As an accountant in Ontario, you would not have been where you are without investing substantial resources into gaining the qualifications necessary to practice your profession. For this reason, society typically holds CPAs to high standards of conduct. If you face allegations of misconduct, your personal and professional reputation could suffer significant harm that might even have long-term consequences.
Your chosen field of work can be intensely competitive with mounting pressure to perform. If someone accuses you of straying into questionable activities, proactive steps to obtain skilled legal counsel may put you in the best position to protect yourself.
Know what to expect
Anticipating what will follow a complaint against you might remove some of the stress that allegations of misconduct
may bring. CPA Ontario aims to ensure that its members meet high standards of integrity in order to protect the public interest. It will require the complainant to provide supporting documents and full details of the allegations. The Professional Conduct Committee will share the information with you to allow you to respond before they review both the claims and your response. You will answer questions during a hearing with the Committee, and your legal representative may be present.
Upon completion of the review, the Committee may reach one of the following conclusions:
Seeking professional support
If you suspect an impending investigation
- Rules were breached, and the Committee may propose a settlement or prepare for the prosecution of professional misconduct allegations before the Discipline Committee.
- Rules might have been breached, but the circumstances indicate that a reprimand, followed by guidance will best serve the public interest.
- No breaching of rules occurred, and thus there will be no steps will follow. They will then close the file.
, taking advantage of the professional resources readily available to you may be wise. An experienced Ontario lawyer can meticulously analyze the legal facts, dissect the issues and identify weaknesses in the case of the complainant. With the help of forensic accountants and a network of other professionals, a savvy lawyer can determine your best possible defence against the allegations brought by the complainant, increasing your odds of emerging with your personal and professional reputation intact.