Letter of Engagement – Compilation and Taxation Services
Thank you for instructing us to act as your chartered accountants and business advisers. To ensure that there are no misunderstandings regarding the nature and extent of the services that we will provide to you, this letter together with the attached Service Requirements Checklist, record the entire agreement between us in relation to our engagement.
Terms of Engagement
On the basis of information and instructions you provide, we will compile any required financial statements for you. This engagement will be performed in accordance with Service Engagement Standard No. 2 Compilation of Financial Information (SES-2) issued by Chartered Accountants Australia + New Zealand. SES-2 specifies that on completion of the engagement we will issue a compilation report and an appropriate disclaimer which will form part of the financial statements. An example of this documents is attached for your reference.
In addition, we will carry out other tasks as specified by you on the Service Requirements Checklist.
The services to be provided will include all matters ancillary to those services such as, for example, dealing with and responding to queries raised by the Inland Revenue Department.
This letter of engagement will apply in respect of your financial year ended 31 March 2014 and for future years unless otherwise agreed.
Extent of Services
We will not audit, review or carry out any other checks on the accuracy or completeness of the information you provide. It is up to you to give us accurate and complete information to enable us to provide the services described in this letter and we accept no liability for the accuracy or completeness of any information supplied by you in any form. Accordingly, no assurance on any assertions contained in the financial information compiled will be provided.
Our engagement does not include the investigation or discovery of internal control weaknesses, errors, illegal acts or other irregularities, including without limitation, fraud, or non compliance with laws and regulations. However, we will inform you of any such matters which come to our attention during the course of our engagement.
The information you are to supply and any other information that we consider necessary to complete the engagement must be provided in a timely manner in order for the assignment to be completed on a timely basis.
If the services to be provided include tax compliance services then the following will apply:
- You may use our office address as the mailing address for assessments and/or correspondence from Inland Revenue. If you do this we will send you copies of any letters received along with recommendations for your reply if necessary.
- If you use our office address as the mailing address for assessments we will check the assessments and let you know the amounts and due dates of tax instalments. You are then responsible for paying the correct tax on time.
- We will advise you about any amounts of tax to be paid and the due dates for payment. If your tax seems to have been overpaid at any time we will make a refund claim on your behalf.
- In the case of tax compliance services our function is limited to providing you with information and advice to aid you in making decisions about your tax. However, the ultimate responsibility for making those decisions remains with you.
- You are responsible for what appears in your tax returns. This means you must ensure that the information you give us is accurate and complete.
- If you choose to use your own address as the mailing address for assessments and/or correspondence from Inland Revenue we recommend that you provide us immediately with copies of any correspondence you receive from Inland Revenue. This is because there may be a deadline for reply that you are unaware of.
- You are ultimately responsible for paying any Inland Revenue Department penalties arising from late payments, errors, wrong estimates or any other reason. However, if any penalties are incurred directly due to our error or omission, then we are responsible for such penalties.
Independence is not required for a compilation engagement. If we are aware that we are not independent of the entity for which we are preparing financial statements, this fact will be stated in our compilation report. However, we will not conduct a comprehensive review to determine whether we are or are not independent of the entity.
Use and Distribution of the Financial Information
We understand that the intended use and distribution of the financial information we will compile is for the special purpose management reporting and of calculating income tax. If this should change in any material respect, you will inform us immediately.
You may make copies of any reports for your own internal use or for providing to a third party. However, we accept no duty or responsibility to any party other than yourself who may seek to rely on our reports and furthermore you indemnify us against any claim by such other party in respect of the reports.
Information and Disclosure
All assignments will be conducted in accordance with the professional standards, rules and ethical requirements of Chartered Accountants Australia + New Zealand. Information we obtain in the course of this engagement is subject to confidentiality requirements, in addition to our obligations under the Privacy Act 1993. We will not disclose that information to other parties without your express consent, except as required by law or professional obligations. In order for us to perform your assignments efficiently we require authority to liaise with both the Inland Revenue Department and other financial institutions that you are connected to. An Authority to Disclose and Receive Information form for each entity and individual is attached to this letter which we need signed and returned to us.
You are the judge of our performance. If you think the fee is excessive for the work done, you pay only what you think is reasonable. If you are dissatisfied with our work you are invited to contact myself, I will investigate without cost to you and suggest a remedy.
Limitation of Liability
At all times we will use reasonable skill and care in providing our services to you. However, in spite of this our liability to you whether in contract, tort, equity or otherwise, for any loss or damage or expenses (including legal costs) suffered or incurred directly by you as a direct result of any act or omission by us in providing our services, shall be limited to a maximum amount equal to the fee (excluding GST, disbursements and expenses) paid to us by you in respect of the services in question. If the Services were provided in respect of more than one financial year the fee on which the liability amount is based shall be the fee paid in respect of the financial year in respect of which the act or omission occurred. Any claim against us must be brought within twelve months of the date on which we complete the services.
Fees and Payment
Unless otherwise agreed with you in writing our fees are calculated on the basis of the time spent on the assignment by our team and on the levels of skill and responsibility involved.
If required by you we will provide you with either an estimate, or firm quotation, of the fees involved prior to commencing an assignment.
Our invoices will generally be issued on a monthly basis and all invoices will be due for payment on the 20th of the month following invoice date. We reserve the right to charge interest on overdue amounts at a maximum rate of 15% per annum.
You should be aware that, like all other providers of services, we are entitled to retain possession of your records that have been used in relation to this engagement until outstanding fees are settled.
So that we comply with the Privacy Act 1993, the Tax Administration Act 1984 (to the extent that it applies) and any other law relating to privacy while providing services to you, you agree to complete and execute the Authority to Disclose and Receive Information forms attached to this letter. We may ask you for other authorisations if necessary.
Money We Hold for You
We may sometimes hold money on your behalf. It will be held in trust in a client bank account, which is completely separate from the firm’s funds. Chartered Accountants Australia + New Zealand has strict rules about the way accountancy firms must handle their clients’ money and we follow these rules.
Ownership of Work Papers
Material that you provide to us remains yours and will be returned to you when the engagement is completed. Work papers that we create remain our property.
Where we provide taxation services for you we will store tax records that we hold on your behalf for a period of seven years after the applicable balance date. At the end of that period, unless you ask us to send that information to you, the records will be destroyed using a secure document destruction service.
Non accounting advice and financial advice
This firm does not provide legal or financial advice. Any opinion expressed should be confirmed by the appropriate professional. Any comment made on the subject of legal or investment matters should be interpreted as only a personal view and not professional advice.
This letter applies for future years unless you or we wish to end or change the arrangement.
If you have any questions regarding this letter of engagement please do not hesitate to call us. It is a requirement of Chartered Accountants Australia + New Zealand that we provide you with this letter and that you return a signed copy to us. In order to signify your acceptance of the terms of engagement, please sign this letter and return it to us with the following:
- “Authority to Disclose and Receive Information” forms (one for each entity); and
- Service Requirements Checklists (one for each entity)
We appreciate your business and thank you for engaging us.
The Accountants Office Limited
Acknowledged on behalf of XYZ Limited by:
Signature _____________________________________ Date ________________________
The Accountants Office Limited
Authority to Disclose and Receive Information (Business)
Name of Client XYZ Limited
IRD No. xxx-xxx-xxx
We hereby record the following:
- That the firm of The Accountants Office Limited has been engaged to provide tax compliance services.
- That The Accountants Office Limited is authorised to communicate with the Inland Revenue Department (“IRD”) by any method of communication on behalf of the above named entity and to disclose relevant information regarding the entity’s taxation affairs to the IRD for the purpose of providing such tax compliance services.
- That we authorise the IRD, for all purposes under the Privacy Act 1993, the Tax Administration Act 1994 and any other law relating to privacy, to disclose to The Accountants Office Limited by any method of communication such information regarding the entity’s taxation affairs as The Accountants Office Limited may request from time to time in the course of providing tax compliance services for the entity.
- Hereby authorise the entity’s bankers, solicitors, investment advisers and insurers for all purposes under the Privacy Act 1993, to disclose to The Accountants office Limited such information as they may request from time to time in the course of providing tax compliance services for the entity.
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