to the purchase by a Member of an accounting practice, a Member
engaged in the Practice of Public Accounting, or a student while employed by a Member
engaged in the Practice of Public Accounting, may pay a commission to obtain a client to
any person who is either:
an employee of the member, or
a public accountant on contract with the member.
6.4 Receipt of commissions
Other than in relation to the sale by a Member of an accounting practice, a Member
engaged in the Practice of Public Accounting, or a student while employed by a Member
engaged in the Practice of Public Accounting, may accept from a public accountant only,
a commission or other compensation for a referral of a client.
A Member shall not directly, or through a party acting on behalf of, and with the
knowledge of the member, solicit any professional engagement which has been entrusted
to another Member engaged in the Practice of Public Accounting.
It is the responsibility of a Member engaged in the Practice of Public Accounting to
determine whether an engagement has been entrusted to a member.
6.6 Advertising and Promotion
A Member may advertise only in accordance with the following restrictions:
advertisements will be dignified and professional;
advertisements will not describe or purport to describe the quality
of the services which the Member provides;
advertisements will not contain any criticism or implicit criticism
of the abilities of or any claim or implicit claim of superiority over
any other member;
advertisements will not contain any statement or implication which
the Member knows or has reason to believe is false or misleading or
which the Member cannot substantiate;
an advertisement which includes fees will:
contain precise descriptions of all services referred to
in the advertisement;
contain a precise fee for each service referred to in
the advertisement; and
state whether the advertised fee is inclusive of
Members in the Practice of Public Accounting should ensure that
any advertising takes into account the following considerations:
name plates, signage, announcements, letterhead, and
professional cards should be of a reasonable size,
appropriate to their purpose;
advertisements should not be extravagant or
advertising should not appear in media which might
tend to lower public respect for the profession.
6.7.0 Communication with the predecessor
6.7.1 A Member shall not accept an engagement with respect to the Practice
of Public Accounting, where the Member is replacing another Member or
public accountant, without first communicating with such person and
inquiring whether there are any circumstances the Member should take into
account which might influence the member's decision whether or not to
accept the engagement.
6.7.2 The incumbent Member shall respond promptly to all communication
referred to in Rule 6.7.1 from Members or public accountants..
6.7.3 A Member responding to a communication pursuant to Rule 6.7.2 shall
inform the possible successor of all relevant facts causing the member's
resignation. It is recommended that Members seek legal advice with respect
to the information conveyed to the successor.
6.8.0 Cooperation with successor
6.8.1 Upon payment of fees then outstanding, as defined in section 5.1,
a Member shall, upon written request of the client supply on a timely basis
reasonable information to the member's successor about the work done or
6.8.2 A Member who is a predecessor on an engagement shall cooperate
with the successor, recognizing the client's interests are paramount, and
shall transfer promptly to the client or, on the client's instructions, to
the successor, all books, documents, and other property belonging to the
client in the member's possession.
A Member engaged to conduct an audit or a review of financial statements or other
financial information shall hold himself free of any influence, interest or relationship which,
in respect of the engagement, impairs the member's professional judgement or objectivity
or which, in the view of a reasonable observer, would impair the member's professional
judgement or objectivity.
DISCLOSURE OF CONFLICTS
A Member engaged in the Practice of Public Accounting, other than those engagements
specifically provided for in Rule 5.9, shall disclose any influence, interest or relationship
which, in respect of the engagement, would be seen by a reasonable observer to impair
the member's professional judgement or objectivity. Such disclosure shall be made in the
member's written report or other written communication accompanying financial
statements or other financial information, and the disclosure shall indicate the nature of the
influence or relationship and the nature and extent of the interest.
7.1.0 Retention of documentation and working papers
A Member shall retain for a reasonable period of time such working papers, records or
other documentation which reasonably evidence the nature and extent of the work done in
respect of any professional engagement in accordance with the generally accepted
standards of practice of the profession and the CICA handbook.
7.1.1 Client's property
The client of a Member engaged in Public Practice is, regardless of whether any fees and
disbursements are then outstanding, entitled to take custody of all property then held by
the Member and received from or at the direction of the client. Property is defined as all
information, both physical and electronic, that has been given to the Member by the client.
PUBLIC PRACTICE REVIEW
8.1 The Practice Review Committee will select a Member in the Practice of
Public Accounting for practice review either by random selection, or by reason
of consultation with the Board, any other Committee, any officer or employee of
the Society or any other person. All Members in the Practice of Public Accounting
are subject to a Public Practice review every five (5) years. This review will
be conducted by a Society-appointed reviewer.
8.2 Conduct of Review
The Practice Review Committee will appoint a Member, for the purpose of conducting a
practice review and to report thereon to the Public Practice Review Committee. The
Member so appointed may engage such assistants as may be required.
8.3 Unless there are extenuating circumstances, a Member will be given a
minimum of two weeks advance notice of the practice review. The practice review
will be otherwise conducted with all reasonable measures, not inconsistent with
the effectiveness of the practice review, so as to minimize interference with
the reviewed Member's practice and affairs.
8.4.1 After completion of a practice review, the Reviewer will prepare,
for the Secretary, a draft report concerning the practice review. The Secretary
provide the Member with a copy of the draft report, including where
appropriate, recommendations for corrective action; and
allow the Member the period of fifteen (15) days from the date of the
draft report to make a written response to the draft report.
8.4.2 The Public Practice Review Committee will:
assess the report, and the Member's written response, if any. The Public
Practice Review Committee will submit to the Secretary, a final report
on the practice review, noting therein any relevant comments received
from the Member;
based on the findings, conclude on the level of compliance with public
practice standards; and provide the Member with a revised report, if
applicable, and the committee's decision concerning future reviews and
required or recommended corrective action.
8.4.3 If a member disagrees with the decision of the Public Practice
Review Committee, he may appeal the decision in accordance with section 8 of
8.5.1 All or any of the following costs reasonably incurred in a
practice review may be assessed and levied against a reviewed Member:
the cost to the Society, inclusive of fees and disbursements, of
engaging the Public Practice Reviewer;
the cost to the Society, inclusive of fees and disbursements, of the
assistants, if any, engaged to assist in conducting the practice review;
travel, accommodation, living and other costs incurred in relation to the practice
review by Members of the Practice Review Committee, the accountant
conducting the review, his assistants, employees of the Society and any other
persons involved in the proceedings;
other costs reasonably incurred in connection with the practice review.
8.5.2 If the Practice Review Committee intends to assess and levy costs as
provided in subsection 8.5.1, the Committee will give the reviewed Member
written notice setting forth:
particulars of the costs to be assessed and levied; and
a specified date, being not less than fifteen (15) days from the date
of the notice, upon which the reviewed Member may appear before the
Practice Review Committee and address the issue of costs.
8.5.3 On the date referred to in subsection 8.5.2 (b), the reviewed
Member will be entitled to appear before the Practice Review Committee and
make representations concerning:
the assessment and levying of costs generally; and
any specific costs set forth in the written notice given under
8.5.4 Upon hearing the reviewed Member in accordance with subsection
8.5.3, the Practice Review Committee will make its final decision regarding
costs and will send a written copy of the decision to the reviewed Member.
8.5.5 The decision referred to in subsection 8.5.4 will fix a date
for the payment of any costs ordered to be paid, which date will not be
less than thirty (30) days from the date of the decision, and the costs will
be due and payable to the Society on or before the date so fixed for payment.
8.5.6 If a reviewed Member does not attend before the Practice Review
Committee as set forth in subsection 8.5.3, the Practice Review Committee
may proceed with a decision under subsection 8.5.4.
8.6.1 Except where required under these Rules, no Public Practice
Committee Member, Public Practice Appeal Committee Member, or Reviewer
will use or disclose:
any practice review file or report; or
any information obtained in the course of or as a result of the
A reviewed Member will implement and carry out all recommendations and/or corrective
actions made by the Practice Review Committee as a result of the practice review in
relation to his practice. Members not complying with the recommendations are addressed
in Section 5.1.1.
APPEAL OF THE DECISION OF THE PUBLIC PRACTICE REVIEW COMMITTEE
9.1 If a member disagrees with the decision of the Public Practice
Review Committee, as referred to in Section 7.5.2. ©, he may submit appeal,
in writing, stating the grounds for appeal. The appeal will be sent to the
Executive Director and must be received within (fifteen) 15 days of the date
the letter containing the decision was sent by the Society.
9.2 When the Secretary receives an appeal, as referred to in
Section 9.1, he will refer the appeal to the Board of Directors, which
will appoint a Public Practice Appeal Committee, whose purpose will be to
review the appeal and either confirm, reject or change the decision of
the Public Practice Review Committee. The Public Practice Appeal Committee
will be appointed within fifteen (15) days of the Secretary receiving the appeal.
9.3 The Public Practice Appeal Committee will consist of a Chairman
and not less than two (2) and not more than three (3) Certified Members,
all of whom will be registered in the Practice of Public Accounting. The
members on the Public Practice Appeal Committee will exclude members of
the Public Practice Review Committee.
9.4 The Public Practice Appeal Committee will receive copies of
the report outlining the decision of the Public Practice Review Committee
and the member's letter appealing the decision.
9.5 The Public Practice Appeal Committee may require either the
member, reviewer or both to attend its meeting(s).
9.6 The Public Practice Appeal Committee shall have the power to
confirm, reject, or change the findings of the Public Practice Review
Committee. All findings and decisions of the Public Practice Appeal
Committee shall be final, binding, and conclusive for all purposes. The
letter outlining the decision will be forwarded to the member who appealed the
decision, the Public Practice Review Committee and the Board of Directors.