AdSlot1

ICAEW to consult on public interest guidance

ICAEW plans to consult the profession on how accountants should consider the public interest, when accepting work after the institute was rebuked over failings in the quality of its guidance for professional ethics following an FRC appeal tribunal.

An appeal tribunal that overturned a number of charges levied against Deloitte by the profession’s watchdog over the Big Four firm’s work at MG Rover criticised the institute for the lack of clarity in its guidance about how accountants should act in the public interest.

The panel, chaired by former Lord Justice of Appeal Sir Stanley Burnton, rejected charges that Deloitte acted against the public interest when involved with advising the owners of MG Rover, the doomed car manufacturer which collapsed in 2005, and went on to label the ICAEW’s guidance on how to consider the public interest as “vague and unhelpful”.

Tony Bromell, head of integrity and markets, said the ICAEW is currently reviewing its advice around professional ethics and hopes to publish draft guidance for comment by the summer.

“It’s something we want to consider carefully as there are a number of different areas upon which it touches. We also want to ensure that we hear directly from all those who have an interest in this, both within and beyond the profession,” Bromell said.

Speaking at the FRC’s annual open meeting, chief executive Stephen Haddrill said the watchdog was “very keen” that the ICAEW quickly address the lack of clarity in its guidance about how accountants should act in the public interest.

He added that the FRC is keen to work with ICAEW and other institutes to find a solution because of the risk of creating a “vacuum in something so fundamentally important”.

Related reading

/IMG/064/125064/icaew-flag-very-close
/IMG/308/262308/rob-whiteman-cipfa
BAA logo _360x270
/IMG/785/327785/acca-brassplate