Email cyber-attacksThe email looks legitimate and trustworthy, and it appears to be from someone you know, such as a long-term client of the firm. The client requests a change in bank accounts and routing numbers to send a tax refund to the new account. Or the client requests a wire transfer of client funds to a new bank account.
Here are some reasons why CPAs should always contact their insurance carrier or agent for expert guidance:
By Suzanne M. Holl, CPA
Clients will sometimes ask their CPA to assist them with human resources-related matters. A common scenario involves the CPA assisting in the recruitment of a new CFO, or assisting the client to “redesign an accounting department.”
Even when covered by insurance, claims can have a significant impact on your practice in terms of time, money, professional reputation, and peace of mind. By knowing the warning signs of a claim, and calling your risk advisor early on, you can help minimize the impact of lost billable hours, revenue and sleep. What are the red flags? Here are five general warning signs that trouble may be brewing.
CPAs often run into situations where they have been preparing tax returns for a married couple for several years, and the couple decides to get a divorce. Divorcing spouses who ask their CPA to provide advice and services to both spouses often present a potential conflict of interest. Friendly divorcing couples don’t always stay friendly, and who do they blame when things don’t work out the way they had hoped? The CPA.
IMPACT’s fourth interactive War Story covers a case involving a large embezzlement, how it happened, and how the CPA firm could have avoided it.
Now is a good time to screen tax clients for potential problems. There is still time before tax season for a client to replace you in the event you decide to disengage. Client screening is excellent risk management as well as practice management.
The Loss Prevention Specialists at CAMICO consult with policyholders on a variety of topics, providing practice and risk management advice. In his video, Duncan B. Will, Loss Prevention Manager, shares an example of how CAMICO helps CPAs via our Advice Hotlines. One of the topics he mentions is fee collections – CAMICO frequently receives calls from CPAs seeking advice on this problematic area. Here are some practical tips on dealing with some of the issues.
1. Suing your client for fees.
This is a guaranteed cross complaint for malpractice, and more importantly, your insurance policy might not cover a counter suit to your suit for fees. So think twice, and call your attorney or risk adviser for guidance.
Social media has contributed to the blurring of boundaries between work lives and personal lives, partly because social media sites are open to both personal and work-related content, which can be posted from home computers as well as work computers.
Tax season is over, but your firm’s exposure to liability risk is not.
CAMICO often hears of CPAs who choose not to purchase Professional Liability Insurance because they think it is unnecessary. Here are 4 reasons why CPAs don’t think they need malpractice Insurance, and how this approach can be risky.
As a CPA, you need ‘Errors and Omissions’ insurance to cover damages from an error committed by your firm in providing professional services; and to protect the assets of your firm and partners from the financial consequences of a claim.