Code Of Professional Ethics By American Institute Of Certified Public

1158 words - 5 pages

Code of Professional Ethics by American Institute of Certified Public Accountants

Introduction

"A code of professional ethics is a voluntary assumption of self discipline
above and beyond the requirements of the law. The Code of Ethical Conduct serves
the highly practical purpose to notify the public that the profession will
protect the public interest" (Carey, Doherty: p 3). When people need a doctor, a
lawyer or a certified public accountant, they seek someone whom they can trust
to do a good job, not for himself but for them. People assume that the hired
professional is qualified since they cannot appraise him. They must take it on
faith that he is competent. That is why professionals are distinguished from
businesses and why there is a need for ethical regulations.

The Code of Professional Ethics

The Code of Professional Ethics for public accountants was developed by the
American Institute of Public Accountant and includes four different categories.
The first, Concepts of Professional Ethics, establishes major requirements for
CPAs in different areas of their day-to-day professional activities. The main
parts of the Code are: Independence, Integrity and Objectivity in the practice
of public accounting, Competence and technical standards, Responsibilities to
clients, Responsibilities to colleagues and Other responsibilities and
Practices. Independence has always been the fundamental concept to the
accounting profession. In fact it is the most essential to the practice of all
professions. The financial reports produced by CPAs would be of little value to
the public unless CPAs maintain their independence. Independence has always been
associated with integrity and objectivity. Since faults on financial
statements may be the result of either a honest mistake or a lack of integrity
it is imperative to associate the notion of independence with the objectivity
and integrity. As part of the requirements by the Code of ethics, CPA should
avoid any relationships that may result in the CPA's becoming dependent on the
particular client. Such relationships include financial interests and client
management. It is very important that the opinion of the CPA reflects the
results of operating decisions taken by the client and not any underlying ideas
which may be the case if a CPA takes part in the decision making process of the
company.

Another important issue discussed in the Code of ethics is competence and
responsibility of CPAs. It establishes a basic ethical obligation that a CPA
shall not render any services which he is not competent to render. Within this
topic, the code mentions continuing improvement of the competence of CPAs in all
areas in which they engage. In fact, the requirements of competence are
established by law. If a man renders a service he is not familiar with, he
commits a fraud on the public (However, CPAs are supposed in a reasonable manner
to carry this principle beyond). The code of ethics assumes that in situations...

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