Professional Negligence Claims Against Accountants

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0800 988 7756

If a negligent accountant has caused you loss, we can help you make a claim.

If you have put your trust in an accountant, and then suffered financial loss as a result of their advice or actions, we can help you claim compensation from them.

Our expert team of professional negligence solicitors has much experience in advising businesses and individuals on claims against accountants. Our solicitors will work to take the stress out of the situation, and will always give you straightforward, practical advice.

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Types of claims against accountants

Our professional negligence lawyers can provide a range of support and knowledge, including:

Suing An Accountant

Our expert team of professional negligence solicitors has many years of experience in advising businesses and individuals on professional negligence claims. We can help you if your accountant has caused you loss.

We understand that you may feel a little nervous by the idea of suing an accountant, and are likely to have many questions about your rights and the processes. When you work with Levi Solicitors, you will receive bespoke support every step of the way.

Accountant Duty Of Care

All professionals owe their clients a duty of care. This means that they must perform their jobs to a reasonable standard and with reasonable care. However, if your accountant’s advice or actions fall below the standard that you should reasonably expect, you may be able to make a professional negligence claim against your accountant.

When you first make contact with us, we will start by establishing whether your accountant has breached their duty of care. Where we believe you have a case, we can discuss costs and the next steps.

If you do not have the basis of a professional negligence case, we may still be able to guide you to make a complaint against your accountant, depending on the circumstances.

 

Accountant Professional Negligence

Businesses and individuals regularly use accountants to advise and act on their finances. In most cases, their advice and actions are of a good standard. However, sometimes things go wrong, meaning that you lose out financially as a result. Examples of accountant negligence include:

  • Incorrect or negligent tax advice
  • Failure to detect misappropriation of funds or fraud
  • Failure to complete a tax return resulting in penalty charges
  • Negligent completion of an audit report
  • Negligent overvaluation of a company asset
  • Incorrect valuation of the goodwill of a business
  • Failing to follow instructions.

 

If you feel you have a claim against an accountant, it is important to seek specialist legal advice from an experienced professional negligence solicitor. There are strict time limits for professional negligence claims including those against accountants. Generally, this is six years. However, there are some exceptions, so it is always worth contacting us to discuss your claim. We always recommend that you contact us as soon as you become aware of any negligence.

Complaints Against Accountants

Many accountants in England and Wales are accredited by the ACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) or the ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales). Both bodies have complaints procedures and you may be able to approach them if you have received poor service.

If you have a complaint against an accountant, we can advise you on whether it is worth approaching the professional body to make a complaint as well as making a professional negligence claim.

Even if you have had a negative decision from the professional body, we may still be able to help you.

 

Frequently asked questions about professional negligence claims against accountants

Can I make a claim against my accountant?
If you have suffered financial loss as a result of your accountant’s actions, you may be able to sue your accountant for negligence. We can help you identify any loss and how much it might be. For a successful professional negligence claim, you must be able to show that the accountant breached their duty of care to you and that you suffered loss as a result.

Accountants’ negligence can arise from all sorts of different instructions and scenarios. We will work to resolve any issue that has arisen out of an accountant’s negligence, and to ensure that you are adequately compensated for your losses.

How do I make a negligence claim against an accountant?
If you would like to make a professional negligence claim against an accountant, the first thing to do would be to speak to a specialist professional negligence solicitor.

Our team will start by reviewing the circumstances of your case. If they believe that you have the basis of a claim, we will gather the appropriate evidence and start to build your case.

On what grounds can you sue an accountant?
All professionals (including accountants) owe a duty of care to the clients they work with, meaning that they should provide proficient accountancy services. Where an accountant provides a substandard service, causing you a loss, this is considered a breach of that duty of care.

Under these circumstances, you may be able to sue your accountant, on the grounds that the owed duty of care was breached.

Cases like these are referred to as instances of professional negligence. To bring a professional negligence claim against an accountant, you will need to instruct a solicitor to assess, build and pursue your claim, eventually securing compensation if successful.

What are types of accountant negligence?
There are many ways that accountant negligence can occur, including:

  • Providing incorrect or negligent tax advice
  • Incorrectly valuing a business asset or the goodwill of a business
  • Failing to complete a tax return (in time or at all), resulting in penalty charges
  • Negligently auditing a company
  • Failing to detect fraud
  • Providing advice which might constitute tax evasion.
Is there a time limit to make an accountant negligence claim?
Yes, you have six years to issue a professional negligence claim. The time frame begins when you first experienced the loss, or the date when the accountant acted negligently, depending on what’s appropriate to the case.

There are some cases where a different time frame might apply, so it is important to seek specialist advice as soon as possible.

How much can I sue my accountant for?
Professional negligence claims tend to be for damages. This refers to an amount to compensate you for the loss you suffered. The aim is to put you into the position that you would have been, if it had not been for the negligent accountant.

It is hard to determine exactly how much compensation you can receive for a claim against an accountant. At Levi Solicitors, we handle claims from £10,000s to £1,000,000s.

Is my accountant insured?
Chartered Accountants and those who are members of a professional body will be obligated to have professional indemnity insurance. This type of insurance is designed to cover professional negligence claims against the accountant. In many cases, therefore, the money for your compensation will come from the accountant’s insurer, rather than the accountant themselves.

Non-chartered accountants are not obliged to have professional indemnity insurance. However, it is certainly advised.

We will investigate the accountant’s insurance status for you and advise you on the best course of action depending on the results.

What can I do if I have received a poor service from my accountant?
Receiving poor service from an accountant could include, for example, poor communication. And whilst this can be frustrating, it is unlikely to amount to negligence by itself. If you have received a poor service, you should look to the accountancy firm’s internal complaints procedure. If you cannot resolve your complaint this way, you may be able to settle your issue through the accountant’s professional body.

Professional Negligence Team

Ed Smith

Partner

0113 297 1875
 esmith@levisolicitors.co.uk

Ed is head of our professional negligence department and a member of the Professional Negligence Lawyers Association. Read More.

Gemma Horner

Partner

0113 468 4099
 ghorner@levisolicitors.co.uk

Gemma is a partner in our Dispute Resolution team, based at our Leeds City Centre office. Read More.

Zoreen Aziz

Solicitor

0113 532 7184
 zaziz@levisolicitors.co.uk

Zoreen is a solicitor in our Dispute Resolution team, based at our Leeds City Centre office. Read More.

Amelia Fragola-Hunt

Dispute Resolution Paralegal

0113 297 3187
 afragolahunt@levisolicitors.co.uk

Amelia Fragola-Hunt is a Dispute Resolution paralegal in our Leeds office. Read More.

Sasha Taylor-Bolshaw

Dispute Resolution Paralegal

0113 297 3187
 stbolshaw@levisolicitors.co.uk

Sasha Taylor-Bolshaw is a Dispute Resolution paralegal in our Leeds office. Read More.

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