Did you know that currently, the word “accountant” is not a protected term. That means, that anyone can set themselves up and call themself an accountant – scary right?
So to make sure that your accountant is appropriately regulated, make sure that they are a member of a professional body. Usually, if they are providing services to members of the public through public practice, that will mean that they are a member of the ACCA, ICAEW, AAT, CAI or ICAS. You may find qualified bookkeepers are a member of the ICB.
What all of these bodies have in common is that they hold their members to a high set of professional standards. In order to maintain membership, accountants must demonstrate that each year they undertake continuous professional development and that they report data about their firms to the bodies.
Accountants who are members of these bodies can undergo practice visits and inspections, supervision from the body and even disciplinary action!