Students members rights?

axl2derv Registered Posts: 172 πŸŽ† 🐘 πŸŽ†
Hi all,

I was wondering if anybody will be able to answer my question. I am a student member and I am wanting to start my own practice from home with the intent to expand in the future. I am not far off completing the AAT and applying for membership. I was wanting to know if I am allowed to open a practice and what services I am allowed to offer. I feel confident in bookkeeping and drafting financial statements for the tax return. These where the two services I was wanting to offer to start with. I also wanted to know if i was able to use any letters after my name such as AAT since i am not a MAAT yet.

Please advice

Many thanks



  • claudialowe
    claudialowe Registered Posts: 275
    Hi Carl

    Yes you can practice - indeed anyone with or without experience can! However the AAT insist that you only carry out work that you are competent to do, and that you have PI insurance. You are not, however, allowed to use any letters after your name until you have been accepted as a member of the AAT and registered as a MIP.

    Hope this helps.

  • axl2derv
    axl2derv Registered Posts: 172 πŸŽ† 🐘 πŸŽ†
    Hi Claudia,

    Many thanks for your reply. Could you please explain the PI and professional cover from another accountant?


    CHUNKYMONKEY Registered Posts: 29 πŸ’« 🐯 πŸ’«
    you need professional insurance (indemnity insurance) you can get this from Trafalgar at a cheap rate. There is a link on the AAT info screen, think its under MIP info. It will also be in the pack they send you when you apply to be an MIP. The professional cover, well you have to ask accountants will they be your cover in case you were sick long term and cant see to your clients. I asked around on the MIP list and got someone to help quite easily. I just needed their name, address, AAT number etc and to know they had up to date CPD.

    I've just sent my forms off but its taken ages so im getting worried. hope i filled it in ok lol
  • axl2derv
    axl2derv Registered Posts: 172 πŸŽ† 🐘 πŸŽ†
    Thanks for the advice.

    Do you happen to know what the PI is actaully for? If you have an accountant to cover, do you need PI?


  • Bluewednesday
    Bluewednesday Registered Posts: 1,624
    PI is insurance if someone sues you for incompetence etc - I don't think another accounting technician will cover you for that!!
  • peugeot
    peugeot Registered Posts: 624
    I would recommend ringing student services and getting their viewpoint on it.

    It's one thing doing a bit of part-time MIP work (i.e. the odd VAT return/bookkeeping), but it's certainly another thing dealing with a client's affairs.

    It is not something you should go into lightly. I note from your post that you want to deal in drafting financial statements and tax. Before you take the jump, ask yourself the following questions:
    • Do you understand FRSSE 2007
    • Do you understand the forthcoming Companies Act changes
    • Do you understand disclosure requirements
    • Do you understand the full concept of what Directors Remuneration is
    • Could you handle a client who revalues their buildings
    • Could you handle a client with complex tax affairs
    • Could you deal with the "what is the difference between employed v self employed question.
    • Do you know about partnerships and LLP's.
    • Do you have sufficient tax knowledge
    • Do you know about what expenses a client can claim if they work from home
    • Do you know what happens if a client has self employed income/dividend income and employment income
    • Do you know how to handle a self assessment enquiry

    These are the majority of things you need to consider before jumping into self employment (because in practice, this is what you're going to be up against) and as a student PI insurance is something you seriously need to consider - especially as the AAT don't seem to have much regulation over self employment (I would be shocked if AAT offers students PI insurance to practice).

    Every MIP on here (I am sure) would agree that it is a huge step and one that should not be taken lightly.

    Kind regards
  • axl2derv
    axl2derv Registered Posts: 172 πŸŽ† 🐘 πŸŽ†
    Hi Steve,

    Thanks for the advice. I am some what familiar with these principles you have highlighted. I have worked in practice before and covered many of these. My aim was to start off with small sole traders and build up from there as sole trader accounts are very easy in comparison to ltd. I don't currently work in practice but I may be starting a new job soon as a bookkeeper for a company that has many premises under partnership and ltd status. I have also volunteered to work one day a week for a self employed accountant so I should be gaining valuable experience for when I am ready to start up.

    Many thanks

  • peugeot
    peugeot Registered Posts: 624
    Hi Carl,

    Having worked in practice will give you a good head start as you will be familiar with those principles. My concern (which most people on here are aware of, but which doesn't apply to you) is that students sometimes complete technician and then break away into self employment without any experience of being self-employed or any experience of dealing with clients affairs.

    When I first started in practice it was an eye-opener at just how much you had to service a client - payroll, accounts, VAT, self-assessment, P11D, corporation tax. The list was (and still is) endless!!

    Good luck in your quest and I'm sure you will be successful.:thumbup1:

    Best wishes
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