BREAKING NEWS: Accountancy body approved to authorise and regulate probate activities

An accountancy body has been approved to authorise individuals and firms to carry out probate work.

ACCA  (the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) was one of the first professional accountancy bodies to be designated an approved regulator for probate activities in 2009, and has since successfully applied to the Legal Services Board to authorise practitioners to undertake probate work across England and Wales.

“This is an important development for practitioners who will soon be able to provide highly valued and comprehensive support to their clients following a bereavement,” said Ian Waters, head of standards at ACCA.

“Accountants already do a great deal of work in assessing and valuing a client’s business, and helping them to arrange their financial and taxation affairs. The ability to offer legal services, including the reserved activity of probate, complements the professional services that firms already provide to clients such as inheritance tax planning, estate management and wealth management.

“Our members are already the most trusted advisers to businesses across the country.”

Mark Gold FCCA, senior partner at Silver Levene, said:

“We are delighted that ACCA has taken this step. This is will allow us to provide another service that our clients have told us they wish to have from their accountant. It strengthens our business leadership role with our clients and other stakeholders.”

ACCA will proceed to implementing regulatory arrangements for probate activities that are proportionate and in the public interest. The Legal Activities Regulations 2018 will be contained within the ACCA Rulebook and will form part of the UK annex to the Chartered Certified Accountants’ Global Practising Regulations 2003 (GPRs).

The Regulations will only apply to the reserved legal activity of probate and the grant of probate or letters of administration in England and Wales, extending to non-contentious probate business only.

ACCA members seeking to become probate practitioners will be required to achieve and maintain competence to undertake probate activities. ACCA will provide the relevant skills training and support for members.

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