How to open an accounting office? Registration and formalities: The deregulation of the regulations in 2014 led to the fact that many professions were released from the obligation to certify and present a passed state examination. Thanks to this, since that year, an accounting office run by an accountant is no longer a business that requires so much preparation to be established.
Currently, each person can submit an application to the Central Register and Information on Economic Activity (CEIDG) and then start physically working with their accounting office. It is an economic activity in the same sense as most service providers, however there are some exceptions to this that you should be aware of.
You have to take into account that the accounting office must be a physical object that can be regularly inspected ex officio. While many services can be run with only a laptop with you and Internet access, in the case of an accounting office we deal with a huge amount of documentation, the originals of which we must have printed and ready to be presented at any time.
There are few companies whose insurance is top-down regulated. One of them is the accounting office, which has to extend the insurance policy taken out annually. This policy is intended to cover any claims that could be brought by a client who would go to court with an accounting office. This is due to the simple reason that in the event of the real fault of the accountant, the client’s business is at risk, and not the service provider, so it cannot be a matter of choosing the wrong accounting offices, as long as the good ones are found.
The minimum cost of an insurance policy is EUR 10,000 and it is dictated from above, so you cannot try to use the services of other insurance companies that would lower this amount. The accounting office must be ready to pay any damages at any time, which confirms the great responsibility of such a company.
Most businesses require specialized equipment that will allow them to produce goods or provide services. In the case of a small-scale accounting office, it is theoretically possible to limit yourself to having the Microsoft office suite. However, such a solution is unpopular, because Excel programs do not have many functions that significantly speed up the work in an accounting office.
The most popular solutions include packages such as: Rachmistrz, Rewizor GT or Optima. These are programs designed specifically for the needs of accounting offices and allow for a significant shortening of calculations, automation of some processes and standardization of settlement methods between individual companies.
An extremely useful, and in most cases even necessary, solution is having an electronic signature. The fee for the electronic signature is from one hundred to two hundred zlotys a year, depending on the company that offers its service to the accounting office. Such companies must be certified by the state.
Thanks to the electronic signature, the accounting office can submit documents to the office on behalf of its client or officially represent him in other activities. This requires a verified signed profile, thanks to which a large part of the correspondence and documentation can be transferred to the network.
When running an accounting office, remember that documentation and archiving differ from each other. In the first case, we mean the act of collecting official documents, originals, invoices, monthly receipts and the like. These are documents that must have a real, physical form and be available in the accounting office for inspection ex officio.
Clients always want to have access to documentation about their company, its revenues and expenses, therefore they also have the right to access the documentation. However, clients do not care about having access to the originals, as it is only a formality and it is in their best interest to have the information value of the documents. Therefore, the accounting office also conducts archiving, i.e. saving data in copies that are made available to customers. The method of sharing, of course, depends on the contract between the accounting office and the customer, but typically cloud storage and PDF transfer of documentation are used.
It is extremely important to plan the storage of documentation and archives at the very beginning of the accounting office’s operation. If we want no new problems to arise over time, and work with documents to be easy and proceed as expected, we need to define in advance the method of collecting and segregating archives.
Another issue is that many accounting offices offer archiving as a separate service. Contracts often specify who has the legal obligation to submit documentation for inspection. A separate service is sending by courier or otherwise sending copies of documents for inspection by the company. For large companies, it is not a problem to pay for this one additional service in exchange for significantly accelerating the insight needed for financial analysis.