TPB confirms PI insurance for tax and BAS agents in 2011
The Chair of the Tax Practitioners Board (TPB), Dale Boucher, today announced details of requirements for registered tax and BAS agents to have professional indemnity insurance coverage starting from 1 July 2011.
The TPB are aware that approximately 70 percent of BAS agents did not have PI insurance cover when they were first registered with the Board.
“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,” Mr Boucher said.
“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 most tax agents. Many agents who are already members of professional associations have this type of cover as standard practice. Where an agent has PI insurance cover, their clients will be 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.
In releasing its explanatory paper, Mr Boucher said the announcement of the Board's PI insurance approach is the result of nearly 12 months of 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.
In the New Year the Board will be contacting all agents, outlining their PI insurance cover obligations. Further details of the TPB's PI insurance approach can be found at www.tpb.gov.au