Some accountants can still remember a time in the distant past when it was possible to have the same client engagement letter in place for several years, without too much upset.

However, the pace of change in the various pieces of overlapping legislation (much of it of a whistleblowing nature) that impact on engagement letters, seems to be getting faster and faster.  Different obligations under criminal law, tax law, company law and anti-money laundering that are now required in the typical contract with your client, mean that there is a never ending requirement to review your letters and issue revised and updated letters to your clients on an annual basis.

Here is a quick checklist of the legislation you need to include in audit engagement letters:

Audit engagement letter under the Companies Act 2014

(correct at the time of going to press on 2 February 2024):



Company law
  • Companies Act 2014
Criminal law


  • ·‘Section 59 Criminal Justice (Theft and Fraud Offences) Acts, 2001 and 2021’
  • ‘Criminal Justice Act 2011’
Tax law
  • ‘Section 1079 Taxes Consolidation Act, 1997’
Anti-Money laundering/terrorist financing
  • ‘Criminal Justice (Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing) Acts, 2010 to 2021’
Data Protection
  • ‘Data Protections Acts 1988 to 2018 and the GDPR’


In future issues of this blog, we will cover the typical legislative references required in engagement letters for other entities including specialised ones like:

  • Solicitors (reporting under the new Solicitors Accounts Regulations 2023 of the Law Society);
  • Auctioneers
  • Owners management companies;
  • Charities;
  • Insurance intermediaries; and
  • Industrial & Provident Societies


Please also go to our website to see our latest:

  • Latest updated AML for Accountants webinar (December 2023) which explains the current legal AML reporting position for accountancy firms and includes a quiz. Upon completion, you receive a CPD Certificate of attendance in your inbox. A 20% discount is available for orders of five or more webinars/products, if bought together.
  • There are other accounting/audit webinars on the site and more will follow throughout 2024.
  • Anti-Money Laundering Policies Controls & Procedures Manual (March 2022) – View the Table of Contents click here.
  • letters of engagement and similar templates. Please visit our site here where immediate downloads are available in Word format. A bulk discount is available for orders of five or more items if bought together.
  • ISQM TOOLKIT – We can also tailor ISQM training and brainstorming sessions to suit your firm’s unique requirements. The ISQM TOOLKIT 2022 is available to purchase here.