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EU directive on the Recognition of Professional Qualifications (RPQ)

If you are a member of a professional accountancy body within the EU and do not wish to provide audit services in the UK, you may be eligible to become an ICAEW member under the Recognition of Professional Qualifications (RPQ) Directive. You will have to sit an aptitude test to gain ICAEW membership.

The RPQ Directive applies to migrant accountants from the EU. If you are a migrant auditor from the EU and would like to gain UK audit rights, you will need to apply for recognition under the Statutory Audit Directive (SAD)

Am I eligible?

If you answer yes to all of the questions below, then you are eligible to apply:

  • I am a member of a professional accountancy body within the EU
  • I have qualified with this body via the normal training and education route
  • My qualification is listed on the EU Commissions database of recognised qualifications
  • My qualification is listed as level C, D or E - (This will be shown in brackets when you locate your qualification i.e. in Germany a Wirtschaftsprüfer is listed as “Article 11 (d) primary application of General System” indicating that the qualification is a level D)
  • I am in good standing with my home body
  • I am an EU national

If you responded “no” to any of the above questions then unfortunately you are not eligible for membership under the RPQ Directive.

How do I apply?

You will need to submit the following supporting documentation to The Applications Team, 321 Avebury Boulevard, Milton Keynes, MK9 2FZ:

  • Completed Application to register for aptitude test eligibility form (PDF 159KB/3 pages)
  • Confirmation of home body membership
  • A letter of good standing from your home body, confirming:
    - you have no disciplinary record with your home body
    - no outstanding complaints with your home body; and
    - that your home body are aware of no ethical or other reason why you could not be admitted to ICAEW.
  • Confirmation from your home body that you qualified with them via their normal training and education route, and not via a reciprocal or advanced credit route 
  • Proof that your qualification is listed on the EU Commission's website 
  • Evidence of your nationality, such as a copy of your passport
  • A copy of the syllabus you sat and your exam transcripts from qualifications you wish to cite under the Directive

All documents produced by your home body must be certified in English in order for your application to be processed. Failure to provide all of the information with your application may result in a significant delay in your application being assessed.

What is the aptitude test?

You will be required to sit various ICAEW examinations in order to bridge any syllabus differences between your home qualification and the ICAEW’s ACA qualification.

The syllabus information provided by you will enable us to assess which examinations will make up the aptitude test. The examinations set will be a combination of the existing ACA examinations and you will have a maximum of four attempts to pass each examination. Further information on the assessments, will be provided once we have received your full application.

Practising certificate

If you intend to practise in the UK or EC you must apply for a practising certificate. You may only practice as an ICAEW member if you have been a member with your home body for at least two years.