It also sets out our five fundamental principles of:

  • integrity - being straightforward and honest in all professional and business relationships;
  • objectivity - not allowing bias, conflicts of interest or undue influence of others to override professional or business judgements;
  • professional competence and due care - to maintain professional knowledge and skill at a level required to ensure that a client or employer receives competent professional service based on current developments in practice, legislation and techniques and act diligently and in accordance with applicable technical and professional standards;
  • confidentiality – to respect the confidentiality of information acquired as a result of professional and business relationships and, therefore, not disclose any such information to third parties without proper and specific authority, unless there’s a legal or professional right or duty to disclose, nor use the information for the personal advantage of the professional accountant or third parties; and
  • professional behaviour – to comply with relevant laws and regulations and avoid any action that discredits the profession.

If you’re ‘up against the wall’, you might feel pressured into breaking one of these fundamental principles. That’s why it’s so important that you recognise any threats to our fundamental principles early on. Using the 'conceptual framework', Section 100 in part three of the ACCA Rulebook will help you to identify the situations that need to be managed.