Monday, October 31, 2011

Wearing a CPA Costume?

It’s Halloween, when children (and some adults) dress up in costumes and celebrate. Whether you’re taking your kids trick-or-treating or going to a party, you can be glad you’re not one of these men who ran afoul of the law by impersonating a CPA.

Two notable cases came from California: Daniel Ford, who opened a tax preparation business without the proper education and then defrauded investors, and Nick Holquin, Jr., who also defrauded investors and added some tax fraud of his own to his impersonation. A more recent case from Washington state saw William G. Ballentine impersonating a CPA to defraud a church.

Fortunately for the public and for legitimate CPAs, resources are available to double-check CPA claims. The National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) recently launched, a site that allows citizens to verify a CPA’s status. And CPAs can get a refresher course on the regulations regarding the use of the CPA title in Virginia.

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