Accounting Contract Template

We’ve worked with legal advisors and proofreaders to create an accounting contract template to help protect your practice while also growing your client list.

Free Accounting Contract Template for Download

We’ve worked with legal advisors and proofreaders to create an accounting contract template to help protect your practice while also growing your client list.
What’s in this template?
  • • List of services
  • • Contract length
  • • Confidentiality terms
Click below to download our accounting contract sample

What is an accounting contract?

Accountants are highly qualified professionals who help individuals and businesses meet their tax obligations, improve financial processes, and offer advice.
Being an accountant comes with a massive responsibility as clients across all industries depend on their expertise to improve their financial situation and remain compliant with government authorities.
An accounting contract is a formal agreement between accountants and clients detailing the terms and conditions of the nature of work that is to be completed.

Get access to our Accounting
Contract Template Sample

We’ve created a simple template to save you time and money when it comes to managing client relationships.
Our document is entirely free and editable to suit your needs.
Click here to grab a copy of our accounting agreement sample

Why an accounting contract agreement is important for accountants

Accounting requires incredible attention to detail, access to client records, and acute knowledge of taxation law. If accounting services are mismanaged or inaccurate, it could cost clients thousands, sometimes hundreds of thousands of dollars to fix.
Furthermore, as accountants are seen as trusted advisors with granted access to sensitive financial information, accountants could breach business conduct and privacy, which could have a devastating impact on all parties.

An accounting agreement offers protection for clients and accountants when it comes to financial compliance and advice. A formal contract aims to hold all parties accountable to maintain accurate and up to date financial records.

Best practices when using an accounting contract

We’ve designed an accounting agreement template that’s straightforward to use for any practitioner. However, we’ve identified three best practices to get the most out of your contract with interacting with clients.

1. Be specific with your offerings

Balance sheets and profit and loss statements are based on universal accounting principles. But while the foundations are the same, each client presents a unique set of requirements depending on their situation.
So even before you can present your offerings on a contract, you need to conduct a client assessment to understand what services are necessary to help your clients reach their goals.
See if you can access client spreadsheets, accounting systems, or paper records to get an idea of how much work is involved.
In addition to an assessment, interview your client to understand their workflows and objectives. Below are some questions to help get you to get started:
  • • Are you the sole owner of your investment property?
  • • Does your business have payroll?
  • • What type of business entity do you have?
  • • Have you worked with an accountant before? If so, what was the experience like?
  • • Are your taxes up to date?
  • • How does your business make money?
  • • Have you sold any investments in the last year?
  • • Do you use accounting software? If so, what do you use?
Once you’ve interviewed your client and assessed their books, you’re in a position to list all of your relevant services in your accounting contract template.

2. Determine the length of your accounting contract

The main objective of your accounting business is to secure ongoing client work, enabling you to grow and scale your practice.
However, with new client engagements, it may take some time to build trust and loyalty. For this reason, it’s a good idea to include an end date in your accounting services contract. Work with your client to select a time that makes sense, for instance, after a tax office cut-off date, or after an auditing period.
With an end date, you and your clients know you have a set period to see if the relationship is going to work. This is sensible as it gives parties an out if things don’t go as planned.
Alternatively, if everyone is happy with the work leading up to the end date, you can consider presenting an agreement with ongoing work.

3. Set expectation for how you want to receive payments

Like any service provider, an accountant can choose to charge a fixed rate or by the hour. As accounting needs change depending on the type of work that needs to be done, we suggest you start by charging an hourly rate.
Hourly rates are standard in the accounting industry, as many firms use time tracking for all advisors to bill clients accurately.
The simplest way to charge clients is to provide an invoice at the end of each month with the hours your firm worked.
We also recommend you charge a penalty for late-payments and add it to your contract terms. That way, you reduce late payments and improve your cash flow.

Get access to our Accounting
Contract Template Forms

We’ve created a simple template to save you time and money when it comes to managing client relationships.
Our document is entirely free and editable to suit your needs.
Click here to grab a copy of our accounting agreement sample
Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ about Accounting Contracts

An accounting agreement letter, also known as an engagement letter, is effectively a shortened and abbreviated contract summarising accounting services and compensation.
Using an accounting engagement letter is common practice in the industry when liaising with new clients.
An accounting contract conversely, is a formal agreement that requires a signature from both the accountant and client.
Accountants use a combination of a letter and a contract depending on what they’re used to doing.
We recommend you use both when engaging with new clients, as the letter is a simple document to interpret while the contract provides legal proof of the commitments each party has made.
We all want every client project to run smoothly. However, it’s not always the case. Sometimes you get an unreasonable client or, even worse, a lawsuit.
A contract protects you against those situations and gives you a reference document to be accountable to.
So while it’s not a requirement to have an accounting contract, it’s a good idea to have one.
We acknowledge that you may need to adjust your accounting contract depending on the needs of your clients. That’s why we’ve made our template available in Word so you can make changes as needed.
However, if you intend to make significant modifications, we advise you to consult with a lawyer for compliance.
document preview

Accounting Contract

Accounting Contract

Parties

– This Accounting Agreement (hereinafter referred to as the “Agreement”) is entered into on ______________ (the “Effective Date”), by and between __________________________, with an address of ______________ (hereinafter referred to as the “Accountant”) and ______________ with an address of ______________ (hereinafter referred to as the “Client”) (collectively referred to as the “Parties”).

Accounting Services

Hereafter, the accounting services that the Client requests from the Accountant and the ones that the Accountant agrees to perform are enlisted below:
  1. _______________________________________
  2. _______________________________________
  3. _______________________________________
  4. _______________________________________
  5. _______________________________________
  6. _______________________________________
  7. _______________________________________
  8. _______________________________________
  9. _______________________________________
  10. _______________________________________

Term

– This Agreement shall be effective on the date of signing this Agreement (hereinafter referred to as the “Effective Date”) and will end on ______________.
– Upon the end of the term of the Agreement, this Agreement will not be automatically renewed for a new term.

Compensation

– Hereby, the Parties agree that the Accountant will be paid by invoicing the Client per month for the services he/she provides to the Client.
– The services performed by the Accountant cost ______________ per hour.
– The Parties agree that in case the invoices are not paid within thirty days upon receiving them, the Accountant will be entitled to charge a late fee of ______________.

Work Ownership

– The Parties agree that the work created by the Accountant for the Client, including but not limited to, reports, documents and presentations (electronic/ physical) during the term of this Agreement will be solely owned by the Client.
– Hereby, the Accountant agrees that he/she has no rights over this work and will turn or destroy the work product upon the conclusion of this Agreement as per the instructions of the Client.

Relationship Between Parties

– Hereby, the Parties agree that the Accountant in this Agreement is an independent contractor, and the Accountant will provide the services hereunder and will act as an independent contractor.
– Under no circumstances shall the Accountant be considered an employee.
– Whereas, this Agreement does not create any other partnership between the Parties.

Confidentiality

– All terms and conditions of this Agreement and any materials provided during the term of the Agreement must be kept confidential by the Accountant, unless the disclosure is required pursuant to process of law.
– The Accountant will not be entitled to use any information provided to him/her even after the conclusion of the Agreement for a period of ______________ years.
– Disclosing or using this information for any purpose beyond the scope of this Agreement, or beyond the exceptions set forth above, is expressly forbidden without the prior consent of the Client.
– This section will remain in force regardless of the fact in case the Agreement is terminated.

Audit

– Hereby, the Accountant agrees that he/she will maintain full records of all the business conducted that is relevant to the services in this Agreement and the Agreement itself.
– The records in the possession of the Accountant will be available for full inspection and audit by the Client and governmental entities for the period as per the requirement by law.

Representation And Warranties

– Hereby, the Parties declare that they both are authorized to enter into this Agreement fully, whereas the Accountant is to perform the accounting services in accordance with the ethics standards set forth by the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants.
– All analysis, records, reports, and filings will be performed in compliance with the law.

Limitation Of Liability

– Under no circumstances will either party be liable for any indirect, special, consequential, or punitive damages (including lost profits) arising out of or relating to this Agreement or the transactions it contemplates (whether for breach of contract, tort, negligence, or other form of action) in case such is not related to the direct result of one of the party’s negligence or breach.

Termination

– This Agreement may be terminated in case the following occurs:
  1. Immediately in case one of the Parties breaches this Agreement.
  2. At any given time by providing a written notice to the other party ______________ days prior to terminating the Agreement.
– Upon termination, the Accountant is required to return all Client content, materials, and all Work Product to the Client at his/her earliest convenience, but in no event beyond thirty (30) days after the date of termination.

Dispute Resolution

– Any dispute or difference whatsoever arising out of or in connection with this Agreement shall be submitted to ______________ (Arbitration/mediation/negotiation) in accordance with, and subject to the laws of ______________.

Governing Law

– This Agreement shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of ______________.

Severability

– In an event where any provision of this Agreement is found to be void and unenforceable by a court of competent jurisdiction, then the remaining provisions will remain to be enforced in accordance with the Parties’ intention.

Entire Agreement

– This Agreement contains the entire Agreement and understanding among the Parties hereto with respect to the subject matter hereof, and supersedes all prior agreements, understandings, inducements and conditions, express or implied, oral or written, of any nature whatsoever with respect to the subject matter hereof. The express terms hereof control and supersede any course of performance and/or usage of the trade inconsistent with any of the terms hereof.

Amendments

– The Parties agree that any amendments made to this Agreement must be in writing where they must be signed by both Parties to this Agreement.
– As such, any amendments made by the Parties will be applied to this Agreement.

Signature And Date

– The Parties hereby agree to the terms and conditions set forth in this Agreement and such is demonstrated throughout by their signatures below:
Client
Name: ______________________
Signature: ___________________
Date: _______________________
Accountant
Name: ______________________
Signature: ___________________
Date: _______________________

Get access to our Accounting
Contract Template

We’ve created a simple template to save you time and money when it comes to managing client relationships.
Our document is entirely free and editable to suit your needs.
Click here to grab a copy of our accounting agreement sample
Download Accounting Contract Doc
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