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Copyright 2000: Queens Printer,
St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada

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Revised Statutes of Newfoundland 1990


CHAPTER P-35

AN ACT TO REGULATE THE PRACTICE OF PUBLIC ACCOUNTANCY

Analysis

1. Short title

2. Definitions

3. Licensing board

4. First meeting

5. Other meetings of board

6. Quorum

7. Voting

8. Powers of board

9. Roll of public accountants

10. Licensing by board

11. Fitness of applicants

12. Titles which public accountants may use

13. Date of licence

14. Revocation of licence

15. Notice of suspension

16. Right of appeal

17. Restoration

18. Practice prohibited

19. Corporation not to practise as public accountant

20. Admission as C.A.

21. Fund

22. Remuneration

23. Annual audit

24. Regulations

25. Signing authority

26. Service

27. Evidence

28. General penalties

29. Unlicensed persons may not recover charges

30. Reservation in favour of The Society of Industrial Accountants


Short title

1. This Act may be cited as the Public Accountancy Act.

RSN1970 c313 s1

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Definitions

2. In this Act

(a) "board" means the Public Accountants Licensing Board;

(b) "council" means the council of the institute;

(c) "institute" means the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Newfoundland;

(d) "public accountant" means a person who, either alone or in partnership, engages for reward in public practice involving

(i) the performance of services which include the auditing of accounts and the preparing, signing, delivering or issuing, of a financial, accounting or related statement, and

(ii) the issue of a written opinion, certificate, report or statement of the public accountant as to the correctness, fairness, completeness or reasonableness, or otherwise of a financial, accounting or related statement where, because of the circumstances, or of the signature, stationery or wording employed it is indicated that the person or partnership acts or purports to act in relation to the opinion, certificate, report or statement as an independent accountant or auditor, or as a person or partnership having or purporting to have expert knowledge in accounting or auditing matters, to the intent that the opinion, certificate, report or statement of the public accountant shall add to or detract from the credibility or acceptability of the financial, accounting or related statement in respect of which it is made,

but does not include a person who engages only in bookkeeping or cost accounting or in the installation of bookkeeping, business or cost systems or who performs accounting or auditing functions exclusively in respect of a public authority or a commission, committee or emanation of one, including a Crown company; and

(e) "roll" means the Roll of Public Accountants of Newfoundland and Labrador referred to in section 9.

RSN1970 c313 s2

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Licensing board

3. (1) The Public Accountants Licensing Board is continued.

(2) The members of the board shall be appointed by the Lieutenant-Governor in Council and shall be

(a) a chairperson, who shall be a member of the Law Society of Newfoundland and who has completed at least 8 years in practice as a member;

(b) 1 member who is a public accountant but not a member of the institute; and

(c) 5 members who are members of the institute, nominated by the council.

(3) The board may receive and accept the evidence and information on oath or affirmation, affidavit or otherwise as it considers appropriate, whether it would be admissible as evidence in a court of law or not, and the chairperson of a meeting, or person acting as chairperson in the absence of the chairperson, may administer an oath or affirmation to a witness before the board.

(4) A member of the board shall, before so acting, take and sign before a person authorized to administer an oath or affirmation, an oath or affirmation in the following form:

"I, , do solemnly swear (affirm) that I will faithfully, truly and impartially to the best of my knowledge, skill and ability, execute and perform the office of member of the Public Accountants Licensing Board, and will not, except in the discharge of my duties, disclose to a person the evidence or other matter brought before the board." (In the case where an oath is taken, add "So help me God".).

(5) The members of the board shall hold office during pleasure.

RSN1970 c313 s3

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First meeting

4. (1) The board shall meet at the call of the chairperson within 2 weeks of its appointment.

(2) The Lieutenant-Governor in Council shall appoint a secretary to the board and shall make other necessary arrangements that will enable the board to function regularly under this Act.

RSN1970 c313 s4

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Other meetings of board

5. (1) The board shall meet, on a day to be appointed by the chairperson, in January and in July of each year, and at other times that may be determined by it, or when a special meeting is called by the chairperson.

(2) The board may act notwithstanding a vacancy in its membership provided there is a quorum present.

(3) In the absence of the chairperson, the members present at the meeting shall appoint a member to act as chairperson.

RSN1970 c313 s5

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Quorum

6. Three members shall constitute a quorum of the board.

RSN1970 c313 s6

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Voting

7. Matters that come up for a decision at a meeting of the board shall be decided by a majority of votes of members present, and, in the case of an equality of votes, the chairperson or other person presiding at the meeting shall have a 2nd or casting vote.

RSN1970 c313 s7

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Powers of board

8. The powers of the board include

(a) the granting or refusal of licences under this Act;

(b) the keeping of a roll of the persons licensed under this Act;

(c) the consideration of matters of common interest and concern to public accountants; and

(d) the prescribing of standards of educational and other qualifications required of applicants for a licence under this Act, the holding of examinations if found necessary and the setting and marking of examination papers for the purpose of determining the existence of those qualifications.

RSN1970 c313 s8

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Roll of public accountants

9. (1) The board shall maintain a roll to be known as the Roll of Public Accountants of Newfoundland and Labrador.

(2) The board shall enter on the roll the name and address and description of persons licensed under this Act, and the board shall remove

(a) the names of persons who apply in writing to the board requesting that their names be removed from the roll;

(b) the names of persons who die or cease to live in Canada;

(c) the names of persons whose licences have been revoked or not renewed under this Act; and

(d) names or particulars incorrectly entered on the roll.

(3) The board shall, as soon as possible after January 31 in each year, publish in the Gazette a list of the names and addresses of those who are on the roll for that year.

RSN1970 c313 s9

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Licensing by board

10. (1) A person who applies to the board and pays the prescribed fee is entitled to be licensed as a public accountant where the board is satisfied that he or she is a resident of Canada, possesses the educational, personal and moral qualifications that the board requires and has passed the examinations that the board recognizes or prescribes.

(2) An application under this section shall be dealt with by the board at its 1st meeting after the date on which the application is received by the board.

RSN1970 c313 s10

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Fitness of applicants

11. (1) The board shall license an applicant who is a member of the institute and may, for the purpose of licensing other applicants, accept evidence of membership in another existing organization of public accountants known to and approved of by the board as evidence adequate for licensing.

(2) The board may require evidence or apply tests which it may think appropriate to determine the fitness of an applicant who is not a member of the institute.

RSN1970 c313 s11

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Titles which public accountants may use

12. (1) The board, upon giving a licence to practise as a public accountant, shall assign to the licensee the titles or identifying words or abbreviations which the licensee may attach to his or her name when actually practising or may use, by way of courtesy, when in private employment.

(2) A person practising as a public accountant shall not, under penalty of suspension of the licence by the board, use or advertise distinguishing titles of identifying words or abbreviations other than those assigned to him or her by the board.

RSN1970 c313 s12

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Date of licence

13. (1) A licence granted or renewed under this Act shall bear the date on which it is granted or renewed.

(2) A licence granted or renewed under this Act shall expire on December 31 following the date of its issue; however, the licence-holder shall have 31 days of grace to the end of January following, to renew the licence and pay the fee, during which days of grace he or she shall be considered still to be licensed.

(3) A person holding a licence under this Act who wishes to have the licence renewed shall apply to the board and shall pay the prescribed fee.

(4) A person holding a licence under this Act who has applied to the board under this section shall be entitled to have the licence renewed, but nothing in this subsection shall prejudice or affect the right of the board to revoke a licence under this Act.

RSN1970 c313 s13

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Revocation of licence

14. (1) Where it appears to the board that a person licensed under this Act has been guilty of conduct unbecoming to that person in his or her capacity of a public accountant, the board may hold an inquiry.

(2) Where an inquiry is to be held under this section, the board shall immediately serve, on the person concerned, a notice of the proposed inquiry, specifying the time and place at which it is to be held and the subject matter of it, and the person concerned shall be entitled to be heard at the inquiry and may be represented by counsel.

(3) Where a person licensed under this Act has been found, on an inquiry held by the board, to be guilty of conduct unbecoming to him or her in the capacity of a public accountant, the board may suspend or revoke the licence granted to that person and remove his or her name from the roll.

(4) The board may, with the approval of the Lieutenant-Governor in Council, make regulations for the conduct of inquiries.

(5) A person whose licence is revoked under this section shall not, except as provided in section 16 or 17, be qualified for the grant of a licence.

(6) Nothing in this section shall diminish or enlarge the powers of the council to administer discipline in the case of a member of the institute.

RSN1970 c313 s15

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Notice of suspension

15. Where the board refuses the application of a person to be licensed under this Act or where the board suspends a licence or revokes a licence granted to a person and removes his or her name from the roll, it shall immediately serve written notice of the refusal or the suspension or revocation and removal on the person, and shall, in the notice, give reasons for its action.

RSN1970 c313 s16

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Right of appeal

16. A person aggrieved by the refusal of the board to grant him or her a licence or by the suspension of a licence or the revocation of a licence and the removal of his or her name from the roll may, within 1 month from the date on which notice of the refusal, suspension or revocation was served, appeal to a judge of the Trial Division against the refusal, suspension or revocation, and, on the appeal, the judge may confirm the decision of the board or may direct the board to grant or restore the licence and place the applicant's name on the roll, and the judge's order shall be final.

RSN1970 c313 s17; 1974 No57 Sch C;
1986 c42 Sch A

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Restoration

17. A person whose licence has been suspended or revoked may, upon application to the board, have the suspension cancelled or may be granted a new licence and have his or her name restored to the roll at the discretion of the board either with or without payment of a fee as the board may determine.

RSN1970 c313 s18

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Practice prohibited

18. (1) A person who is not licensed under this Act shall not

(a) take or use the name or title of "public accountant";

(b) practise as a public accountant; or

(c) wilfully pretend to be licensed as a public accountant.

(2) A person who contravenes this section is guilty of an offence and is, without prejudice to other proceedings which may be taken, liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding $250, and on failure to pay the fine to imprisonment for not more than 125 days for the 1st contravention and to a fine not exceeding $500, and on failure to pay that fine to imprisonment for not more than 250 days for a subsequent contravention.

(3) Where a contravention of this section by a person is occasioned by the fact that the person's licence has been revoked and that his or her name has been removed from the roll, it shall be a good defence to proceedings in respect of the contravention to prove that, at the time when the contravention is alleged to have been committed, a notice of the revocation and removal had not been served under this Act, or that

(a) the time for appealing to a judge of the Trial Division against the revocation and removal had not ended; or

(b) an appeal to the judge against the revocation and removal had been brought and had not been determined.

RSN1970 c313 s19; 1986 c42 Sch A

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Corporation not to practise as public accountant

19. (1) A corporation shall not practise as a public accountant, and a corporation contravening this section is guilty of an offence and is, without prejudice to other proceedings that may be taken, liable, upon summary conviction, to the monetary penalty provided for in section 28.

(2) A person licensed under this Act, being a member or director or shareholder or manager, or otherwise concerned in the formation, ownership or function of the corporation referred to in subsection (1), is guilty of an offence and is subject to the penalty provided for in section 28.

RSN1970 c313 s20

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Admission as C.A.

20. (1) A person who is licensed under this Act may apply to the council for permission to study the course leading to admission into the institute, and the council shall grant permission without requiring that the person be or become employed by or articled to a practising chartered accountant, but otherwise on its usual terms and conditions.

(2) A person who is licensed under this Act and who has lived in the province and practised public accountancy in the province for a period of at least 10 years may write the final examinations leading to admission into the institute, and, upon passing the examinations and, upon complying with the requirements of the institute with respect to age, good moral character and habits and preliminary education, shall be entitled, on payment of the required fee, to admission as a member of the institute.

(3) A person employed by a public accountant licensed under this Act may apply to the council to be registered as a registered student of the institute, and the council shall admit the person as a registered student without requiring that the person be or become employed by or articled to a practising chartered accountant, provided the person complies with the other requirements of the institute respecting registered students.

RSN1970 c313 s21

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Fund

21. (1) There shall be a fund into which money received by the board, whether from its own sources or from the Crown, shall be paid, and out of which shall be paid the administrative expenses of the board and the expenses incurred by the board in carrying out its functions under this Act and other liabilities properly incurred by the board.

(2) The board shall manage, administer and keep proper account of the fund and shall, not later than the last day of February in each year, submit to the Lieutenant-Governor in Council a report on the condition of the fund and on its administration in the preceding year.

RSN1970 c313 s22

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Remuneration

22. The board may pay

(a) to the members of the board allowances for travelling and subsistence expenses incurred in the discharge of their functions as members or as members of a committee of the board; and

(b) to the secretary and other officers and employees of the board the salaries and remuneration and gratuities

that the board determines.

RSN1970 c313 s23

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Annual audit

23. The accounts of the board shall be audited annually by the auditor general of the province.

RSN1970 c313 s24

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Regulations

24. (1) Subject to the approval of the Minister of Justice, the board may make regulations

(a) prescribing the fees to be paid for the grant and renewal of licences under this Act;

(b) prescribing the information to be provided and the form of a declaration to be made to the board in connection with an application for the grant or renewal of a licence under this Act;

(c) regulating the proceedings and meetings of the board; and

(d) generally, to give effect to the purpose of this Act.

(2) The board shall, on receiving a prescribed charge, supply a copy of regulations made under this Act and of forms prescribed by the regulations to a person applying for them.

RSN1970 c313 s25; 1986 c30 s8

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Signing authority

25. (1) Regulations, licences, notices and other documents made, granted or issued by the board may be signed on behalf of the board by the secretary or by another officer of the board that may be authorized by the board for that purpose.

(2) Cheques shall be signed by 2 or more persons as prescribed by the board.

RSN1970 c313 s26

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Service

26. (1) Service on a person or body of a notice or document required by or for the purposes of this Act shall be sufficient if the notice or document is sent by registered mail addressed to the person or body at the last address of the person appearing on the roll.

(2) A notice relating to the refusal to grant or renew a licence to a person or to the suspension or revocation of a licence which is sent by mail shall be sent by registered mail.

RSN1970 c313 s27

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Evidence

27. (1) The display or uttering by a person, firm or corporation of a letter, card, sign, advertisement, circular or other typed, printed, engraved or written instrument bearing a person's name in conjunction with the words "chartered accountant" or an abbreviation, or certified public accountant or an abbreviation or "certified general accountant" or an abbreviation, or "certified accountant" or "certified auditor" or an abbreviation, or "public accountant" or an abbreviation, or another word, name, title, initial, letter, designation, description or abbreviation implying that the person, firm or corporation is a public accountant and identified to so practise is, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, evidence, in proceedings brought under this Act

(a) that the person, firm or corporation whose name is so displayed caused or procured the display or uttering of the letter, card, sign, advertisement, circular, or other typed, printed, engraved, or written instrument; and

(b) that the person, firm or corporation is representing himself or herself or itself to be a chartered accountant, or certified public accountant, or certified general accountant, or certified accountant, or certified auditor, or registered public accountant, or a public accountant.

(2) In proceedings taken under this Act, evidence of the commission of a single act prohibited by this Act is sufficient to justify a conviction without evidence of a general course of conduct.

RSN1970 c313 s28

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General penalties

28. A person who contravenes this Act is guilty of an offence, and, where no other penalty is specifically provided by this Act, is liable upon summary conviction to a fine not exceeding $250, or in default of payment to imprisonment for a period not exceeding 14 days.

RSN1970 c313 s29

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Unlicensed persons may not recover charges

29. A person not licensed under this Act to practise as a public accountant shall not be able to recover at law from a person charges for work done in the nature of public accounting.

RSN1970 c313 s30

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Reservation in favour of The Society of Industrial Accountants

30. Nothing shall prevent a person who is a member of The Society of Management Accountants of Newfoundland, as constituted by the Management Accountants Act or a person who is a member of a body of accountants, incorporated under the laws of Canada or of a branch or affiliate of the body incorporated or organized in the province, from offering his or her services to the public for the purposes of preparing and certifying financial reports that are specifically designed to provide management with information and advice useful for controlling and planning the internal operation of the business under the control of the management, as distinguished from the external independent opinions, certificates, or reports made or furnished by public accountants as to the correctness, fairness and credibility of the general accounts of a business or institution.

RSN1970 c313 s31; 1977 c9 s6

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