Do I need a practising certificate?
Check the eligibility requirements below to decide whether you need to apply for a practising certificate or a combined practising certificate and audit qualification.
We're sorry for the recent delays to the assessment and processing of practising certificate applications, which had increased allocation times for initial assessments. We are pleased to advise that current allocation times have been reduced to around ten weeks and are working hard to reduce that further.
We're currently prioritising applications from those members who are now considering entering into practice for the first time as a result if the financial impact of the pandemic.
When you submit your practising certificate application please remember to:
- Check your submitted documents are accurate and complete
- Make sure your PCEF meets the requirements set out in the guidance and videos here
- Use your registered e-mail address
- Make sure you read the top 10 PCEF tips here
You need to apply for an ACCA practising certificate if:
- you're thinking of setting up a practice (download Am I in public practice? PDF, 97kb)
- you're joining a firm as a principal, eg partner or director
- you work in the UK, Ireland, Zimbabwe, Australia or there is a local requirement for you to hold an ACCA practising certificate.
You do not need to apply for a practising certificate if you are engaged in public practice outside of the above territories or in a territory where there is no local requirement for you to hold an ACCA practising certificate but you must notify ACCA and apply to be placed on ACCA’s register of practitioners.
In addition, if you undertake work in the UK and/or Ireland on a self-employed basis that falls outside of ACCA's definition of public practice (eg bookkeeping) you may wish to apply for an ACCA practising certificate in order to be supervised by ACCA under the Money Laundering Regulations (simply being a member of ACCA does not mean you are automatically supervised by ACCA under the Money Laundering Regulations). Further guidance is available here.
You need to apply for an ACCA practising certificate and audit qualification if, in addition to a practising certificate:
- you will be responsible for signing audit reports in the UK and/or Ireland
- you would like statutory auditor status in the UK and/or Ireland
Important information: Practising without a certificate and failing to register for supervision.
Practising certificate webinars
Access our webinar series covering issues to consider if you would like to obtain a practising certificate or practising certificate and audit qualification from ACCA.