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Notwithstanding the commencement of the further regulatory reform on 1 October 2022, the oversight of QP student discipline remains a responsibility and function of the Institute. 

Improper conduct by registered students concerning qualification and examination matters will be handled by the Qualification and Examinations Board.  

To deal with other complaints which fall under By-law 34 of the Professional Accountants By-laws against a registered student, the Council may constitute a Student Disciplinary Committee (“SDC”) under a fair complaint handling and disciplinary mechanism. These complaints include where a registered student: 


(a) has been convicted of perjury;
(b) has been convicted in Hong Kong or elsewhere of any offence involving dishonesty;
(c) has been guilty of misconduct in carrying out his duties;
(d) has been guilty of conduct which renders the student unfit to become a certified public accountant; or
(e) has refused, or neglected without reasonable excuse, to comply with the By-laws that are applicable to the student.


Overview of Student Disciplinary Procedures


Under By-law 34(1), a complaint against registered students on the above five types of complaints shall be made to the Registrar who shall submit the complaint to the Council. If the Registrar considers that there is sufficient evidence to prove a complaint, the Registrar will request the Council to consider referring the complaint to the SDC.


The Council may, in its discretion, constitute a SDC under by-law 33A to deal with the complaint. Exercise of such discretion will depend on the strength of evidence and the gravity of the complaint.


To preserve the independence of the Council, Council approves that the SDC should consist of three members with one member as the Chairman and the two other as members. They should be nominated and appointed from members of the Registration Committee, given their experience in considering fit and proper issue. As far as possible, a lay member should be appointed into a SDC. The Chairman of the Registration Committee, or the Deputy Chairman of the Registration Committee if the Chairman has a conflict with the case, will be the Convenor or Alternate Convenor to appoint members into the SDC. A conflict check will be performed before nominated members are formally appointed.


The procedures of the SDC follow the Student Disciplinary Committee Proceedings Rules (“SDCPR”), which is largely modelled on the previous Disciplinary Committee Proceedings Rules with simplified procedures with a view to streamlining the procedures and to ensure procedural fairness in all proceedings. It governs matters including the filing of documents and evidence, handling of procedural issues, hearing of a complaint if the complaint is contested.


The administration of the SDC will be guided in general by the Guidelines for the Chairman and the Committee on Administering the Student Disciplinary Committee Proceedings Rules  (“Guideline”). Under the Guideline, if a complaint is before the SDC, the SDC will issue through the Clerk a procedural timetable setting out timelines for the filing of respondent’s defence and evidence, whether witnesses are to be called and provide an opportunity to draw the SDC’s attention to any relevant issue. The Chairman of the SDC will also be able to issue directions to ensure the smooth operation of the SDC. The Clerk will also serve as the point of communication between the SDC and the parties.


If a complaint is proved, the most severe penalty that the SDC may impose under By-law 35 is the removal of the registered student from the register. The other penalties include disqualification from sitting in an examination for not more than two years, reprimand and admonishment.

A registered student who is aggrieved by the decision of the SDC may appeal to the Council.

To lodge a complaint against a HKICPA registered student, please send an email to with your contact information, providing the details of the student under complaint, detailing factual circumstances of the matters leading to your complaint and any supporting documents.


Cases referred to the Student Disciplinary Committee


Student disciplinary orders