15 Sep Confidentiality Agreement Accounting Firm
as part of the peer review. It is therefore quite practical to add an exception to this type of provision that allows the audit firm to share its working papers for peer review or in response to legal proceedings such as.B a subpoena. Setting customer expectations for this obligation at the end of an order subsequently avoids unnecessary conflicts. Clients of audit firms increasingly need NDAs before they start committing. However, the typical NDA form has not been established taking into account the relationship between the accountant and the client and can therefore lead to false customer expectations and unexpected conflicts with professional standards and legal requirements. As a result, audit firms should be vigilant when reviewing standard NDNs or service agreements with confidentiality rules. While it may be acceptable to use a boilerplate NDA to discuss a possible future business relationship between the parties, the terms of such a “prospecting” NDA should end before a final services agreement is concluded. At this stage, audit firms should pay particular attention to the three themes mentioned above. If in doubt, go with a lawyer who is aware of the unique issues facing ASAs. There is no general prohibition for members to sign confidentiality agreements, but be especially careful before doing so, and it may not even be necessary.
Increasingly, CPA clients are imposing confidentiality agreements as a prerequisite for providing professional services to the company. These may take the form of a separate confidentiality agreement (NDA) or a necessary provision in the order letter. Requests for signed confidentiality agreements can sometimes occur during the order, since the documents are requested from the client. If you are a member of the ICAEW, affiliate or employee of an authorized company with access to member companies, you can discuss your specific situation with the Ethics Advisory Service on +44 (0) 1908 248 250. . .