Institutes – ACCA issues plagiarism writ

ACCA has launched a fresh legal action against the Irish Institute of Incorporated Public Accountants just a few days before it is expected to announce victory in its legal battle with the Institute of Financial Accountants.

ACCA accused the Waterford-based IIPA of a second bout of plagiarism, by copying ‘almost verbatim’ its bye-laws and regulations for the IIPA rule book. It has warned IIPA members against using ACCA property and is seeking an order in the High Court in Dublin to deliver up or destroy all of the infringing copies.

In an initial plagiarism battle that concluded in March, the IIPA was forced to stop using the ACCA syllabus and contributed to the certified body’s legal costs.

Speaking of the latest legal action Anthea Rose, ACCA’s chief executive, said: ‘It is extraordinary that, at the time of the previous court case, the IIPA did not disclose that it had copied, almost verbatim, 28 pages of ACCA’s bye-laws and regulations.’

ACCA’s bye-laws run to 660 pages and while the IIPA rule book is just 28 pages long. ‘It is almost all ours’, said an ACCA spokesman.

Brendan Dennehy, president of the IIPA, said: ‘We are defending the action.’

Meanwhile, lawyers are putting the final touches to an agreement with the IFA over ACCA’s contention that the IFA plagiarised part of its exam syllabus and suffered loss and damage as a result. ACCA is seeking damages for breach of copyright and an injunction that no future infringements will occur.

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