Business Terms and Conditions
These terms and conditions set out the general terms under which we undertake our business and we are required by our professional body and for good commercial practice to have them in place.
We are bound by the ethical guidelines of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW), and will accept instructions to act for you on the basis that we will act in accordance with those ethical guidelines. A copy of these guidelines can be viewed at our offices on request or can be seen at www.icaew.com.
We are also required by our professional body to disclose our status as registered auditors and that our statutory auditor registration number is C002071204 . The firm‘s registration can be found on the following respective UK and Irish registers:
www.auditregister.org.uk and www.cro.ie/auditors
Our fees may depend not only upon the time spent on your affairs but also on the level of skill and responsibility and the importance and value of the advice that we provide, as well as the level of risk.
We may be able to provide you with an estimate of our fees for any specific work, but the estimate will not be contractually binding unless we explicitly state that that will be the case.
In some cases, you may be entitled to assistance with your professional fees, particularly in relation to any investigation into your tax affairs by HMRC. Assistance may be provided through insurance policies you hold or via membership of a professional or trade body. Other than where such assurance was arranged through us you will need to advise us of any such insurance cover that you have. You will remain liable for our fees regardless of whether all or part are liable to be paid by your insurers.
We will bill within a reasonable time scale of work done and this may be an invoice ‘on account’ basis for work in progress or with an invoice giving details of the period covered. Our fees are exclusive of VAT which will be added where it is chargeable. Any disbursements we incur on your behalf and expenses incurred in the course of carrying out our work for you will be added to our invoices where appropriate. We request all clients set up a standing order on account of fees particularly where work is of a regular pattern throughout the year.
Unless otherwise agreed to the contrary our fees do not include the costs of any third party, counsel or other professional fees.
If you do not accept that an invoiced fee is fair and reasonable you must notify us within 21 days of receipt, failing which you will be deemed to have accepted that payment is due.
In the case of a dispute over the level of fees charged we reserve the right to require that the matter is dealt with through arbitration. We recommend that arbitration is undertaken by the fee arbitration service provided by the ICAEW for members.
Our invoices are payable within 14 days. We reserve the right to charge interest in the case of overdue accounts. We may terminate our engagement and cease acting if payment of any fees billed is unduly delayed. However, it is not our intention to use these arrangements in a way that is unfair or unreasonable.
Quality of service
We aim to provide a high quality of service at all times. If you would like to discuss with us how our service could be improved or if you are dissatisfied with the service that you are receiving please let us know by contacting the director in charge of your account.
We undertake to look into any complaint carefully and promptly and to do all we can to explain the position to you. If we do not answer your complaint to your satisfaction you may take up the matter with the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.
Professional indemnity insurance
As required by our professional standards we advise you that our company’s activities are covered by professional indemnity insurance for services rendered in the United Kingdom ( including the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man) and the Republic of Ireland, arranged through Royal and Sun Alliance Insurance plc, St Mark’s Court, Chart Way, Horsham, West Sussex, RH12 1XL
Exempt regulated activities carried out by the firm
This matter is being drawn to your attention because we may need your agreement to same and, if relevant, we shall ask you to reply giving your agreement to the nature and scope of the advice we are permitted to give as outlined in the following terms.
During the provision of professional services to you, if you need advice on investments, we may have to refer you to someone who is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority, as we are not. However, as we are licensed by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales which is a Designated Professional Body involved in certain exempt regulated activities, we may be able to provide certain investment services where these are complementary to or arise out of the professional services we are providing to you. These services are limited in scope and include:
a. Contacting a financial advisor on your behalf in connection with a contract of long term insurance or a qualifying contract of insurance eg: pensions and life cover;
b. Arranging an appointment with a financial advisor on your behalf in connection with the aforementioned products;
c. Commenting on a financial advisor’s advice in connection with the aforementioned products and any other investment products. Commenting means explaining and evaluating the advice to include identifying that which is unsuitable or that which is suitable and endorsing same.
In the event that you suffer loss by way of the advice we have given you and in the unlikely event that we cannot meet our liabilities to you, you may be able to claim compensation under the Chartered Accountants' Compensation Scheme. This was established and is maintained by the Institutes for paying compensation for loss suffered in the circumstances set out in the scheme. More details can be found here
Client accounting services
If you have a client bank account operated by us and it earns interest we must pass this on to you. Our professional regulations do not include a de minimis limit, but a client bank account need only be interest-bearing if ‘material’ interest is likely to accrue. The regulations do however allow us to agree with you in writing to an alternative treatment, for example, accounting for interest only over a certain amount. We consider this will be done where the annual net of tax interest received is £25 or more. Your attention will be drawn to our business terms and conditions and agreement to same which will include this particular term.
Money Laundering Regulations 2017
- In accordance with the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 and Money Laundering Regulations 2017 you agree to waive your right to confidentiality to the extent of any report made, document provided or information disclosed to the National Crime Agency (NCA).
- You also acknowledge that we are required to report directly to NCA without prior reference to you or your representatives if during the course of undertaking any assignment the person undertaking the role of Money Laundering Reporting Officer becomes suspicious of money laundering.
- As a specific requirement of the Money Laundering Regulations we may require you to produce evidence of identity. Copies of such records will be maintained by us for a period of at least five years after we cease to act for the business.
- As with other professional services firms, we are required to identify our clients for the purposes of the UK anti-money laundering legislation. We may request from you, and retain, such information and documentation as we require for these purposes and/or make searches of appropriate databases.