Under the terms of ACCA's global practising regulations, it is mandatory for members to hold an ACCA practising certificate in order to carry out work under ACCA's definition of public practice or to be partners or directors of a firm that undertakes public practice work. This is the case even if a practising certificate is held from another body.
ACCA has produced a factsheet entitled 'Do I need a practising certificate?' which outlines common areas where a practising certificate is required. This factsheet can be found in the related documents at the bottom of the page.
To obtain an ACCA practising certificate or a combined practising certificate and audit qualification for the first time, members must obtain a period of relevant experience.
This experience must be recorded in the Practising Certificate Training Record (PCTR) and be verified by an appropriately qualified individual (this requirement does not apply to members wishing to practise in Zimbabwe). For a practising certificate and audit qualification, members in the UK and Ireland must also have passed the UK or Irish variants of papers F4 Corporate and Business Law, F6 Taxation, P2 Corporate Reporting and P7 Advanced Audit and Assurance. In addition, members must fill out an Application for a practising certificate form available from the ACCA forms for practitioners page.
To obtain a globally portable practising certificate, members must meet ACCA's practical training requirements and complete a PCTR. Members who hold a licence to practise issued by a recognised local body or authority may apply but the certificate awarded will be valid only in the country where the local licence allows the member to practise.
A combined practising certificate and audit qualification is only available to members who, in addition to providing general accountancy services, wish to undertake audit work in the UK, Republic of Ireland, Cyprus and Zimbabwe where ACCA has specific legislative responsibilities to regulate members providing audit services.
The practising certificate also entitles members to transfer the validity of their practising certificate to other countries (subject to any local authorisation requirements also being met). The audit qualification is not generally transferable.