SRA Accounts Rules - Post Covid 
Expires after 90 days
Trevor Hellawell MA (Cantab)
CPD Hours: 1
Since the SRA’s introduction of the first major update to the Accounts Rules for over 20 years, along with Resources supplementing them further to ease understanding, we have all been in lockdown. Our initial enthusiasm has had to be reined in and ‘normal’ procedures up-ended as part of our reaction to the pandemic. But, the rules have not gone away and as the Covid pandemonium is appearing to relax slightly, we need to readjust our thinking to the new regime in front of us. The new rules are simpler but equally significant, and anyone in the law firm with responsibility for finance or accounts needs to understand them thoroughly.
- Setting the scene - a brief history of the Accounts Rules and an update on the SRA Risk Outlook
- Key definitions in the SRA Account Rules 2019 – what is client money, exactly?
- The key rules including:
- Rule 1: General Rules
- Rules 2 – 8: Main operative provisions
- Rule 9 – 10: Clients’ own accounts
- Rule 11: TPMAs
- Rules 12-13: accounting systems and records
- What relaxations can we take advantage of?
- Rules that are most frequently breached: provision of banking facilities, residual balances and interest
- What is a non-material and material breach?
- Recording and reporting of breaches to the COFA & SRA
- Other key duties on the COFA
- Relationship with the Reporting Accountant
- SRA Resources and checklists
- What does ‘promptly’ mean?
- What of VAT & Brabners?
Key points to take away
- New relaxations of old duties and rigidities
- New checklists for consideration – how good are you?
- How do we deal with expenses and disbursements?
- Regulation for grown-ups – the one KEY rule