Competition law clarity for accountants and clients

By Michael McGlinchey

2 September 2015

The Competition and Markets Authority's new 60-Second Summary helps accountants to advise clients on legal do's and don'ts.

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has published information to help accountants inform their clients about competition law.

The CMA worked with ICAS and the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)   to create a 60-Second Summary which includes an introduction to competition law.

Judith Frame, CMA Head of Compliance, said: "Research shows that many businesses, particularly smaller ones, could benefit from having a stronger understanding of how competition law affects them. So, we are delighted to have worked in partnership with representatives of the accountancy profession to develop this 60-Second Summary.  

"It explains the importance of competition in creating a level playing field for businesses and outlines where accountants can find more information on anti-competitive behaviours.

"We hope this will help accountants put competition law on their clients' radars to help them avoid risks, and to benefit from competition."

Ken McManus, Head of Practice Support and International Services at ICAS, said: "Accountants are trusted advisers and as such are ideally placed to put competition law on the radar of business clients.

"Many businesses might be breaking the law without knowing it, with serious consequences.

"We've worked in partnership with the CMA to produce this quick guide and would encourage all accountants to make business clients aware of their duty to comply with competition law."

The summary highlights research which shows that 77 per cent of businesses do not understand competition law well and outlines the potential penalties for breaking the law which can include fines of up to 10 per cent of global turnover for businesses and a maximum five-year jail term for individuals involved in cartels. Directors can also be disqualified for up to 15 years.

More information is available on the website.


  • CA Practitioner Service (CAPS)
  • Development of the profession

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