Accountants Code of Ethics
This paper will focus on giving insight to the code of ethics or behavior that accountants are expected and are now required to demonstrate. Accountants have a dedicated and professional understanding of the financial rules and regulations that businesses, organizations and individuals must follow when doing business and just living in the United States. Businesses, the government and the public are not financial experts and typically are not keenly aware of the financial codes and regulations, and therefore trust accountants to advise them appropriately. An accountant is expected to be a person of integrity, honor, objectivity and respect. Companies rely on trusting relationships with accountants to help them to meet their financial goals and maintain a competitive edge in their respective industries.
The Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) is a securities legislation enacted in 2002 by then President George W. Bush in direct response to the public business and financial scandals of that time, most notably Enron, Arthur Andersen and WorldCom. SOX was implemented to protect the public and stock market investors from major scandals via corporate accounting. This significant and mandatory piece of legislation introduced major changes for all organizations in financial practice regulations and corporate governance compliance. Businesses became tasked with adopting and even developing the ever-evolving role of ethical leadership and exhibitors of best practices of corporate governance as it relates to the efficiency and success of businesses, their shareholders, stakeholders and the United States economy.
Because of the deception and abuse uncovered in these scandals which involved executives and accountants, consumer confidence in corporate America and in accountants suffered. And who can blame them? With such blatant abuse and disregard of the morals and ethics naturally expected of those in positions of power, it easy for the public to...