Tax Practitioners Board (TPB) Chair Dale Boucher has confirmed the requirement details for registered Tax and BAS agents to have professional indemnity (PI) insurance.
Boucher said, “The TPB has been aware that a high percentage of BAS agents did not have PI insurance when they first became registered with the Board. By introducing PI insurance as part of our regulatory requirements, coming into effect from 1 July 2011, we are working to ensure that tax agent and BAS services are provided to the Australian public in accordance with appropriate professional standards. This will also give better protection for consumers of these services.”
“Setting a PI insurance requirement that is both realistic and practical for the tax practitioner profession will help to achieve these aims.”
PI insurance is not new to many tax agents. Agents who are already members of professional associations have this type of cover as standard practice. If an agent has PI insurance cover their clients are better protected from financial loss or damage as a result of any mistakes or negligent actions by their agent.
Under the Board’s policy not every agent will have to hold PI insurance cover themselves. For example, employees of firms will be covered under their firm’s policy. There are also a number of agents who do not run a business and they will not need to hold PII either.
The announcement of the Board’s PI insurance approach has come after nearly a year’s work, including careful consideration of comments received through working closely with associations, agents, the insurance industry, and from public feedback on a recent exposure draft.
The Board also said it plans to contact all agents in the New Year to explain their PI insurance cover obligations.
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