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The Member completed a BC Law Society Trust Report/Accountant’s Report for a client without the proper license (Audit or Review). The Member also incorrectly represented to the Law Society that the Member was licensed to do the work.

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct:

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care
205 – False or misleading documents and oral representations; and
Bylaw 700 – Public Practice by CPA Members.

The Committee recommended the Member:

  1. Accept a reprimand;
  2. Pay expenses of $500; and
  3. Pay a fine of $1,000.

After the Member’s practice license was cancelled, the Member failed to ensure the security of client records, which were ultimately destroyed. This resulted in significant expense and distress to the former clients. Despite the cancelled practise license, the Member maintained a website and LinkedIn profile which inaccurately gave the impression the Member was still in public practice.

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows:

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care
212.2 – Handling property of others

The Committee took into account that the Member was experiencing a significant personal and health situation at the time of these events. The Committee recommended the Member accept a reprimand.

The Member completed two BC Law Society Trust Reports/Accountant’s Reports for a client without the proper license (Audit or Review).  The Member also incorrectly represented to the Law Society that they were properly licensed to do the work.

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows:

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care
205 – False or misleading documents and oral statements
Bylaw 700 Public Practice by CPA Members

The Committee recommended the Member:

  1. Accept a reprimand;
  2. Pay expenses of $700; and
  3. Pay a fine of $1000

A Member completed Notice to Reader financial statements for a client without a public practice license.

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows:

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care

The Committee recommended the Member:

  1. Accept a reprimand;
  2. Pay expenses of $800; and
  3. Pay a fine of $500

The Firm audited the financial statements of a client and provided an unqualified audit opinion.  The Member was the engagement partner.  There was audit evidence that suggested an asset’s value was materially impaired.   The Firm did not perform sufficient audit procedures to determine if the asset’s value was fairly presented.  The financial statements also contained an error in the calculation of cash balances.

The Investigation Committee determined the Firm contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows:

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care
206.1 – Professional Competence

The Committee recommended that the Firm:

  1. Accept a reprimand
  2. Pay expenses of $2800; and
  3. Attend two full days of professional development courses related to audit and assurance.

The Member was engaged to complete a Law Society Trust Report – Accountant’s Report for one reporting period.  The Report requires that all exceptions should be noted within the Report.  The Member did not identify and report numerous exceptions.  The Member did not retain appropriate working papers and documentation of their work.

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows:

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care
205 – False or misleading documents and oral statements
218 – Retention of documentation and working papers

The Committee recommended that the Member:

  1. accept a reprimand;
  2. pay expenses of $1300; and
  3. attend course Law Society, Real Estate Council and Other Specified Procedures Reports.

A Firm prepared annual income tax returns for a family trust and its beneficiaries.  The Firm failed to obtain or document a beneficiary’s authorization to file an income tax return for several years.

The Investigation Committee determined that the Firm contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows:

202.1 – Due care
205 – False or misleading documents and oral representations
206.1 – Compliance with professional standards
218 – Retention of documentation and working papers

The Committee recommended that the Firm:

  1. accept a reprimand;
  2. pay expenses of $2,822; and
  3. report to the Director, Professional Conduct, regarding the steps the Firm has taken to prevent recurrences of similar instances in the future.

The Member completed a Law Society Trust Report – Accountant’s Report for a lawyer without the required audit or review license.  Despite this, when the Member filed the Report with the Law Society, the Member declared having the required public practice license to perform such service.

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows:

101.1&.2 – Compliance with governing legislation, bylaws, regulations and the Code
201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1– Integrity and due care
205 – False or misleading documents
206.1 – Compliance with professional standards

Bylaw 700(1) – Public Practice by CPA Members

The Committee took into account factors affecting the Member’s personal circumstances.  The Committee recommended the Member:

  1. Accept a reprimand
  2. Pay expenses of $1046; and
  3. Attend courses Code Decoded: Evolving Professional Ethical Expectations; and Gateway to membership: Welcome to the Pros.

The Member was engaged to complete a Law Society Trust Report – Accountant’s Report for two reporting periods.  The Report requires that all exceptions should be noted within the Report.  The Member also did not identify and report numerous exceptions. 

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows:

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1– Integrity and due care
205 – False or misleading documents and oral statements

The Committee recommended the Member:

  1. Accept a reprimand
  2. Pay expenses of $1600
  3. Must not complete a Law Society Trust Report – Accountant’s Report until the Member attends the CPABC seminar Law Society, Real Estate Council and Other Specified Procedures Reports.

The Member made errors and omissions on the personal income tax returns of married clients over several years, primarily by attributing income and deductions to the wrong spouse.  The Member also failed to be alert to the foreign tax consequences of the clients’ financial transactions, and failed to advise the clients to file income tax returns in several foreign jurisdictions as a result.  The clients had to pay interest on unpaid taxes due to the Member’s actions.

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct and legacy CMA Rules of Professional Conduct as follows:

CPABC Code of Professional Conduct

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care
203 – Professional competence

CMA Society of BC Rules of Professional Conduct

201.1 – Maintaining Good Reputation of the Profession
202.1 – Integrity and Due Care
203 – Sustaining Professional Competence

The Committee recommended the Member:

  1. Accept a reprimand; and
  2. Pay expenses of $3793.

The Member, as a CFO of a company, failed to detect a financial fraud that was perpetrated on the company.  The member acted on instructions sent via email that were fraudulent, and were from unknown sources. 

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows:

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession

202.1 – Due care

The Committee took into consideration that the Member’s employment was terminated and is a respondent in a civil case related to this matter. The Committee recommended the Member:

  1. Accept a reprimand; and
  2. Personally attend a course on fraud prevention, operational skills for CFOs or cybersecurity.

The Member was retained by a client to complete and file a tax credit application.  The Member did not complete the application on a timely basis and did not adequately communicate with the client.  Further, during the course of the investigation, the Member did not cooperate with the investigator.

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows,

101.1 – Compliance with governing legislation, bylaws, regulations and the Code

104.1 – Requirement to co-operate

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession

202.1 – Integrity and due care

The Committee recommended the Member:

  1. Accept a reprimand;
  2. Pay a fine of $1,000; and
  3. Pay expenses of $2,395.

The Member failed to respond to repeated requests by CPABC staff to provide support for continuing professional education activities reported to CPABC.  Pursuant to Bylaw 603, the Membership Committee made a report to the Investigation Committee concerning the Member’s lack of co-operation.  An investigation was subsequently authorized, and the Member failed to co-operate with the investigation.

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows,

101. – Compliance with governing legislation, bylaws, regulations and the Code

104.1&.2 – Requirement to co-operate

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession

The Committee recommended the Member:

  1. Accept a reprimand;
  2. Pay a fine of $1000; and
  3. Provide satisfactory documentation to support claimed continuing professional education activities and exemptions.

The Member was approached by a family member to assist their church congregation by performing specified procedures of the congregation’s financial reporting. The Member performed the work and charged a nominal fee.  The Member did not hold a public practice license.  When the Member realized a practice license was required to perform the work, the Member self-reported the matter to CPABC.

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows,

101.1(b) – Compliance with governing legislation, bylaws, regulations and the Code

202.1 – Due Care

The Committee recommended a statement of complaint not be issued on condition the Member receive a warning that this determination will be taken into account if any other matters are referred to the Committee in the future.

Two equal shareholders of a company (A and B) were involved in a marital dispute with each other.  Without the knowledge of Shareholder A, the Member accepted a new engagement from Shareholder B to prepare the annual financial statements and tax returns for the company.  The Member sent a takeover letter to the former accountant for the company but did not wait sufficient time for a reply, and did not follow-up with the former accountant before performing the work. The Member also disregarded a request from Shareholder A to not proceed with the work.  The Member then filed the corporate tax returns without the knowledge and consent of Shareholder A.  By excluding Shareholder A from the company’s affairs, the Member did not display objectivity.

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows,

201. – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession

202.1 – Integrity and due care

202.2 – Objectivity

302.1 – Communication with predecessor

The Committee recommended the Member:

  1. Accept a reprimand;
  2. Pay a fine of $1000; and
  3. Pay expenses of $2218 plus GST.

The Member performed bookkeeping and compilation financial statements for a client.  The Member resigned from the engagement prior to completing the annual financial statements. After resigning, the Member did not sufficiently assist the client in the transition to a new accountant, including failing to provide sufficient corporate records and documentation of the underlying transactions.  The Member also delivered some of the corporate records to a third party, without the knowledge or authorization of the client.

The Investigation Committee determined the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows,

201. – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession

202.1 – Integrity and due care

208.1&3 – Confidentiality of information

303.1&2 – Provision of client information

The Committee recommended the Member:

  1. accept a reprimand;
  2. pay a fine of $1,000; and
  3. pay expenses of $2,016 plus GST

The member initially agreed to assist an individual with the preparation of a personal income tax return and to resolve outstanding issues with the Canada Revenue Agency.  Despite several commitments to perform the work over a lengthy period, the member did not provide the assistance to the individual.

The Investigation Committee determined that the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows,

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care

The Committee took into account that the member was experiencing a personal situation which affected the member’s ability to provide client services in a timely manner.  The Committee recommended the member receive a warning that this determination will be taken into account if any other matters are referred to the Committee in the future.

The member initially agreed to assist a client of the member’s firm with an estate plan.  Over several months, the member did not respond to several communications from the client requesting an update on the progress of the work.  

The Investigation Committee determined that the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows,

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care

The Committee recommended the member:

  1. accept a reprimand; and
  2. pay expenses of $1,969 plus GST

The Member was engaged to prepare a client’s T1 Returns for 2013 and 2014.  The Member:

  1. failed to advise the client that they had over-contributed to a Registered Retirement Saving Plan (RRSP) in 2013. The client continued to over-contribute to their RRSP, resulting in the assessment of penalties by the Canada Revenue Agency; and
  2. did not adequately assist the client in resolving the over-contributions to the RRSP.

During the investigation the Member did not provide complete answers to the investigator’s questions, and treated the investigator and CPABC staff unprofessionally by using profanity in written and oral communications.

The Investigation Committee determined that the Member contravened the following,

CGA-BC Code of Ethical Principles & Rules of Conduct:

EP3 – Due Care & Professional Judgement
R101 – Discredit

CPABC Code of Professional Conduct:

104.1 – Requirement to co-operate
201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care

The Committee recommended the Member:

  1. accept a reprimand;
  2. pay a fine of $3,000; and
  3. pay expenses of $2,250 plus GST

The member was retained by three clients to perform specified audit procedures and complete Law Society of British Columbia Trust Reports. The work in question was performed by staff under the member’s supervision.  The Reports were completed and submitted to the Law Society without any exceptions noted.  The Law Society subsequently conducted its own reviews of the lawyers’ trust accounts, and noted numerous breaches of trust accounting rules that should have been reported to the Law Society as exceptions.

The Investigation Committee determined that the member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows,

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care
203 – Professional competence
205 – False or misleading documents
206 – Compliance with professional standards

The Committee recommended the member:

  1. accept a reprimand;
  2. pay a fine of $3,000; and
  3. pay expenses of $4,062 plus GST.

The member completed Law Society Trust Report forms (the “Reports”) for a client without proper licensure. The member:

  1. completed the Reports carelessly and inaccurately;
  2. did not consult with their mentor before performing the engagements;
  3. was not independent of the client as the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct requires; and
  4. failed to maintain working papers.

The member also operated an unlicensed practice before obtaining a practice license from CPABC.

The Investigation Committee determined that the member contravened the Code as follows,

101.1&.2 – Compliance with governing legislation, bylaws, regulations and the Code
104.1 – Requirement to co-operate
201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care
202.2 – Objectivity
203 – Professional competence
204.1-.3 – Independence
205 – False or misleading documents
206.1 – Compliance with professional standards
218 – Retention of documentation and working papers
Bylaw 700(1)&(2) – Public Practice by CPA Members

The Committee recommended the member:

  1. accept a reprimand;
  2. pay a fine of $2,000;
  3. pay expenses of $2,475 plus GST;
  4. retain the services of a practice advisor acceptable to the Director, Professional Conduct (the “Director”). The practice advisor is expected to provide coaching and support related to accounting and tax matters. This requirement for a practice advisor will remain in effect until the Investigation Committee determines it is no longer necessary; and attend in-person and successfully completes the CPABC course PD Nexus: Public Practice Insights

The Member made errors in the preparation of the income tax returns of two married clients.  The Member did not respond to repeated inquiries by the clients.

The Investigation Committee determined that the Member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care
206.1 – Compliance with professional standards

The Committee recommended the member:

  1. accepts a reprimand; and
  2. at the Member’s expense, enter into an arrangement with a senior member of the profession with expertise in practice management (the “Advisor”), who is acceptable to CPABC’s Director, Professional Conduct, in which:
    1. At the outset of the arrangement, the Member must provide the Advisor with a copy of this and previous Determination and Recommendations (D&Rs), and the related investigation reports;
    2. In light of the matters noted in the D&Rs, the Advisor will conduct an overall review of the Member’s practice management.   The Advisor must periodically review and have periodic mentoring discussions with the Member to promote better understanding of applicable professional, practice management and ethical standards.  The Member must meet with the Advisor at least six times in person, by video or by telephone; 
    3. The Advisor must be given access to sufficient documentation to allow the Advisor to understand the nature, extent and issues related to the Member’s practice relevant to this matter;
    4. This arrangement will last one year; and
    5. The Member must provide written notification to the Director, Professional Conduct, that at least six meetings with the Advisor have been completed

The member failed to complete and file a client’s GST return.  When the client questioned the status of the return, the member committed to completing it, but failed to do so even after repeated contacts by the client.

During the course of the investigation:

  1. The member did not co-operate adequately with the investigation; and
  2. It became apparent that in addition to the member’s registered public practice, the member was operating an unlicensed bookkeeping and tax preparation service.

The Investigation Committee determined that the member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows:

CPABC Code of Professional Conduct:
101.1 – Compliance with governing legislation, bylaws, regulations and the Code
104.1 – Requirement to co-operate
201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care
206.1 – Compliance with professional standards

Bylaws:
700(1) – Public Practice

The Committee recommended the member:

  1. Accept a reprimand;
  2. pay a fine of $10,000;
  3. pay expenses of $2,681 plus GST of $134.05; and
  4. agree to take all steps necessary to obtain proper CPABC public practice licensure within 30 days.

The member was the financial controller of a company with two principal shareholders.  The member effected transfers of company funds to entities in which one of the shareholders held an interest, without ensuring that the other principal shareholder approved of the transactions.

The Investigation Committee determined that the member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows:

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care

The Committee recommended that a Statement of Complaint not be issued, on condition that the member receive a warning that this determination will be taken into account if any other matters are referred to the Committee in the future.

The member agreed to assist a long-standing acquaintance with resolving tax issues.  The member took possession of the acquaintance’s documents.   After a lengthy period, the member did not assist the acquaintance with resolving the tax issues, and did not communicate with the acquaintance on a timely basis.

The Investigation Committee determined the member contravened the CPABC Code of Professional Conduct as follows:

201.1 – Maintenance of the good reputation of the profession
202.1 – Integrity and due care

The Committee recommended the member

  1. accept a reprimand;
  2. pay partial expenses of $1,100 plus GST of $55.00; and
  3. attend and successfully completes the CPABC course Public Practice Insights.