Accountants now want to be able to carry out all reserved legal activities and to gain legal professional privilege for the tax advice work they do.
Lawyers need to get on the front foot and start thinking about getting into accounting work.
Do you want to work on their terms or on yours?
The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) has outlined plans which would enable accountants to carry out all the reserved legal activities, including litigation and rights of audience. The ICAEW, which currently regulates only probates services, said its activities would be “restricted to the area of taxation”. It promised that, if successful, it would consider joining the Quality Assurance Scheme for Advocates (QASA) scheme. If successful, the move could allow accountants to claim legal professional privilege in their tax work, which they have long craved. Currently a handful of accountancy firms have had alternative business structures licensed by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, while the ICAEW has licensed 182 firms to conduct probate work.