Types of recourse

There are three main types of recourse against a CPA:

  1. disciplinary remedies are lodged with the Disciplinary Council to sanction a CPA who has violated the laws and regulations governing the profession, in particular professional standards, the code of ethics and the other regulations of the Order; 
  2. remedies respecting professional fees to contest the amount of fees charged by the CPA for services rendered; 
  3. other legal remedies are conducted through the courts to obtain, among other things, financial compensation in cases where a CPA may have caused civil damages (civil remedy) or to sanction a CPA who has committed a penal or criminal act (criminal remedy). 

All CPAs must take out professional liability insurance, including members who practice outside of Quebec and Canada. Service of professional liability proceedings may validly be made upon the Attorney In Fact in Canada for CPAs who are enrolled in the Order’s group professional liability insurance plan.1

Only disciplinary remedies and remedies respecting fees are within the jurisdiction of the syndic.

The three types of recourse may be launched simultaneously, circumstances permitting. Given the legal requirement to take an oath of discretion, the syndic cannot testify before civil or criminal courts.

1 CPAs who practice at BDO, Deloitte, EY, KPMG, PwC, RCGT and Richter have been excluded from the Order’s group professional liability insurance plan. CPAs who practice at these firms must maintain professional liability coverage at least equal to that provided under the group plan and submit proof thereof to the Order.