Guidance on your duty to report misconduct as an ICAEW member
We expect ICAEW Chartered Accountants to maintain the highest standards of practice and professional conduct. All ICAEW members have a duty to report misconduct to the ICAEW Professional Conduct Department (PCD) regardless of the type of organisation you work for. The following guidance (first issued in 1993) on what and how to report misconduct has recently been updated. The new guidance is effective from 1 October 2020.
Under Disciplinary Bye-laws 9.1 and 9.2, members are obligated to report misconduct – either their own, or of another ICAEW member, provisional member or firm, concerning matters that, if unreported, could adversely affect the reputation of the Institute or the profession as a whole.
Examples of cases that require a member to make a report include:
- intentionally providing false or misleading information to a principal, employer, senior manager, client or regulator, among others;
- knowingly (or recklessly) breaching AML requirements;
- abusive or intimidating behaviour directed at employees, managers, clients or other third parties;
- harassment, sexual or otherwise;
- being convicted of a criminal offence (minor motoring offences that do not result in disqualification are an exception);
- inappropriate use of social media.
This sample list is a mix of professional and personal misconduct, but longer (non-exhaustive) lists in each category are available in the guidance.
The revised Guidance on the duty to report misconduct (effective 1 October 2020) covers:
- A summary of what you need to report to PCD and when.
- Examples of matters that include issues that relate to ICAEW members’ personal and professional lives.
- Who should make the report if issues arise within your firm.
- What to consider when making a report (e.g. client confidentiality, AML obligations and GDPR).
- How to make a confidential report to PCD and what we can do with anonymous reports.
- Where to access advice or assistance to make a report.
Background to the Guidance on the Duty to Report Misconduct
The Guidance on the Duty to Report Misconduct was first issued by ICAEW’s Council in 1993. The ICAEW Regulatory Board issued revised guidance to help members and firms understand what they must report to ICAEW’s Professional Conduct Department (PCD) and when in October 2020.