Penalties and Adjudication of Audit Disputes Procedure

A. Penalties for Non-compliance

Section 9.2 of the ACMO 2000 Manual requires the Council to " develop schedule of penalties for non-compliance to the standards." Non-compliance would typically arise from a complaint which was determined to be valid. It could also occur if the certified firm was unable to pass an "ongoing compliance" audit. The series of penalties are related to the seriousness of the non-compliance.

Penalty Schedule

1. Upon a finding of non-compliance with the ACMO 2000 standards the Council will direct the member to comply with the standards and if non-compliance continues, the Council may do one or more of the following:

  • (i) direct the member to be under probation for up to 2 years;
  • (ii) suspend the member's certification until proof of compliance;
  • (iii) revoke the member's certification and publicize the revocation;
  • (iv) recommend to ACMO such further action as is deemed appropriate.

2. There shall be no appeal of a Council decision on penalties.

3. The full details of the penalties assessed will be documented in the Council's Annual Report.

B. Adjudication of Audit Disputes

Section 9.2 of the ACMO 2000 Manual requires the Council to "provide adjudication on ACMO 2000 audit disputes." An audit dispute would arise if a firm does not agree with the auditor's report (or portion thereof) on an initial or on-going audit.

Procedure

The Council will adjudicate a dispute between a member and the auditor as follows:

1. Receipt of the adjudication request must be in writing to the Vice Chair of the Council. The Council will acknowledge receipt of the request within 15 days.

2. The adjudication request must be from the senior officer of the complainant.

3. The adjudication request must specify the nature of the audit dispute and be accompanied by documentary proof of the allegation. The adjudication request must demonstrate that the member has attempted to resolve the dispute with the auditor.

4. On receipt of the adjudication request the Vice Chair, with administration assistance, will assess whether the dispute falls within the ACMO 2000 Program.

5. If outside the ACMO 2000 Program, the adjudication request will be referred to ACMO and the complainant informed of this outcome. ACMO will inform the Vice Chair of the final resolution of the adjudication request.

6. If within the ACMO 2000 program:

(i) the auditor will be asked to respond in writing to the dispute by 5 working days,
(ii) the certified company may be asked to respond to questions required to complete the record by 5 working days;
(iii) the Vice Chair may seek a resolution of the issue;
(iv) if the dispute remains unresolved, the Vice Chair will assign the adjudication request to a subcommittee of three Council members for review;
(v) based on the written record, the subcommittee may ask for a meeting with the two parties to receive further clarification;
(vi) the subcommittee will make a recommendation to the full Council on a resolution of the adjudication request;
(vii) the Vice Chair will inform the parties of the decision.

7. There will be no appeal of a Council's decision but the parties may have full recourse to the courts for further remedy.
8. The abridged details of the adjudication request and the resolution will be documented in the Council's Annual Report