Chartered Accountant (CA) Designation Revealed!

Online Accounting Community for Students

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Adopting the CPA in Ontario Webinar w/ Rodd Bar

I recently attended the Webinar with Robb Barr.  The Webinar can be accessed later on the ICAO website.
I am not advocating any opinion, and encourage you to do your due diligence.  This is just a summary. 

Here are is a summary of the webinar: 

Unification is happening.

CPA Quebec has already gone through CPA legislation and has already completed everything.

CPA Canada has been formed by CICA and CMA Canada and at the last two leadership meetings, there is substantial commitment from both parties.

It is the government who runs the accounting profession and will have to enact a merger under any circumstances.  Any vote cannot be binding as the final decision lies with the Government of Ontario.  

Alberta in the last 6-8 weeks which had dropped out 13 months ago, have asked to come back to effect a merger.

65% of accountants represented by councils across the country decided to go the CPA route.  17% of CGAS represented by 6 provinces don't want to go CPA.

83% of accountants say they are going that route.

The vision is to have:   

1 accounting designation
14 governing bodies
170,000+ members
Benefits of Adopting CPA

-ICAO has strong voice in CPA Canada and globally
-Serves public interest with strong national standards
-Interprovincial/international mobility assured
-Shared costs for education, branding, etc.
-Protect Rights to CPA

Risks of Inaction

-ICAO marginalized and without international voice
-ICAO standards differ from former CA partners/CPAs
-Interprovincial/international mobility not assured
-ICAO must pay for education, branding, etc.
-Possible loss of CPA rights

Ontario doesn't want to go alone in CA movement because they would have to do own advertising, cost extremely high,

ICAO adopted CA and is committed to Unification.

-Council approved issuing CPA desigantion to all members as of November 1, 2012; certificates distributed
- Use of the CPA designation with the CA: "CPA, CA" - will be voluntary until July 1, 2013, when it becomes mandatory
-Use of Chartered Professional Accountant in firm names now set for January 1, 2018

Big4 firms have been labeled as CPA firms in past 5 years in Globe and Mail.

CMA Ontario will return to discussions for unification.   CGA Ontario is still out

Question Period

We are at different stages of unification at different provinces and it is a mess.  There is at least a period of 3-4 years before unification takes place right across this country.

There is going to be confusion with US CPA and our current CPA designation.    It is an unfortunately matter.  That being said, there are many CPA's around the world who are not equivalent to US CPA.

Many members feel we are debasing the CA designation by going to the lowest denomination.

ICAO responds by saying they are not debasing the CA.  They are not reducing the standards of entry.  They are not reducing criteria of a regulatory regime or to practice public accounting.  Many people say that the new training regime is more robust.  Inherent in the change is the fact that they have to do a sound branding job to bring all the values of the old designation to the new designation.

Ontario government feels that merger is a good idea. 

All benefits of CA we are positioned to retain them. 

ICAO does not control the status quo.  They control what happens in Ontario.  Our accounting profession was being changed by the soverign actions.  Every CA body in this country with the Exception of alberta and ourselves who have no merger partner says we chose to go CPA

If we stay with the status quo, there is a limit to which we can grow.  We would compromise things that our members currently enjoy.   We are preserving as much of our status quo as possible and you get an extra designation.  

Assuming we do merge with someone, will the ICAO continue or the mergers create a new organization.  if the ICAO does go away, how long will it take.

If there is a merger, we are in the drivers seat, and CMA and CGA have to listen to us.  

We are not 100% sure of branding for CPA.  We anticipate logos and mission statements for time frame as of April 1st, we have all the stuff done for branding. 

New CPA Designation must be as rigorous as existing CA designation. 


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  6. We need a few more scandels. We need to train the CMAs who are fully in how to cover up. Issues such as Nortel, SeawayTrust to name a few.

    Only a Chartered Accountant is qualified to show the way to give a favorable audit that a client would want.

    We need to remain in the drivers seat for this important factor.

  7. Agreed.

    We need to remain in the drivers seat. CMAs are thread rate want to be CAs.

    They don't know how to audit or how to give a favorable audit which is important for the firm to get additional work.

  8. We need to ensure that if any one where to cook the books for a clients advantage it can only be a CA.

  9. Very professionally done.
    This merger should not take place. If it does occur we should be in the drivers seat. Those who didn't do the CA program should be forced to keep the CPA/A after the 10 year period when they don't need to use the CMA, or CGA designation.

    To the posters above with regards to cooking the books you have no idea what you are talking about.

    1. A few bad CAs don't mean all CAs are bad.

      The CAs are the gold standard.

      The CMA and CGA are the zinc standard.

    2. It will be so great we will all learn to cook the books from the CAs the gold standard in audit opinions that favor the client.

    3. Just vote NO if you don't think CMAs and CGA should be part of your club.

      Wait this vote is just an advisory it may have some legal weight if at least 50% vote no more so if 66% vote no. It's an advisory so that means your board will go ahead with the merger regardless of what you say.

      Here in Ontario I have already been issued a CPA number and we have yet to vote. Our vote is taking place in June.

      Finally we are your equal and you can't do anything about it without a court challenge. We all know the CA membership is too lazy to vote so why would they care for a court challenge.

  10. Vote NO if you don't agree.
    Actively post in Facebook and spread the word. Twitter as well. I don't see any twitter feeds against the merger. I assume this indicates everyone supports the merger.

    CMAs and CGAs are third rate accounting associations nay they are clerks. Vote against these joining our club.

  11. Only Ontario CAs are qualified to issue audit opinions that are in the clients best interest. Unqualified opinions are issued to obtaian more consulting work from the client.

    As such CAs must be in that drivers seat. We must not allow any CMAs or CGAs to learn our trade secrets.

    Nay we must vote no as including these two groups with increase the integrity and honesty of our institute. We must retain the right to remove any CMA or CGA member from this merger at any time.

  12. We must revoke the drivers License that is the right to practice audit in Ontario from CMAs and CGAs unless they write the UFE the gold standard. As well these two bodies should not even be allowed to practice internal audit without passing the UFE as well.

    These two bodies will destroy the accounting profession as we know it.

    1. I agree we should not allow CMAs or CGAs to join with us. They aren't up to par.

  13. These CMA and CGA idiots have no idea what they are talking about. The CA is the gold standard in Canada.

    At this time I don't think the CMAs or CGAs are ready to become part of our club. For this reason I am voting NO

    I would suggest you also vote NO as this will affect the standard of our association visavi those who joined our institute through the back door.


  14. I just found out CMAs across the country have actually been issued CPA member numbers. This merger is a fine deal even without a vote.

    The CAs have given the keys to the store to these wanttobe accountants. Giving out the CPA or the CA like candy is not fair to our members.

    Our leadership does not have its members interest in mind. For that reason I am voting NO. I urge you to do the same. Please tell your boomer and GenX CAs to vote NO. This is the future of our profession as we know it.

  15. The institute sold is out to a bunch of accountants who call themselves creative accountants.

    1. Here we go again with creative accounting at Nortel with the CMAs.

      What about the CGA clerks.

  16. Only CAs are trained to comit fraud. They will create complex schemes to avoid taxes.

    CAs cannot be in the drivers seat. Check the number of Canadian court cases where they failed to conduct a proper audit.

  17. Wow

    Did you see Rod Barf in his latest video about merging with the CMAs.
    With any merger CAs can't be in the drivers seat. They should be required to get their G1 again and take the SLP program, and write the case exam!

  18. The only way to get out of this is to actually setup our own designation post merger. We would need training requirements education etc. but this can be done.

    If done correctly we would actually be able to break off and have the CMAs and CGAs merged. The only thing is they will be cpa. Why is Mr. Barf join cpa Canada without a vote. Did you hear this jerk say that they could ignore the advisory vote ?

  19. It looks like CGA in Ontario is definitely not merging. They're looking to build a "closer relationship" with ACCA (British Chartered Certified Accountant) see link below:

    Does this mean that the accounting profession job market in Canada is now going to be flooded with ANOTHER designation (from overseas)?

    I also wanted to ass my 2 cents to the merger:

    CMAs have virtually no tax, no audit and very little advanced accounting topics in their program, and compared to CAs who take years of education to complete, you can do your CMA in a little less than 2 years with their "accelerated program" (complete b.s. if you ask me)the overall pass rate is extremely high.
    It doesn't make any sense to merge CA with CMA in Ontario now, as CMA is clearly a lower standard who is now going to piggy pack free ride off of the good name of the CAs (I actually believe this is their intended strategy) - for years CMAs have branded themselves as completely opposite of CAs; so called "managerial specialists" so why suddenly merge if your whole platform in the past was based on being speciality only in managerial accounting - doesn't make sense.

  20. *add my 2 cents lol (not ass)

  21. Part of the problem was CAs were too lazy to vote. Did you see the low turnout. As CAs didn't care enough we are giving out the gold standard to the CMAs like it was candy.

    But according to the mergers act of Ontario CAs maybe required to have 66 1/3 % of the vote in support slight off

    Ask your CA friends why they were too lazy to vote. Don't they care about the CA designation.

  22. How do you think that the U.S. adopting Clarity Standards will effect the Canadian exams? Do you think that Ontario and other provinces will follow suit?