Professional Business Accountants
Fact: A high school diploma (including English 12 and Math 11) is the only educational pre-requisite needed to begin PBA coursework, which is largely introductory with some intermediate courses. PBA coursework is not comparable to the CPA PEP, which requires completion of post-secondary pre-requisites and a four-year undergraduate degree upon entry, and is a rigorous post-graduate credential and professional designation that is internationally recognized.
Fact: Under the BC Chartered Professional Accountants Act, the designation “Chartered Professional Accountant” and the initials “CPA” to signify that designation, and the designation “Professional Accountant” and the initials “PA” to signify that designation, are reserved for the exclusive use of members of CPABC. Across Canada, every province and territory has CPA legislation in place or is working towards it. The designation “Professional Business Accountant” and the initials “PBA” signifying that designation are not recognized in the CPA Act.
Fact: Under the CPA Act, only members of CPABC are entitled to use or display the designation “Chartered Professional Accountant” or “Professional Accountant,” or engage in the “practice of professional accounting,” such as audit and assurance engagements; identical restrictions are in place in many Canadian provinces. The CPA Act also prohibits anyone who is not a member of CPABC from, in any manner, implying, suggesting or holding out that they are a professional accountant or chartered professional accountant.
Fact: CPABC is a statutory corporation continued under the CPA Act as the sole professional regulatory body for professional accountants in BC. CPABC protects the public interest by ensuring CPA members have completed extensive coursework, exams, and experience in order to obtain their professional designation. CPABC also ensures CPAs adhere to the rigorous CPABC Code of Professional Conduct, Bylaws, and Bylaw Regulations. As a private society, PBA is not recognized under the law as a professional regulatory body, and has no statutory authority to regulate its members.
Fact: Our national body, CPA Canada, is the only accounting body working with international and national regulators to set Canadian professional accounting standards through the CPA Canada Handbook.
Fact: The PBA Society has fewer than 300 members nationally and fewer than 40 members in BC, and as such, offer limited member services. By comparison, CPA Canada has over 200,000 members and CPABC has over 33,000 members. Member services for the CPA profession are extensive and include conferences, professional development, a career site, online and print magazines, a network of provincial chapters, advisory services, and other professional networking opportunities and forums.