Terms and conditions of a compilation engagement

Below are the terms and conditions under which we (Hounsell Accounting Ltd) undertake compilation engagements, including the preparation of financial statements and tax returns for you (our client).  By accepting these terms and conditions you will agree to the following:

  1. Who may instruct us? You confirm that you, and any other person you nominate in writing from time to time (provided we have acknowledged such nomination), are authorised to give us instructions and information on behalf of all persons we are acting for and to receive our advice and documents on their behalf.

If we are acting for a business, and we receive conflicting advice, information, or instructions from different persons, we may refer the matter to the board of directors, partners, or proprietors (as applicable) and act only as requested by them. ! Include this clause only if you are providing services to a couple, and it is appropriate to this engagement.

  1. You and your spouse/partner (if applicable). We will advise you and your spouse/partner on the basis that you are a family unit with shared interests. We may deal with either of you, and may discuss with either of you the affairs of the other. If you wish to change these arrangements, please let us know.

  2. Know your customer. We are subject to New Zealand’s Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act 2009. Where we are required to conduct customer due diligence, this Act does not allow us to act, or continue to act, for our clients unless we have conducted that due diligence.

Accordingly, we may be required to verify your identity for the purposes of the anti-money laundering laws. We may request from you such information as we require for these purposes and make searches of appropriate databases.

  1. Financial Reporting framewor Unless otherwise agreed, we will compile special purpose financial statements that comply with income tax principles, and which follow the disclosure requirements in the Tax Administration (Financial Statements) Order 2014.

  2. Your responsibilities. You must provide us with all information necessary for dealing with your affairs including information which we reasonably request, in sufficient time to enable our services to be completed before any applicable deadline. We will rely on such information being true, correct, and complete and will not audit the information. You authorise us to approach such third parties as may be appropriate for information that we consider necessary to deal with your affairs. You must keep us informed on a timely basis of changes in your circumstances that may affect our services.

  3. Qualifications on our services. To the extent our services involve the performance of services established by law, nothing in these terms reduce our obligations under such law.

Unless otherwise specified, our services cannot be relied upon to disclose irregularities and errors, including fraud and other illegal acts, in your affairs.

Where our engagement is recurring, we may amend these terms where we consider it is necessary or appropriate to do so. If you do not accept such amendments, you must notify us promptly in which case you may terminate our engagement in accordance with section 18 below and those amendments will not apply prior to such termination

  1. Reliance on advice. We will endeavour to record all advice on important matters in writing. Advice given verbally is not intended to be relied upon unless confirmed in writing. If we provide verbal advice (for example during a meeting or telephone conversation) that you wish to rely on, you must ask us to confirm the advice in writing.

You must not act on advice given by us on an earlier occasion without first confirming with us that the advice is still valid.

  1. Investment and financial advisory advice. We are prohibited from providing you with investment or financial advice regulated under the Financial Markets Conduct Act 2013, as amended by the Financial Services Legislation Amendment Act 2019.

  2. Professional obligations and confidentiality. We are required to comply with all applicable by-laws, rules, regulations, professional and ethical standards and guidelines of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand and the New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants (NZICA).

These requirements include the NZICA Code of Ethics, which among other things contains confidentiality requirements. In accordance with these requirements, we will not disclose information we obtain in the course of this engagement to other parties, without your express consent, except as required by:

    • laws and regulations (for example, disclosures required under the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering Financing of Terrorism Act 2009 (including to a third-party auditor)).

    • professional obligations including:

      • the provisions of the NZICA Code of Ethics that applies if we become aware of actual or potential ‘non-compliance with laws and regulations’ (NOCLAR). Where any such non-compliance poses substantial harm (such as adverse consequences to investors, creditors, employees, or the public), we may be required to disclose the matter to an appropriate level of management or those charged with governance and/or an appropriate authority.

      • the provisions of the NZICA Rules and Professional Standards that subject us to practice review, trust account audits, investigations, and disciplinary procedures. These rules require us to disclose to NZICA, it’s practice reviewers and/or it’s disciplinary bodies our files and workpapers including client information. In accepting this engagement, you acknowledge that, if requested, our files related to this engagement, may be made available to NZICA, it’s practice reviewers and/or it’s disciplinary bodies. Employees and contractors of NZICA are also bound by confidentiality under contract and by the NZICA Code of Ethics.

  1. Conflicts of interest. We will inform you if we become aware of any conflict of interest in our relationship with you (including between the various persons this engagement covers) or in our relationship with you and another client. Where conflicts are identified which cannot be managed in a way that protects your interests or you do not consent to the way in which we propose to manage the conflict then we will be unable to provide further services to some or all the persons to whom this engagement applies. If this arises, we will inform you promptly.

We may act for other clients whose interests are not the same as or are adverse to yours, subject to the obligations of conflicts of interest and confidentiality referred to above.

  1. Fees and payment. Unless otherwise agreed, our fees will be charged on a time and materials basis, and will been set based on the level of skill, responsibility, importance and value of the advice, as well as the level of risk. Any disbursements and expenses we incur in the course of performing our services will be added to our invoices where appropriate. Payment is due no later than the 20th day of the month following invoice.

If we have provided you with an estimate of our fees for any specific work, this is an estimate only and our actual fees may vary.

  1. Lien. If permitted by law and not prohibited by professional standards or guidelines, we may exercise a lien over all materials or records in our possession relating to all engagements for you until all outstanding fees and disbursements are paid in full

  2. Disclosure permissions. In accepting this engagement, you provide us with your express consent to disclose your information to:

    • our service providers or regulatory bodies to the extent required to perform our services in respect to this engagement;

    • our professional advisors or insurers to the extent required to protect our interests in respect to this engagement; and

    • our external peer reviewer to the extent required to review this engagement

We will take reasonable steps to ensure any such recipient (other than a regulatory body) keeps such information confidential on the same basis we maintain in respect to your information. We may retain your information during and after our engagement to comply with our legal requirements or as part of our regular IT back-up and archiving practices and also for professional reasons (e.g. to perform the work under this engagement or to comply with our professional and ethical obligations). We will continue to hold such information confidentially.

  1. Privacy. We may collect, store, use and disclose your personal information for the purposes of providing the services pursuant to this engagement to you and to comply with our obligations in section 8 above and in accordance with the disclosure exceptions outlined in section 12 above. We will comply with the Privacy Act 2020 when collecting, storing, using and sharing your personal information. Our Privacy Policy provides further detailsand can be found on our website at http://hounsell.co.nz/legal-and-privacy/

  2. Ownership of materials. We own the copyright and all other intellectual property rights in everything we create in connection with this engagement. Unless we agree otherwise, anything we create in connection with this agreement may be used by you only for the purpose for which you have engaged us. All working papers prepared by us (in any form whatsoever, including physical and electronic) remain our property. We will retain these papers in accordance with our normal record keeping practices in accordance with our professional and legal obligations.

  3. Limitation of liability. To the maximum extent permitted by law, our maximum aggregate liability (including of all our directors and members under or in connection with this engagement or its subject matter is limited to $10,000. You agree not to bring any claim against any of our directors, members or employees in their personal capacity.

To the maximum extent permitted by law, we are not liable to you for:

    • indirect, special or consequential losses or damages of any kind; or

    • liability arising due to the acts or omissions of any other person or circumstances outside our reasonable control, or your breach of these terms.

  1. Limitation of third-party rights. Our advice and information is for your sole use, and we accept no responsibility to any third party, unless we have expressly agreed that a specified third party may rely on our work.

  2. Termination. Each of us may terminate this agreement by giving not less than [21] days’ notice in writing to the other party except where a conflict of interest has arisen, you fail to cooperate with us or we have reason to believe that you have provided us or any other person with misleading or factually inaccurate information, in which case we may terminate this agreement immediately.

  3. Communication. You must advise of any changes to your contact details. We may send any communications to the last contact details you have provided. Unless you instruct us otherwise, we may, where appropriate, communicate with you and with third parties via email or by other electronic means. The recipient is responsible for virus checking emails and any attachments. There is a risk of non-receipt, delayed receipt, inadvertent misdirection, or interception by third parties in any form of communication, whether electronic, postal, or otherwise. We are not responsible for any such matters beyond our control.

  4. Applicable Law. Our engagement is governed by New Zealand law. The New Zealand courts have non-exclusive jurisdiction in relation to any dispute between us.

  5. Interpretation. If any provision of these terms is void, that provision will be severed, and the remainder will continue to apply.

  6. Disputes and complaints. If you have any concerns about our costs or services, please speak to the director responsible for this engagement. To resolve your concerns, we have policies and procedures in place to deal appropriately with complaints and will use best endeavours to resolve a complaint or dispute to the mutual satisfaction of the parties involved. We may require you to detail your complaint in writing to allow us to fully investigate any concerns that you raise.