Today I am discussing professional licensing for certified public accountants. Tax season is long gone, but April 15, 2020 will be around the corner sooner than you think. CPAs, like just about everyone else, are a licensed group of professionals. North Carolina General Statute chapter 93 gives the NC State Board of CPA Examiners the authority to implement and regulate CPAS in the state of North Carolina. 21 NCAC 08N .0100-.0410 are the professional ethics along with disciplinary actions enacted by the NC State Board of CPA Examiners.
Whether you are a CPA or not I’m sure you’ve heard the term “creative accounting”. For licensed CPAs that type of behavior is not only frowned upon but is a violation of the ethics that govern CPAs in North Carolina. Engaging in fraudulent accounting is violation of 21 NCAC 08N .203 (discreditable conduct prohibited). It is also a violation of 21 NCAC 08N .0207 (violation of tax laws). Fraudulent accounting can possibly subject you to criminal charges as well. While it’s always ideal to have a great relationship with a client, it’s never going to be worth it to put your license on the line for a client. Do not do anything for a client that would violate the rules of professional conduct.
Another thing that Certified Public Accountants should be aware of regarding ethics and their profession is auditing standards. 21 NCAC 08N .0403 states “[a] CPA shall not render auditing services unless the CPA has complied with the applicable generally accepted auditing standards”. The administrative code does not provide those standards. The code does not provide statements on auditing standards. However, the code does provide the location of those standards. Copies of the statements on auditing standards can be obtained from the AICPA. The AICPA is located in Durham. The cost of the AICPA is $194 for the paperback version or $169 for the on-line subscription form. If you are a CPA and you intend to render auditing services, you must do so in compliance with the aforementioned auditing standards.
If you have further questions about compliance as a CPA feel free to contact us for a consultation at (919) 521-8810.