Handover - What do I ask for?

Pete12 Registered Posts: 58 💫 🐯 💫
Good morning,

Generally - can anyone list the information/items/records I:

1) could reasonably request (and expect)
2) would ideally request

of a former accountant/tax advisor when their client leaves them and wishes to come to me?

More specifically my query relates to a sole-trader, who manufactures eco-friendly cosmetics from home, who, after being messed about by their former "accountant" and subsequently faced HMRC fines has recently instructed an (expensive) accountant to put things in order and has now expressed an interest in appointing me. In this situation, is there any particular information I should ask for in my request to the outgoing accountant?

Many thanks



  • jamesm96
    jamesm96 Registered Posts: 523
    Here's the text from our standard letter for you:

    "We have been asked by «LMCLName» to accept appointment as accountants. Please confirm that you have no professional objection to our acting for «LMCLName».

    Should you have no such objection, please let us have the following information:

    • Copy of the latest audited accounts of the company.

    • The detailed trial balance from which the latest audited accounts were prepared.

    • Lead schedules showing the detailed breakdown of all the figures in the latest audited balance sheet.

    • Copy of the fixed asset register, if this is maintained by yourselves.

    • The detailed make up of the share premium account/capital reserve/other special reserves.

    • Copies of key agreements, valuations etc. in relation to the original acquisition of properties/investments.

    • Details of the final audit adjustments to the latest audited accounts.

    • Latest agreed corporation tax return.

    • Latest agreed corporation tax computations.

    • Copies of any corporation tax computations which have been prepared but
    remain to be submitted and/or agreed.

    • Copies of the latest forms P11D agreed and submitted on behalf of the directors, if this was done by yourselves.

    • Details of any outstanding corporation tax, value added tax or National Insurance enquiries (if any). Please let us have copies of all relevant correspondence.

    • The company's statutory registers and minute book, if these are maintained by yourselves.

    • The Companies House authentication code for web filing.

    In addition, please forward any other information which is necessary for the performance of our duties as accountant to the company.

    Yours faithfully"

    Then if there's anything that we know to be irrelevant (or, indeed, anything that we know we'll specifically need) then we'll edit the letter accordingly.

    To be honest, though, I think most accountants don't really read the detail of the letter and they just send us whatever they've got on their system / files.
  • Pete12
    Pete12 Registered Posts: 58 💫 🐯 💫

    Many thanks - this is excellent!

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