Conduct Committees

The IFA has a number of independent Conduct Committees to deal with the disciplinary process as set out in the disciplinary regulations.  IFA Committeeflowchart Webfriendly 160421 FINAL

Investigations Committee

The purpose of the Investigations Committee is to investigate alleged liability to disciplinary action by the member, student, affiliate or member firm or contracted firm. The committee has the power to order unlimited fine and or costs.

The Investigations Committee consists of a lay person chair, an additional lay person and a member of the Institute or another professional accountant.

Members are not permitted to attend the Investigations Committee meetings as the matters are considered on the papers alone.

Regulatory Committee

The IFA has established a separate conduct committee to consider regulatory breaches which do not involve a third party such as a client, employer or regulatory authority. Example of regulatory breaches that are considered by this Committee include failure to submit annual membership, affiliate or firm returns, failure to hold a current IFA practising certificate and Money Laundering Regulations breaches. The Regulatory Committee has the same powers as the Investigations Committee and can order unlimited costs and or fines.

The Regulatory Committee consists of a lay person chair, an additional lay person and a member of the Institute or another professional accountant.

Disciplinary Committee

The Disciplinary Committee considers those matters referred to it by the Investigations or Regulatory Committee.

Disciplinary committee hearings are open to the public. As a complainant, you will be invited to attend the hearing if your complaint is referred to the IFA’s disciplinary committee or you may be required to attend as a witness.

Members requested to attend an IFA disciplinary committee hearing are encouraged to attend the hearing and be familiar with the IFA's disciplinary regulations.

Members of the press or public who attend a hearing are entitled to hear what is said but they are not entitled to see written material provided to the Committee.

The hearing will be open to any member of the public who wishes to attend although the committee, once convened, may decide to hold all or part of the hearing in private.

The hearing is open to members of the public. Any member of the public wishing to attend the hearing should contact [email protected] at least two working days before the hearing.

The Disciplinary Committee consists of a lay person chair, an additional lay person and a member of the Institute or another professional accountant.

A legal assessor shall be present at a hearing of the Disciplinary Committee.

The Disciplinary Committee can impose sanctions such as caution, reprimand or severe reprimand; it can impose conditions such as withdrawal of practising certificate; it can expel members and it can impose unlimited fines and costs.

Appeal Committee

The Appeal Committee hears appeals against the decisions of the Disciplinary Committee.

The Appeal Committee consists of a lay person chair, an additional lay person and a member of the Institute or another professional accountant.

A legal assessor shall be present at a hearing of the Appeal Committee.

The Appeal Committee can uphold, vary or rescind the Disciplinary Committee’s decision, it can also award costs. 

Sanctions Guidance

The Institute of Financial Accountants Sanctions Guidance is to be referred to by a Conduct Committee when considering what order to make (or offer) where the Committee has made a finding against a member, student, affiliate, member firm or contracted firm. The purpose of the guidance is to enhance consistency and transparency regarding the outcomes of the IFA’s regulatory and disciplinary procedures.

Sanctions guidance effective from 1 July 2022.

Additional resources

IFA Bye-Laws and Regulations