Your accounting engagement letter should not only outline your responsibilities but the responsibilities of your client. For example, you may need certain bookkeeping or financial records from the client by a set time of the month in order to complete your tasks on time. Or, you may state that your accounting firm does not include any procedures designed to discover fraud or theft and cannot be relied on to find those things, and that this is your client’s responsibility. Stating clear deadlines and tasks saves you trouble, and maybe even a customer, in the future. Another way to help implement engagement letters more efficiently is by using a standard terms-and-conditions addendum.
- If any dispute arises (between/among) the parties hereto, the parties agree first to try in good faith to settle the dispute through non-binding mediation.
- This is especially important if the engagement goes awry and you need to prove you had a valid contract in court.
- This one might seem obvious, but if you’re starting with a template, make sure you update the template to include both parties’ names and addresses.
- Especially where financials are concerned, you must execute an official confidentiality agreement.
This section of a sample bookkeeping engagement letter doesn’t usually need much tweaking. It’s a simple clause that limits the amount of money or damages that one party can sue for in case of breach of contract or non-performance. Define a provision in the letter for how the agreement can be terminated without repercussions. For example, you might say that a bookkeeper must give 30 days’ notice by email and train a replacement whom the client must hire within 15 days of notice being served. Then you must include how many days’ notice the client must provide to the bookkeeper before they find themselves without a job.
Geo-Specific Engagement Letter Templates
At Financial Cents, we understand the importance of a first impression, and we’re here to help. Our FREE bookkeeping engagement letter template will help you craft a professional accounting engagement letter that impresses your clients instead of confusing them. A bookkeeping engagement letter sets the tone and scope of the bookkeeping project. The letter should outline all services that are included in the scope of work.
- If I am not able to e-file your returns, you will be solely responsible to file the returns with the appropriate taxing authorities.
- Your responsibility for this engagement includes providing access to your accounting system and providing the documentation and information necessary to complete the quarterly compilation services and the annual review.
- While we stand behind our professional judgment and experience, our services are governed by the professional standards of the AICPA.
We’ve created a sample accounting engagement letter template below, which you can use as a starting point. An accounting engagement letter is a contract outlining the scope of work, billing rates, and any other relevant terms of the engagement. The contract should be agreed to by all parties prior to commencing work.
Names of each party and their role in the engagement
I will perform accounting services only as needed to prepare your tax returns. My work will not include procedures to find defalcations or other irregularities. Accordingly, how cost drivers affect variable costs our engagement should not be relied upon to disclose errors, fraud, or other illegal acts, though it may be necessary for you to clarify some of the information you submit.
SINCE THE BOOKKEEPING TSA SERVICES ARE BASED ON THE INFORMATION YOU PROVIDE, Collective does not warrant that the BOOKKEEPING TSA SERVICES will be timely, accurate, current or complete. Identify by name the party responsible for meeting each milestone and deadline. Make sure that you include contingencies for access to the needed information and whatever software tools and systems are required. Then add reasonable turnaround times for the work after the information is provided. The quarterly services will be completed by the last day of the month following the end of the quarter. Accountant Retainer Agreement – A full-service agreement outlining payment and any retainer paid by the client.
Can a bookkeeping engagement letter be used for both ongoing and one-time bookkeeping services?
The number of hours it will take to complete the return is not guaranteed but the hourly rate I charge is $[AMOUNT] / hour. However, if complications are discovered in the process of preparing your tax return, I may need to adjust the fee. Before proceeding with preparation of the return, I will generally contact you in advance if my original quote requires significant revision due to the amount of work involved. To the extent permitted by state law, an interest charge may be added to all accounts not paid within thirty (30) days. You will need the client’s full legal name, address, and contact information. You will also need to have a predetermined set of services you will provide as a bookkeeper for your client, how much you will charge for your services and when the payments will be due.
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I will correct your return for free and pay any penalties if I am at fault. An accountant / bookkeeping engagement letter outlines the scope of work that a professional will provide for a client and typically includes details about compensation and the project timeline. Engagement letters are used primarily for filing taxes or audit services for an individual or business entity.
What is a Bookkeeping Engagement Letter?
The engagement letter should include wording for who is responsible for these additional expenses. Include both parties’ names and addresses so that it can serve as an official employment agreement in lieu of an employment contract in case of any dispute. In the event of any future disagreements, both parties agree to resolve the issues through mediation. Any cost for mediation services will be split equally between both parties.
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Sources of sample engagement letters and sample terms and conditions include a CPA’s professional liability carrier, the AICPA (particularly the Tax Section), paid providers, and alliance networks. Leverage samples to help create engagement letter templates that are best for your firm, services, clients, and risk tolerance. Remember to have an attorney familiar with the laws in your jurisdiction review your templates for enforceability.