Frequently asked questions

1. How can I become a member of the Institute of Certified Public Accountants (ICPAC)?

Persons wishing to enrol in the Register of Members must submit an application to the Council, accompanied by the necessary supporting documents and the amount set by the Council as a registration fee. The registration fee and the annual subscription must be settled with the submission of the application. The amount payable is: Registration fee €60 and the Annual Subscription amounting to €180.

The Council examines the application and decides whether to proceed with the enrolment of the applicant in the Register, within two months from the date of submission of the application, unless further particulars are requested for by the Council, in which case the period for the taking of the relevant decision making by the Council is extended for one more month after the date on which the particulars were received.

Provided the Council is satisfied that the person who applied for registration meets all the underlying requirements, then it proceeds with his registration assigning him a member’s registration number and issues to him the relevant Registration Certificate.

The application for registration of new members is available on ICPAC’s website www.icpac.org.cy

2. What are the qualifications required for becoming an ICPAC member?

Εvery person may enrol in the Register if he satisfies the Council that he meets any of the following conditions:

(a) He has attained university entrance or equivalent level, possesses the prescribed practical experience and has passed the prescribed examinations of professional competence.

(b) He is a member of at least one of the bodies of Professional Accountants referred to in the First Schedule of these Regulations.

(c) He is a member of at least one of the Bodies of Professional Accountants referred to in the Second Schedule of these Regulations or is a member of any other Body of Professional Accountants which is recognised as equivalent to the above Bodies, according to paragraph 6 of these Regulations.

(d) A person who does not meet the conditions of sub-paragraphs (1)(a)-(c) above may be registered if that person proves that:

(i) He has engaged for a period of fifteen years in professional activities which have enabled him to acquire sufficient experience in the fields of finance, law and accountancy and has passed the prescribed examinations of professional competence; or

(ii) He has engaged for a period of seven years in professional activities in the fields referred to in sub-paragraph (i) above, has undergone the prescribed practical experience and has passed the prescribed examinations of professional competence.

(e) A person who possesses the qualifications provided by section 155(1)(a) of the Companies Law, Cap 113, prior to entry into force of the Companies (Amendment) Law of 2001, No. 76(I)/2001, on 4 May 2001.

(f) A person to whom a licence has been granted by the Council of Ministers under section 155(1)(b) of the Companies Law, Cap.113, prior to the entry into force of the Companies (Amendment) Law of 2001, No. 76(I)/2001, on 4 May 2001.

(g) A person to whom a licence has been granted by the Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism under section 23 of the Companies (Amendment)(No.2) Law of 2003, No.167(I)/2003, i.e. up to 30 April 2004.

3. What are the obligations of ICPAC’s members?

Members of ICPAC must comply with the Institute’s Members Handbook and the IFAC Code of Ethics adopted by the Institute. Both the Members Handbook and the IFAC Code of Ethics are available on the website www.icpac.org.cy

4. How often should members renew their subscription?

Membership must be renewed on an annual basis, at the beginning of each year. A renewal notice is sent by the Institute. The annual membership fee is € 180.

5. What are the benefits from the ICPAC membership?

• Provision of an organizational framework for professional accountants

• Acquisition of practising certificates

• Training and development of members through seminars and presentations free at minimum cost and/for free of charge

• Provision of free technical support through associates such as ICAEW, ACCA and others on matters of Taxation, Accounting and Auditing Standards, Ethics etc.

• Updating on issues related to professional activities through technical circulars, newsletters, presentations and by other means

• Dispatch of ICPAC’s magazine Accountancy Cyprus free of charge

• Use of the updated website of the Institute

• Access to various activities and events organized for members

• Discounted pricing on services from third parties

• Operation of a Members Benevolent Fund

• General support of the interests of the profession and its members

6. How can I register as a student of the ACCA - ICPAC Joint Examination Scheme and what are my obligations?

ICPAC and ACCA concluded an agreement in 2004 creating a Joint Examination Scheme. According to the regulations of the Joint Examination Scheme, students who are permanent residents of Cyprus and sit their exams in Cyprus must enrol as students of ICPAC in the country of the Joint examination scheme. Those wishing to enrol as students, may do so by completing the registration form as a student of ACCA electronically through the official website of ACCA, www.accaglobal.com or complete and submit a form which they may obtain from educational organizations or office of ICPAC.

Provided the application is approved, and the student is registered, he pays an annual subscription to ICPAC of € 40 in the context of the joint examination scheme, in parallel with his subscription to ACCA. The subscription is renewed every year. In case the student does not renew his subscription either to ICPAC, or ACCA, then he is removed from the register of both professional bodies. Finally, if for any reason a student wishes to discontinue his studies and to continue at a later stage, then he is not required to pay the subscription during interruption of his studies. In order to continue however his studies he will need to re-register in both professional bodies by completing the appropriate documentation and paying the specified re-registration fee.

7. How often do ACCA - ICPAC Joint Scheme examinations take place?

The examinations for the students of the Joint Examination Scheme ACCA - ICPAC are organise in the same manner and at the same time, as the rest of the ACCA exams. i.e in June and December. More information concerning registration for the exams and for the exact dates and exam centres, are available on the official website of the ACCA, www.accaglobal.com

8. What are the legal obligations of ICPAC?

ICPAC is a competent authority for the professional activities of its members, according to the following laws:

• The Law providing for statutory audits of annual and consolidated accounts by statutory auditors and statutory audit firms (L.42(I)/2009 and L. 163(Ι)/2013)

• The Prevention and Suppression of Money Laundering Activities Law of 2007 as amended in 2010, 2012 and 2013

• The Law regulating companies providing administrative services and related matters (L.196(I)/2012 και L.109(Ι)/2013)

9. What types of practising certificates does ICPAC issue?

The Institute issues the following certificates:


To individuals

  • Practising certificate.
  • Practising certificate and audit qualification.
  • Certificate for the provision of administrative services.

To firms

  • Practising certificate.
  • Auditing certificate.
  • Certificate for the provision of administrative services.
10. What are the requirements for obtaining a Practising Certificate?

In order to obtain a practising certificate, a person must be a member of a recognised body of accountants for at least two years and satisfy the following conditions:

(a) Has completed three years of practical experience, working either as employee or sub-contractor under the supervision of a suitably experienced Member or any other person having in the opinion of the Council adequate qualifications.

(b) At least two years of the practical experience referred to in sub-paragraph (a) above, must have been completed after the individual’s admission to membership of a recognised body of accountants. It is clarified that the remaining period of experience may be completed before or after or partly before or partly after the individual’s admission to membership of a recognised body of accountants.

It is provided that, persons who had the qualifications for appointment as company auditors under the legislation in force prior to 4 May 2001 and the persons who obtained their professional qualification during the period from 4 May 2001 until 1 October 2001 will be exempt from this condition.

(c) Has passed the examinations F4 Cyprus Corporate and Business Law and F6 Cyprus Taxation, if he has not succeeded in any other examination, at the discretion of the Council, of an equivalent standard:

It is provided that, the clarifications and transitional provisions referred to in paragraph 5 of Regulation 1.104 “Examinations of professional competence” apply to this condition.

A person who has been enrolled in the Register of Members in accordance with paragraph 4(1)(e), (f) or (g) of Regulation 1.103 shall be regarded as satisfying the criteria of practical experience for the purpose of obtaining a practising certificate.

11. What are the requirements for the issue of the Practising Certificate and Audit Qualification?

The member concerned must apply to the Institute for a practising certificate and audit qualification. To obtain this certificate the individual must hold or satisfy the criteria for a practising certificate, and satisfy the following conditions:

(a) Has completed three years of practical experience, working either as employee or sub-contractor in an audit firm in Cyprus or in an office of a person to whom a practising certificate and audit qualification has been granted under the law of a European Union member state.

(b) At least two years of the practical experience, referred to in sub-paragraph (a) above, must have been completed after the individual’s admission to membership of a recognised body of accountants. It is clarified that the remaining period of experience may be completed before or after or partly before or partly after the individual’s admission to membership of a recognised body of accountants:

It is provided that, persons who had the qualifications for appointment as company auditors under the legislation in force prior to 4 May 2001 and the persons who obtained their professional qualification during the period from 4 May 2001 until 1 October 2001 will be exempt from this condition as well as from condition (c) below.

(c) At least one year out of the two years of practical experience, referred to in sub-paragraph (b) above, must be in audit work, of which at least six months must be in statutory audit of companies and the remaining six months in other audit work where the provisions of auditing standards are applied and an audit opinion is provided.

(d) Has passed the examinations F4 Cyprus Corporate and Business Law and F6 Cyprus Taxation, if he has not been successful in any other examination, which at the discretion of the Council is of an equivalent level:

It is provided that the clarifications and transitional provisions referred to in paragraph 5 of the Regulation 1.104 “Examinations of professional competence” will apply for this condition.

(e) Has passed the examination P7 Advanced Audit and Assurance of the Joint Examination Scheme ACCA/ICPAC, in the event that the specific paper was not opted for during the normal course of the studies.

It is provided that, persons who had the qualifications for appointment as company auditors under the legislation in force prior to 4 May 2001 and the persons who obtained their professional qualification during the period from 4 May 2001 until 1 October 2001 will be exempt from this condition as well as from condition (c) above.

A person who has been enrolled in the Register of Members in accordance with paragraph 4(1)(e), (f) or (g) of Regulation 1.103 shall be regarded as satisfying the criteria of practical experience for the purpose of obtaining a practising certificate and audit qualification.

Ιn exceptional circumstances, the requirements of this Regulation may be waived, varied or suspended by the Council at its absolute discretion. The Council may impose such alternative requirements as it thinks fit, which may include, without limitation, a requirement to succeed in any test of competence and/or examinations.

12. What are the requirements for obtaining a certificate for the provision of administrative services?

(1) In order to obtain a practicing certificate for the provision of administrative services, one must be a member of recognised professional body for at least two years, and satisfy the following conditions:

(a) Has completed three years of practical experience, working either as employee or sub-contractor under the supervision of a suitably experienced Member or any other person having in the opinion of the Council adequate qualifications.

(b) At least two years of the practical experience, referred to in sub-paragraph (a) above, must have been completed after the individual’s admission to membership of a recognised body of accountants. It is clarified that the remaining period of experience may be completed before or after or partly before and partly after the individual’s admission to membership of a recognised body of accountants.

It is provided that, persons who had the qualifications for appointment as company auditors under the legislation in force prior to 4 May 2001 and the persons who obtained their professional qualification during the period from 4 May 2001 until 1 October 2001 will be exempt from this condition.

(c) Has passed the examinations F4 Cyprus Corporate and Business Law and F6 Cyprus Taxation, if he has not been successful in any other examination, which at the discretion of the Council is of an equivalent level.

It is provided that the clarifications and transitional provisions referred to in paragraph 5 of the Regulation 1.104 “Examinations of professional competence” will apply for this condition.

2) A person who has been enrolled in the Register of Members in accordance with paragraph 4(1)(e), (f) or (g) of Regulation 1.103 shall be regarded as satisfying the criteria of practical experience for the purpose of obtaining a practising certificate.

13. What are the criteria for a firm to obtain a practising certificate and a certificate an auditing and administrative for the provision of services?

An accounting firm consisting of holders of practising certificates may describe itself as firm of “Certified Public Accountants” only where:

(a) at least 50% of the partners (or directors in the case of a company) are Members of the Institute who hold a practising certificate, and

(b) the partners and directors referred to in sub-paragraph (a) above control the majority of the voting rights under the firm’s partnership agreements or the company’s articles of association.

14. What are the criteria for a firm to obtain an auditing certificate?

(1) An audit firm (or even a sole practitioner) that holds, or intends to hold, audit appointments needs to obtain enrolment in a Register of a recognised body of accountants in accordance with the Auditors and Statutory Audits of Annual and Consolidated Accounts Law of 2009.

The Institute is the only body of accountants in Cyprus that has been recognised by the Council of Ministers. Therefore the Institute registers audit firms through the mechanism of a firm’s auditing certificate.

(2) In order for a firm to obtain an auditing certificate the following conditions must be satisfied:

(a) the natural persons who carry out statutory audits on behalf of the audit firm have obtained an

practising certificate in the Republic;

(b) the majority of the voting rights of the partners or of the shareholders of the audit firm, as the case may be, is held by audit firms to which approval to carry out statutory audits has been granted, or by statutory auditors, and

(c) seventy-five per cent (75%) of the general partners, in case of a partnership, or of the members of the board of directors, in case of a company, are statutory auditors:

Provided that, if the general partners, in case of a partnership, or the members of the board of directors, in case of a company, are not more than two, then one of them should be a statutory auditor.

(3) Sole practitioners

A Member who holds a practising certificate and audit qualification and who wishes to carry out audit work must, in addition, hold a firm’s auditing certificate. This applies even if the sole practitioner trades in his own name. Only firms (including any sole proprietor practising in his own name) holding a firm’s auditing certificate may describe themselves as “Registered Auditors” and have their details placed on the Register of Statutory Auditors in the Republic.

15. How often must licenses for practising certificates be renewed and what is the cost?

All practising certificates, are renewable every year. The annual fee for an individual’s practising certificate is €350 whereas the other two types of certificates are for the time being free of charge.

The cost of the Certificate for the provision of administrative services for firms is €750, whereas the other two types of certificates for firms are for the time being free of charge.

16. What are Aptitude Test exams, who must sit these exams and how often are they organised?

Any member wishing to obtain a practicing certificate, must succeed in aptitude tests in the subjects (a) Corporate and Business Law – F4 and (b) Taxation – F6 based on the Cyprus legislation. These exams are held twice a year (June and December).

The following, are exempt from taking the above exams:

- Those covered by the transitional arrangements that were set in 2001 through an amendment to the Companies Law, i.e all those who were members of ICPAC or were eligible to become members until 2/10/2001.

- Also exempt are those who succeed in the joint examination scheme ACCA-ICPAC up to and including the exams of December 2004 and those who will acquire the two years post qualification experience up to 30 June 2007.

- All those who in the contest of the Joint examination Scheme ACCA/ICPAC opt for the Cyprus variant papers on Taxation and Corporate Business Law.

- Graduates of the University of Cyprus who obtain from ACCA exemption from the papers F4 and F6 on the basis of certain criteria will be considered as satisfying the above aptitude test. The same will apply and to the members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales who are graduates of the University of Cyprus and could have obtained exemption from the said papers.

- Persons who have succeeded in test P6 Advanced Taxation of the United Kingdom legislation having the examination period of June and December 2004 will be exempt from the requirement to pass the Cyprus test F6 for practicing certificate purposes.

- The above transitional provisions do not apply to in the case of non-residents of Cyprus.

17. How can I join a committee of ICPAC?

The Committees and Specialized Work Groups are proclaimed by the Institute every two years. A circular is sent to members along with a form for participation in committees, where each member may mark the Committee or Committees that are of interest in order of preference. Once all applications are received, a subcommittee of the Council evaluates them and decides on the preliminary composition of the Committees and subsequently this is submitted to the Council for finalization and approval.

The term of office of the Committees and Specialized Work Groups is two years and their operation is subject to regulations adopted by the Council. Currently there are 20 Committees and 2 Specialized Work Groups.

18. What does Continuous Professional Development (CPD) mean?

ICPAC operates a Continuing Professional Development (CPD) programme since April 2007 which is based on ACCA’s programme “ACCA Realise”.

ICPAC’s CPD programme requires all members to undertake relevant CPD throughout their career in order to ensure the maintenance and further development of their knowledge and skills in relation to their professional activities.

To allow members to complete their CPD in a variety of ways, the programme has been designed to offer four different CPD routes:

• Unit route.

• Unit route for members who are working part-time or are semi-retired.

• Approved CPD Employer route.

• Other IFAC member body route.

ICPAC's approach to CPD aims to ensure that its members maintain high professional levels through updated and specialized knowledge skills and experience. The principal benefits of ICPAC’s CPD programme are this:

• helps members to identify areas of development which are relevant and support their career;

• reassures employers and the public that professional accountants are well trained, and apply the principles of the Code of Ethics.

• offers a measurable and transparent approach to CPD.

The CPD program complies fully with the International Education Standard 7 “Continuing Professional Development: Life Long Learning and Continuing Professional Development Program” that was published by the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) of which ICPAC is a member.

The CPD scheme requires members to complete 40 units of CPD per year, 21 of which must be verifiable.

Each member must submit his annual CPD declaration through a designated form.

19. How can I report a possible disciplinary offence?

Any member of ICPAC or any other Natural or legal person may submit a complaint to the Institute’s Council in writing.

20. What constitutes a disciplinary offence?

Every Member of the Institute or Student Accountant or Graduate Accountant is subject to disciplinary control in the following instances:

(a) If, in the course of carrying out his professional or other duties, has been found guilty of misconduct. For the purpose of this paragraph misconduct includes, but is not confined to, any act or omission which brings, or is likely to bring discredit, to himself or the accounting/auditing firm concerns or to the profession of accountant/auditor. The following shall be conclusive proof of misconduct:

(i) The fact that before a competent Court in Cyprus or elsewhere a Member or Student Accountant or Graduate Accountant pleaded guilty or was found guilty of any offence that discredits him or the accounting/auditing firm concerned or the Institute or the profession of accountant/auditor.

(ii) The fact that in a civil case before a competent Court in Cyprus or elsewhere, a Member or Student Accountant or Graduate Accountant has been found to have acted fraudulently or dishonestly.

(b) If, in connection with his professional duties he has conducted his work or has managed his accounting / auditing firm erroneously, inadequately or incompetently. In considering the allayed conduct (which may consist of one or more acts or omissions), are taken into account:

(i) Whether an act or omission, which in itself may not amount to misconduct, has taken place on more than one occasion, such that together the acts or omissions may amount to misconduct.

(ii) Whether the acts or omissions amount to or imply dishonesty on the part of the individual or the accounting / auditing firm concerned.

(iii) The nature, extent or degree of a breach of any code of practice, ethical or technical, adopted by the Council, and any regulation affecting Members, the accounting/auditing firms or the enrolled students set or approved by the Council.

(c) If he has violated the law or the Regulations or the Code of Ethics which refer to his professional status and his obligations which emanate from it, or has failed to comply with any directive issued under the law or the Regulations.

(d) If he has been disciplined by another professional body or pursuant to some other disciplinary process.

(e) If he has made an assignment for the benefit of creditors, or has made an arrangement with creditors accepting a sum of total debt in full settlement, or has had an interim order made by the court, or is a partner or director of an accounting/auditing firm which has made such an assignment or arrangement or has been wound up as an unregistered company, or entered into voluntary arrangement, administration or liquidation, in accordance with the Companies Law or other similar or analogous event has occurred in relation to him under applicable legislation.

(f) If he has failed to satisfy a judgment debt without reasonable excuse for a period of two months (and the fact that he did not have sufficient funds to discharge the debt shall not be a reasonable excuse for this purpose) whether or not the debt remains outstanding at the time of the bringing of the disciplinary proceedings take place.

21. What is the procedure for the investigation of a complaint?

Every complaint that is referred to the Council under any form and every case decided by the Council at its own initiative to be investigated is initially referred to a Prosecutor who examines it and:



(a) if he considers that the complaint is unfounded or outside the Committee’s competence, he prepares a report to the Council and recommends its rejection.



(b) if it considers that the complaint is prima facie valid, he prepares a report to the Council with a recommendation:



(i) to appoint an Investigator to carry out an investigation, and



(ii) to appoint the First Instance Panel of the Disciplinary Committee for the trial of the case, if a trial is considered necessary.



The above-mentioned report of the Prosecutor is submitted to the Council through the General Manager of the Institute who, depending on the case, recommends an Investigator or the members that will constitute the Panel of the Disciplinary Committee for approval by the Council.



22. How can I get updated on announcements/events of ICPAC?

ICPAC inform members and others about its activities through circulars and announcements, which are sent either via the website or via email or via post.

Also, the quarterly magazine of the Institute of Accountancy Cyprus publishes to upcoming activities.

23. What are the main activities of ICPAC in relation to its members?

The activities of ICPAC’s can be divided into two main categories:

a) Educational activities which include the organization of seminars, presentations and conferences, aimed at continuing education and updating of members, and

b) Social activities which include dinners, dances, sporting events, presentations, cultural events, etc., and aim at the public viewing of the Institute and the strengthening of relations between its members.