Patron Law Blog

Accountants & Negligence – Your Legal Rights

If you feel you have suffered a financial shortfall due to negligence or lack of care from an accountant, then you may be entitled to pursue a claim and sue your accountant for negligence.

Accountants are highly skilled professionals within the financial industry who are expected to provide their clients with a duty of care and responsibility whilst carrying out work on their behalf.

We understand that whilst accountants are typically meticulous in their work, mistakes can happen that may result in a financial loss or legal implications for their clients.

If you believe your accountant has made a mistake or has been negligent in any way, we always recommend that you seek legal advice as soon as possible.

Our team of professional negligence solicitors are on hand to assist you by reviewing your matter in detail and providing expert legal advice on all available options.

What is professional negligence?

Whilst engaging their professional services, your accountant is supposed to look after your financial interests, whilst providing their professional skills and a high level of care.

To prove that your accountant has been negligent, you must be able to provide evidence that suggests you have been affected by the ‘three grounds’ of professional negligence, which are:

  • Breach of Duty
  • Causation/Loss
  • Duty of Care

All three elements (breach of duty, care and causation) must be present for your claim to be considered successful.

Examples of accountant negligence

Your accountant may be found negligent if they have:

  • Conducted audits incorrectly
  • Failed to detect fraud
  • Failed to prepare accounting documents
  • Inaccurately valued company assets
  • Missed an important deadline (e.g. annual tax return)
  • Provided inaccurate tax advice

If you believe that you have experienced negligence from your accountant, we are on hand to take the necessary steps to resolve matters.

Could I make a complaint?

Often it is possible to register a complaint against an accountant with a senior partner of the firm, who may be able to provide further assistance with the matter.

Additionally, accountants have various regulatory bodies that provide complaints procedures to dissatisfied clients.

Both the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants and the Institute of Chartered Accountants can discipline members for cases of professional misconduct.

If you need advice on making a complaint or have already made a complaint but are unsatisfied and wish to consider other options, then please do not hesitate to contact us.

Will I need to go to court?

We will assess your circumstances and advise you on whether you have grounds for a claim.

Once the matter has been assessed, our team will contact the relevant professional to make them aware of the claim and will warn them that court action will be taken if necessary. Wherever possible, we will always attempt to obtain compensation without the need for court proceedings.

Should litigation become necessary, we will ensure that you have the best experts on your side to substantiate your claim through court proceedings.

We also work with leading industry experts to acquire the best evidence to support your claim.

What is the time limit to pursue a claim?

To pursue a claim against your accountant you will typically have up to six years from the time the negligence occurred.

We always recommend that you seek legal assistance as soon as possible, to avoid missing any important deadlines.

How can we help you?

Pursuing a claim against a professional such as an accountant may seem like a daunting prospect. Our team are here to help you and will aim to make the process as simple as possible.

We will make an initial assessment of your claim and will advise you as to what your options may be.

We always recommend taking advice from a solicitor at an early stage so that you are given the best legal advice at the earliest opportunity.

Contact Us

To speak to our specialist lawyers, please call +44 203 841 7470 or email for more information.