Accountants - Professional Negligence

Financial loss at the hands of a negligent accountant can have serious consequences.

Most accountants in England and Wales are regulated by the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants (ACCA) or the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW). But what happens when they don't meet the expected professional standard or act in the best interest of their clients?

Professional Negligence claims for accounting

If negligence has directly resulted in you losing out financially, you might be able to pursue a claim for compensation.

How Can I Find Out Whether I Can Make A Claim?

Although each case is unique, some common reasons for pursuing a negligence claim against an accountant include:

  • Incorrect tax advice
  • Missing deadlines to file annual tax returns
  • Failing to draw up accurate accounts
  • Not advising you about tax regulations
  • Over- or undervaluing company assets
  • Failing to advise you on capital allowances in a commercial property transaction

Sometimes it can be difficult to identify whether the service you received was in fact negligent. By speaking to one of our Professional Negligence solicitors, they can clarify your situation and let you know whether you have grounds for making a claim.

What Steps Are Involved In Making A Claim Against An Accountant?

Usually, the process for making a claim is as follows:

  1. You'll first need to speak to one of our Professional Negligence solicitors, making sure that you give them as much information as possible โ€“ including the instructions that were given to the accountant. If an agreement was made with the accountant and a contract was drawn up, your solicitor will analyse its terms

  2. Following this, your solicitor will investigate whether the service you received led to a financial loss and they'll collect evidence that demonstrates the accountant's negligence. This may include seeking the opinion of an impartial expert, as their perspective will illustrate whether the level of service you were given was sub-standard

  3. Your solicitor will make an assessment as to whether your claim is valid and outline the grounds you have for making a professional negligence claim

In most cases, your solicitor will try to resolve your claim at an early stage without starting formal proceedings. This will, however, depend on the nature of your case.

Is There A Time Limit For Making Negligence Claims Against An Accountant?

By law, you have 6 years from the date on which the negligence took place, or 3 years from the date on which you first knew that you had suffered from a loss, to make a claim.

Why Choose Simpson Millar?

When you've placed your finances in the hands of someone you believe to be an experienced professional, it can be devastating when they let you down. It can be even tougher to recover from any financial loss you've suffered as a result of your accountant's negligence.

Our Professional Negligence solicitors have years of specialist expertise and experience in dealing with claims against accountants. They'll be able to identify whether you can make a claim for compensation and will fight for you to receive the compensation that you're entitled to.

Please contact us with no obligation on 0808 129 3320 or get in touch through our online enquiry form.

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Robert Godfrey | Partner, Dispute Resolution | Simpson Millar LLP

Robert Godfrey
Partner, Dispute Resolution

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