Legally, anyone at all can call themselves an accountant with no qualification. However, to call yourself ‘Chartered Accountants’ you must be a member of one of the Chartered Institutes. TBD Chartered Accountants are members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales (ICAEW).
Membership of ICAEW is not an easy task, and rightly so. It involves many years of study and passing various examinations from accounting, financial management, audit, business strategy and tax. To continue as members of the ICAEW, accountants must maintain high standards of ethical and professional conduct. As a member firm, TBD follows the framework of quality assurance principles which covers laws, regulations and professional standards, client acceptance and disengagement, competence and quality control.
You can find out more about the ICAEW at www.icaew.com.
As a regulated firm, we are required by the ICAEW to have certain levels of professional indemnity cover in place in case things go wrong. We are also bound to retain your tax papers for sufficient time to assist you with meeting your regulatory obligations to HM Revenue & Customs. Also, in the unlikely event that you wish to leave us and appoint a different accountant, we are bound by the ICAEW’s regulations on handover to your new accountants to ensure a smooth transition.
Unfortunately, there are no such requirements for an unregulated accountant!