Wondering About The Vetting Process for Book Chapters

25 May 2018
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Jordan S. Zoot
aBIZinaBOX Inc. CPA's Managing Director - CEO
Let me be careful in beginning this topic by stating that the intention is not to denigrate anyone's work, it is clear that the time involved in preparing the manuscripts and editing for style and content to create a cogent book is a significant task.

My concern is once the book is produced what safeguards are built-in to the process so each author can gain comfort that every other chapter is correct and accurate. 

I have a bit of experience with the topic having been a Tax Partner with Arthur Andersen and written chapters for a number of firm publications. We always had a second and in some cases, the third reviewer read through manuscript chapters to ensure technical accuracy.

When one considers the manner in which these booklets are produced, one would expect that due to the composition of this group, the chapters on the UK and Cyprus will be excellent given the number of practitioners from those countries in the group. Hopefully, there is sufficient US tax expertise, but I am not so sure. The real worry might be from a country like Borneo or Peru where the number of practitioners in this group is pretty small. 

Finally, am I the only person here that has concerns about self-designation as an "EXPERT".

The following is a disgusting and self-serving example of the NAEA referring to NTPI graduates as "experts"/ 

47 Tax Experts Earn Elite Designation from National Association of Enrolled Agents

Washington, DC, November 29, 2017 – Forty-seven tax practitioners just earned the prestigious Fellow designation from the National Association of Enrolled Agents (NAEA) for completing the three levels of the National Tax Practice Institute™ (NTPI®). This achievement demonstrates their dedication to protecting taxpayer rights and attests to their expertise in tax which you can see the original here.

This is what one article states about self lauditory statements by a law firm in its domain name. Most states regulate attorneys' use of the words "expert," "specialist," and other terms that could be misleading or suggest a guaranteed outcome in their clients' cases. Although it is a relatively new area of regulation, many states agree that such restrictions apply also to the domain names for lawyers' websites.

here For example, both Ohio and Kentucky prohibit lawyers from using domain names with deceptive, fraudulent, exaggerated, or false information. While in some states, some attorney advertising restrictions have been struck down as violating the First Amendment, the unsettled nature of the law in this area suggests that attorneys exercise caution when choosing a domain name that may contain certain terms. The full article is here. 

The California Board of Accountancy's position on the topic states. 

"Under Board Rule 501.82, "self-laudatory statements that are not based on verifiable facts" are not acceptable. Although the Board has the authority to recognize specializations in the practice of public accounting, it currently does not do so. See Section 901.157 of the Public Accountancy Act. Accordingly, a CPA should avoid the use of terms like "specialist" as it implies recognition by the Board. Additionally, under Board Rule 501.82(11), records of electronic communication to non-clients must be retained for at least 36 months".

Speaking solely for myself, the self designation as an expert is completely inappropriate in most sitautions, and personally I would be inclined to report any violatiion of the rules I obeserve. Such conduct certainly doesn't help the profession in the long run.