APEC Economy: Canada

Accountancy Services – General background

In Canada, accounting is regulated by provincial / territorial governments and membership in a professional accounting body is required to deliver tax and assurance services to the public.

There are three recognized professional accounting bodies, the:

All bodies have substantially equivalent qualification requirements which include a Bachelor’s degree specifically and related courses and examinations, plus a minimum 3 years of senior level accounting/assurance experience.

For CICA-Canada, Generally, the practice of public accounting is defined as providing or offering to provide one or more of the following services to the public:

Some Provinces may not require a license for taxation.

Licensing Requirements

The regulation of professional accountants, including auditors, is a provincial responsibility not a federal one. Since Canada is comprised of 10 provinces and 3 territories, the requirements can vary from one jurisdiction to the next. Also, it is noteworthy that in some provinces the regulation of auditors is carried out by the provincial accounting body who has been delegated this responsibility by the Provincial Government but in some other provinces, the Provincial Government has established a licensing board that oversees the regulation of public accounting.

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of British Columbia
Suite 500, One Bentall Centre
505 Burrard Street, Box 22
Vancouver, British Columbia V7X 1M4
Phone: (604) 681-3264
Toll-free: 1-800-663-2677
Fax: (604) 681-1523
Web site: www.ica.bc.ca

Institute of Chartered Accountants of Alberta
580 Manulife Place
10180-101 Street
Edmonton, Alberta T5J 4R2
Phone: (780) 424-7391 or 1-800-232-9406
Fax: (780) 425-8766
Email: info@icaa.ab.ca
Web site: http://www.albertacas.ca/

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Saskatchewan
3621 Pasqua Street
Regina, Saskatchewan S4S 6W8
Phone: (306) 359-1010
Fax: (306) 569-8288
Email: inst.ca@icas.sk.ca
Web site: www.icas.sk.ca

Institute of Chartered Accountants of Manitoba
500-161 Portage Avenue East
Winnipeg, Manitoba R3B 0Y4
Phone: (204) 942-8248
Toll-Free: 1-888-942-8248 (within Manitoba)
Fax: (204) 943-7119
Email: icam@icam.mb.ca
Web site: www.icam.mb.ca

Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario
69 Bloor Street East
Toronto, Ontario M4W 1B3
Phone: (416) 962-1841
Fax: (416) 962-8900
Toll-Free: 1-800-387-0735
Email: custserv@icao.on.ca
Web site: www.icao.on.ca

The Public Accountants Council for the Province of Ontario
1200 Bay Street
Suite 901
Toronto, Ontario
M5R 2A5
Phone:416.920.1444
Toll-Free:800.387.2154
Fax: 416.920.1917
e-mail: generalinquiries@pacont.org
Web site: www.pacont.org

Ordre des comptable agréés du Québec
680, rue Sherbrooke ouest, 18e étage
Montréal (Québec) H3A 2S3
Phone: (514) 288-3256
Toll-Free: 1-800 363-4688
Fax: (514) 843-8375
Email: info@ocaq.qc.ca
Web site: ocaq.qc.ca

The New Brunswick Institute of Chartered Accountants
55 Union Street, Suite 250
Mercantile Centre
Saint John, New Brunswick E2L 5B7
Phone: (506) 634-1589
Fax: (506) 634-1015
Web site: www.nbica.org

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nova Scotia
1791 Barrington Street, Suite 1410
Halifax, Nova Scotia B3J 3L1
Phone: (902) 425-3291
Fax: (902) 423-4505
Email: icans@icans.ns.ca
Web site: www.icans.ns.ca

Institute of Chartered Accountants of Prince Edward Island
P.O. Box 301
56 Water Street
Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island C1A 7K7
Phone: (902) 894-4290
Fax: (902) 423-4505
Email: amferris@icapei.com
Web site: www.icapei.com

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Newfoundland and Labrador
95 Bonaventure Ave., Suite 501
St. John's, NL A1B 2X5
Phone: (709) 753-7566
Fax: (709) 753-3609
Email: kharnum@icanl.ca
Web site: www.icanl.ca

Institute of Chartered Accountants of the Northwest Territories
Yellowknife Catholic Schools
P.O. Box 1830
Yellowknife, Northwest Territories X1A 2P4
Phone: (867) 766-7404
Fax: (867) 766-7401
Web site: www.icanwt.nt.ca

Institute of Chartered Accountants of the Yukon Territory
c/o Institute of Chartered Accountants of British Columbia
Suite 500, One Bentall Centre
505 Burrard Street, Box 22
Vancouver, BC V7X 1M4
Phone: (604) 681-3264
Fax: (604) 681-1523
Toll-Free in BC: 1-800-663-2677
Web site: http://www.icayk.ca/

In addition any firm in Canada that audits listed entities must register with, and be subject to inspection by, the audit oversight regulator, the Canadian Public Accountability Board. Listed entities are those who must file financial statements with the provincial securities commissions.

Licensing of Foreign Nationals

Each respective professional association sets its licensing requirements.

For CGA-Canada, a foreign accountant can obtain a license to provide accountancy services by meeting certain requirements. There are specific restrictions or requirements relating to education and experience (other than nationality or residency) that limit the ability of foreign nationals or residents to become fully licensed local accountants in this economy. The minimum level of education is a university degree in accounting which includes related subjects such as auditing, commercial law, company law and taxation.

Foreign nationals originating from accountancy bodies who have entered into a mutual recognition agreement with CGA-Canada may be admitted to membership by meeting local tax and law requirements assessed through an exam.

For CICA-Canada, a foreign national can only provide accountancy services if they obtain a Canadian professional accounting designation (CA, CMA or CGA).

Requirements for members of bodies which have an MRA are described below. For members of other bodies, qualification requirements for membership in the Canadian CA profession are:

Licensing requirements may vary from Province to Province.

In the Province of Quebec, members also must meet provincial government French-language proficiency requirements.

Limited Licence

A foreign accountant cannot obtain a limited licence to provide accountancy services in this economy.

Professional Accounting Bodies

There are three recognised professional accounting bodies in this economy:

Organisation 1:

Certified General Accountants Association (CGA)

Contact Name:

Carole Presseault

Address:

#100 – 4200 North Fraser Way

City/Town:

Burnaby

State:

BC

ZIP/ Postcode:

V5K5J7

Economy:

Canada

Email address:

cpresseault@cga.canada.org

Phone number:

(604) 669 3555

Website:

http://www.cga-canada.org/

Levels of membership:

 Not provided

Eligibility to other bodies in the APEC economies

ACCA
CPA Australia

Alliance & MOUs

 ACCA
CPA Australia

Organisation 2:

The Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CICA)

Contact Name:

Tim Forristal

Address:

277 Wellington Street

City/Town:

Toronto

State:

Ontario

ZIP/ Postcode:

M5V 3H2

Economy:

Canada

Email address:

tim.forristal@cica.ca

Phone number:

+1 416.204.3335

Website:

http://cica.ca

Levels of membership:

Full members - qualification requirements are:

  • have a four-year, 120-credit-hour baccalaureate degree equivalent to a Canadian university degree
  • complete the Professional Education Program (PEP)
  • pass the Uniform Evaluation (UFE)
  • meet the CAs practical experience requirements

Fellow members – an honour bestowed by the profession to members who have shown exemplary service to the public.

All membership categories are open to foreign accountants and have the same requirements as for local accountants.

Eligibility to other bodies in the APEC economies

MRAs signed with the following APEC bodies:

  • Institute of Chartered Accountants of Australia
  • Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Hong Kong
  • Instituto de Contadores Publicos of Mexico
  • New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants
  • Any State Boards of Accountancy in the United States of America
  • Japanese Institute of Certified Public Accountants

Alliance & MOUs

Other MRAs signed with non APEC bodies:

  • Institut des reviseurs d’entreprise de Belgique
  • Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales
  • Ordre des experts comptables de France
  • Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland
  • South African Institute of Chartered Accountants
  • Institute of Chartered Accountants of Zimbabwe

If a member of one of these bodies is a fully qualified member of one of these bodies (not by affiliation – i.e. not through reciprocity with another accounting body), and obtained that designation while not a resident of Canada, they can obtain the Canadian CA designation by passing an exam on Canadian tax, law and ethics and by meeting the Canadian experience requirements. This does not necessarily qualify them to practice public accounting. Different rules apply depending on the Canadian Province chosen.


Organisation 3:

Certified Management Accountants of Canada (CMA)

Address:

Suite 1400, Mississauga Executive Centre

Address 2:

One Robert Speck Parkway

City/Town:

Mississauga

State:

Ontario

ZIP/ Postcode:

L4Z 3M

Economy:

Canada

Email address:

jrumble@cma-canada.org

Phone number:

Fax number:

+1 905 949 3100

+1 905 949 0058

Website:

http://www.cma-canada.org

Levels of membership:

 Not specified

Eligibility to other bodies in the APEC economies

Not specified

Alliance & MOUs

Mutual Recognition Agreements (MRAs) that are negotiated between CMA Canada currently include CPA Australia, CIPFA UK, and CIMA UK. Internationally trained students or accountants who are not part of a formal Mutual Recognition Agreement may be eligible for advanced standing in one of the CMA BC accreditation programs. Under advanced standing processes, applicants are required to arrange for official transcripts to be sent to the International Credential Evaluation Service (ICES), and to order both Comprehensive and Supplemental ICES Reports. The advanced standing process involves a review of courses taken and credit may be given on a course by course basis - refer the Advanced Standing Guide for the required courses against which credit may be given. Courses may also be evaluated to determine prerequisites to the Accelerated Program. Please note that advanced standing does not remove the requirement to pass the CMA National Entrance Exam and to successfully complete the entire Strategic Leadership Program.

Mutual Recognition Agreement with: CPA Australia | CIPFA Members (UK) | CIMA Members (UK)

Professional Advanced Standing for:Members (US) | ACCA Members (UK) | ICMAP Members (Pakistan)

http://www.cmabc.com/index.cfm/ci_id/2541/la_id/1.htm

Temporary practice arrangements

A foreign accountant is not permitted to provide professional accountancy services on a temporary basis without a local license in this economy.

Rules on firms and commercial association

Generally these rules are: (may vary from Province to Province)

A member or licensed firm may advertise or seek publicity for the member’s or licensed firm's services, achievements or products and may seek to obtain new engagements and clients by various means, but shall not do so directly or indirectly, in any manner which:

A member or licensed firm shall engage in the practice of public accounting, or in the public practice of any function not inconsistent therewith, only under a name or style which

All provinces prevent, for public interest purposes, a person not licensed in a Canadian jurisdiction from using a professional designation that is the same as or close to that used by the CA, CGA and/or CMA associations.

At the same time, greater flexibility to this approach has been implemented in the key province of Ontario recently, where the Ontario's Accounting Professions Act, 2009 or Bill 158, which received Royal Assent on May 18th, 2010, relaxed some of the requirements for using legally official accounting designations by allowing a range of exceptions to these requirements. The act permits the use of foreign accounting designations, even if they are the same as, or similar to, the designations of the accounting bodies governed by that act, in private communications with prospective employers or clients, if it is made clear that the person using them is not a member of, or governed, by an Ontario body. Such foreign designations may also be used in responding to requests for proposals, and in giving speeches or appearing at conferences.

Other regulatory issues

In this economy there:

Membership information for the Chartered Accountants of British Columbia
Membership information for the Chartered Accountants of Alberta
Membership information for the Chartered Accountants of Saskatchewan
Membership information for the Chartered Accountants of Manitoba
Membership information for the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario
Membership information for the Ordre des comptables agréés du Québec
Membership information for the Institute of Chartered Accountants of New Brunswick
Membership information for the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nova Scotia
Membership information for the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Newfoundland and Labrador
Membership information for the Chartered Accountants of Yukon
Membership information for the Institute of Chartered Accountants of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut

Additional information relevant to the Accounting profession

Refer to the website of each individual professional body for additional information.

Contact Details

Refer to the website of each individual professional body for additional information.