Canada's CAs helping boards of directors deal with corporate wrongdoing

    TORONTO, April 21 /CNW/ - Canada's Chartered Accountants have published a
new product to help boards take appropriate action when allegations of
corporate wrongdoing are made.
    The Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CICA) has prepared a
special document titled "20 Questions Directors Should Ask about Responding to
Allegations of Corporate Wrongdoing". The aim of the easy-to-read publication
is to equip boards of directors to deal with situations in which wrongdoing
has been alleged against the company or its employees, officers or directors.
The document was co-authored by Carol Hansell, a senior partner at Davies Ward
Phillips & Vineberg LLP, and Beth Deazeley, Principal, Risk Management and
Governance with the CICA.
    "Allegations of corporate wrongdoing can be devastating to a company,"
said Hansell. "The potential consequences include regulatory penalties,
criminal prosecution, class action lawsuits, loss of market share and damage
to the company's reputation." However, Hansell stressed that an appropriate
board response can not only resolve the problem but can preserve the company's
relationships with regulators, enhance stakeholder confidence and protect the
corporate reputation.
    The document, like others in the CICA's "20 Questions" series, provides
suggested questions for directors to ask and guidance to assess the answers
they receive. It is written to be of assistance to organizations and their
boards in both the private and public sectors along with not-for-profit
bodies. The document draws on a number of public examples of corporations
which have faced allegations of corporate wrongdoing, and dealt with them with
varying degrees of success.
    "The board of directors bears a significant responsibility to help
prevent cases of corporate wrongdoing," said Hansell. "In cases where
preventative efforts have failed and corporate wrongdoing is alleged, the
board has the important duty of assuring that the allegations are
appropriately addressed. This publication provides useful guidance for such
    The document can be found in the Risk Management and Governance section
of the Institute's website (

    The Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CICA), together with the
provincial, territorial and Bermuda Institutes/Ordre of Chartered Accountants,
represents a membership of approximately 74,000 CAs and 10,000 students in
Canada and Bermuda. The CICA conducts research into current business issues
and supports the setting of accounting, auditing and assurance standards for
business, not-for-profit organizations and government. It issues guidance on
control and governance, publishes professional literature, develops continuing
education programs and represents the CA profession nationally and
internationally. CICA is a founding member of the International Federation of
Accountants (IFAC) and the Global Accounting Alliance (GAA).

For further information:

For further information: or to arrange an interview, contact: Tobin
Lambie, Manager, Media, CICA, (416) 204-3228,

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