The lifeblood of the CPA profession is controlled by the legislature and, in fact, the entire profession could be eliminated with the mere passage of one piece of legislation. The Society is your voice, and Louisiana-CPA-PAC plays an important role in that voice by educating federal, state and local legislators on key issues impacting CPAs and the citizens and businesses they serve. Your annual contribution to LA-CPA-PAC supports the profession and is your way to be a part of the legislative process.
The LCPA is proud to provide this summary of our Legislative Accomplishments.
- Passed legislation enabling Louisiana to become a no notification, no fee state as part of the national mobility effort. This allows CPAs to move from state to state without having to notify the state boards unless they are performing an audit of a company domiciled in that state.
- Passed legislation exempting from license requirements by CPAs relative to real estate appraisers.
- Passed legislation enacting the Uniform Local Tax Code.
- Passed legislation that provides the same privilege that attorneys have, concerning communications between CPAs and their clients or employers. Also the legislation changes how CPAs’ records can be obtained by subpoena.
- Passed legislation revising the Louisiana Accounting Laws to reflect the new Uniform Accounting Act. Legislation allowed non-CPA ownership of CPA firms, allowed CPAs to receive commission and contingent fees under certain circumstances, changed the experience requirement to one year of broad based experience and making Louisiana a one-tier state and other changes. Also placed privity in statutes.
- Passed legislation exempting all tax-deferred arrangements and annuity contracts from seizure in certain cases (bankruptcy).
- Passed legislation allowing single member LLCs; clarifying that a profit or non-profit entity may be organized as an LLC, and that LLCs are presumed to have a perpetual existence unless the documents organizing the LLC state otherwise.
- Passed legislation exempting CPAs and their employees from duplicate regulation by the State Board of Private Investigator Examiners when conducting financial audits and other types of services.
- Passed legislation creating pre-trial review panels for CPAs. Before any CPA can be sued for malpractice, the case must be heard before a panel of three CPAs, one chosen by each party and a third chosen by the first two. The review panel’s findings are admissible in court, should the claim go to trial.
- Prevented introduction of sales tax on professional services legislation. Presently seeking legislative remedy to the Louisiana Supreme Court decision in South Central Bell vs. Sidney Barthelemy in the form of a statute that would redefine canned vs. Custom software and prevent any further erosion in the sales tax on professional services area.
- Supported and helped pass legislation that ended joint and several liability and holds defendants liable only for their degree of fault.
- Passed legislation establishing audit frequency for all governmental and quasi-public entities.
- Passed legislation lowering the rate of penalty for late payment of individual income taxes to .5% per month.
- Passed various pieces of legislation to keep Louisiana's Accountancy Act on the leading edge of CPA regulation in the country including a provision that a firm's policies, procedure manuals and personnel evaluations are not admissible in a civil case against a CPA.
- Was part of a coalition to opposed legislation that would have enacted punitive damages, joint and several liability and protective orders provisions which were all part of the trial lawyers package.
- Supported and helped pass legislation to change Louisiana from a "joint and several" state to a "modified proportion and liability" state.
- Supported and helped pass legislation to enact the S corporations in Louisiana.
- Passed legislation resolving a multiple year issue with the Legislative Auditor's Office related to the audit of local governments. As a result, $1.5 million (annually) of local governmental audit work was moved from the government sector to the private CPA sector.
- Passed legislation specifically exempting CPAs from duplicate regulation of the Real Estate Commission and the Office of Financial Institutions as it relates to business valuations and financial planning, respectfully.
- Passed legislation to assure that firms undergoing a quality or peer review would not also have to undergo the State Board's Positive Enforcement Program reducing the possibility of the double costs for CPA firms. This was the first of its kind legislation in the country.
- Passed the only one of its kind legislation in the country to protect CPAs as it relates to financial institutions requiring that in any financial institutions malpractice suit the standard of malpractice shall be the same as for every other type of business. This prohibits holding CPAs to a higher standard of practice in financial institutions cases which has been the position of the RTC and other federal agencies.
- Passed legislation authorizing a Registered Limited Liability Partnership -- one of only two states to enact such legislation. The RLLP provides tort protection equal to that of the LLC without any of the tax complexities of converting to an LLC.
- Passed legislation authorizing the limited liability company, including the authorization that professionals can practice under this form. This legislation is also very beneficial for members in industry because it is a viable option for all business entities in the state.
- Passed legislation specifically providing that workpapers for CPAs need only be kept three years to correspond with the statute of limitations.
- Passed legislation clarifying multi-state jurisdiction over CPA malpractice issues to specifically indicate where a choice of state law is available that the Louisiana law shall be used. Louisiana law is more beneficial than our neighboring states.
- Passed legislation creating a privilege for all quality review documents making them inadmissible in civil court proceedings.
- Passed legislation making the statute of limitations reduction retroactive for work performed prior to 1988.
- Passed legislation reducing statute of limitations for CPAs from ten years to three years, from the longest in the country to the best in the country.