ICAEW.com works better with JavaScript enabled.

What is a Chartered Accountant?

ICAEW Chartered Accountants can be recognised by the letters ACA or FCA after their name and by the ICAEW logo in the corner of this page.

Two people looking at a computer screen together smiling, one of them pointing at something on it

What does ‘chartered’ mean?

Legally anyone can call themselves an ‘accountant’ – they don’t need any qualifications, training or experience. ICAEW Chartered Accountants are trained professionals you can trust.

Members of ICAEW

Members of The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales

Bound by our Code of Ethics

and subject to our disciplinary procedures;


Chartered accountants who complete a minimum of three years in-depth training including practical experience;

Committed to CPD training

Committed to continuing professional development training every year to keep their knowledge and skills up to date

Hold a practising certificate and professional indemnity insurance

Required to hold a practising certificate and professional indemnity insurance if they offer professional services to the public

Subject to review

As part of our Practice Assurance scheme, which demonstrates their commitment to quality assurance, and upholding and developing the highest professional standards

What do you need to know?

When you see an accountant make sure you ask them:

  1. Are you a qualified chartered accountant?
  2. Do you hold a practising certificate?
  3. Do you have professional indemnity insurance?
  4. Do you offer the services and have the experience I need?
  5. Are you authorised to do audit, investment business or insolvency work?
BAS colleagues talking

How can a chartered accountant help your business?

Whether you need guidance on your personal finances, or detailed financial advice about your business, an ICAEW Chartered Accountant can help. Because the world is constantly changing, you need the most up-to-date financial advice, and to understand how the latest regulations affect you or your business.

ICAEW Chartered Accountants are at the forefront of their profession, so you know that you can rely on the guidance they give to help you make the best decisions possible. ICAEW Chartered Accountants listen and question, ensuring that the recommendations they make are of the highest standard.

Their high quality advice, sound judgement and insight into your finances are second to none. They have in-depth knowledge and technical expertise gained from rigorous academic training, and the ability to apply it to all financial situations. Above all, they are bound by a Code of Ethics which ensures their professionalism and responsibility to their clients. ICAEW Chartered Accountants provide a wide range of services across accountancy, finance and business. It is important that you find a firm that offers the services and has the experience that is right for you. You can search for firms by location, specialisms and expertise on icaewfirms.com

Bas image colleagues talking

Latest business advice

Articles related to the Business Advisory service.

latest business advice