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New Client Dilema

monkeypuzzle47monkeypuzzle47 Feels At HomeMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 134
Advice please....

I was recently instructed to complete a set of accounts and a tax return for a new client, we were in contact up to the point when i sent off the paperwork for her to sign. It has been a few months and I have heard nothing from her. I have tried calling a few times to see when she will be sending back the acs but have been unsucessful thus far. I calculated that the client had tax of £1500k to pay, based on information that was supplied to me. I have just been online to view the clients account, and It shows that the clients tax return was recieved by hmrc on the 19th october, with a new calculation which is considerably less than what i had calculated. This return was not submitted by me.
I have a signed letter of engagement from the client as well as all her accounts papers which I usually dont send back until payment from the client has been received. Also my invoice to the client is 3 months outstanding. I have sent statements and reminder letter.


Any advice as to the correct way i should approach this client?

thanks

jenny

Comments

  • burgburg Experienced Mentor GloucesterModerator, FMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 1,441
    If I am understanding correctly that, You drafted the accounts and tax computation from all the known records and information. This has then, for some unknown reason, been adjusted to pay lower tax and submitted to HMRC?

    If this is correct then you most likely have an obligation to report this to SOCA under the Money Laundering Regulations. A reasonable person would have reasonable grounds to suspect that money has been gained as a proceed of crime, avoiding paying tax due. It may turn out that they have acted within the law and new information came to light but I would protect your own back.

    You have quite a few ways forward. You could approach the client without letting on what you know or you could let them know.

    I would certainly be chasing the money for the fee note raised.

    I would now consider the client as gone. I would have now lost trust in the information the client is providing and that they are trying to obtain your advice for nothing. I would also though be careful as to how you progress with the situation as if it is approached in a in appropriate manner you may find the client ends up telling people to avoid you. Sadly people will inevitably be swayed by that.

    Best of luck with everything. I'm sure many more ideas will come along so you can have pleanty of ideas to make your decision from
    Regards,

    Burg
  • monkeypuzzle47monkeypuzzle47 Feels At Home MAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 134
    burg wrote: »
    If I am understanding correctly that, You drafted the accounts and tax computation from all the known records and information. This has then, for some unknown reason, been adjusted to pay lower tax and submitted to HMRC?

    Yes this is correct!

    Thank you for your response.
  • AK002AK002 Font Of All Knowledge Registered Posts: 2,492
    Yup i'd be having a word with SOCA, it could be nothing, but once you've mentioned it the onus on you disappears..
  • deanshepherddeanshepherd Font Of All Knowledge Registered Posts: 1,809
    I'd be more concerned about getting paid. I use Thomas Higgins to chase up invoices.
  • JmannJmann Feels At Home Registered Posts: 68
    One point to cosider is disengagement letter. I guess that you are authorised agents.
  • monkeypuzzle47monkeypuzzle47 Feels At Home MAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 134
    client paid me today. it was a complete misunderstanding, the client sent off the tax return that i did by mistake not realising she needed to return it to me signed (even though in my letter this is clearly explained). it in fact has been received by hmrc but not processed yet. the lower balance that i was seeing was last years ac. So it was me im afraid jumping to conculsions.

    oh dear - i need a coffee!!

    just happy payment has been made to me now, thanks for all advice given.
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