ABA Membership Essentials

Below is a summary of the essential information relating to ABA Membership. (Click on each heading to expand.) 

To view ABA’s By-Laws and Constitution in full, please visit ABA Statutory.


Classes of Membership

Australian Bookkeepers Association has three classes of Membership:

  1. Voting Members, who are entitled to attend ABA meetings and vote in any ballot of the Association in the manners prescribed in the Rules;
  2. Non-Voting Members, who are entitled to attend ABA meetings but are not entitled to vote in any ballot of the Association; and
  3. Corporate Members, who are entitled to attend ABA meetings but are not entitled to vote in any ballot of the Association.

Requirements for Membership

In the case of admission as a Voting Member, an applicant must provide documentary evidence (if requested) to the reasonable satisfaction of ABA that:

  1. they are the holder of at least a Certificate IV Financial Services (bookkeeping) or a Certificate IV Financial Services (accounting) from a registered training organisation or an equivalent institution (within the meaning of the TASA Legislation);
  2. they are of good fame, integrity and character;
  3. They must in each 12 month period following their admittance to Membership (CPE Year), undertake at least 15 structured hours of continuing professional education within the meaning of the TASA legislation and
  4. if they are in public practice, that they have appropriate professional indemnity insurance.

 
In the case of admission as a Non-Voting Member, the Membership of an applicant must, to the reasonable satisfaction of ABA, be considered to advance the Objects.

Joint memberships of ABA are not permitted.

Cost of Membership

The membership fee payable by each Member is $77.00 GST-inclusive per annum, other than for Australian Bookkeepers Network Pty Ltd members who are also Australian Bookkeepers Association Ltd members, in which case the membership fee is waived pursuant to an agreement with Australian Bookkeepers Network Pty Ltd for the provision of member support services to Australian Bookkeepers Association Ltd.

The initial annual membership fee (where applicable) is payable through the ABA website at time of application. A Tax Invoice will be issued to you once your application has been approved. A full refund will be given if your application is rejected.

Term of Membership

If you are a member of Australian Bookkeepers Network:

Your ABA membership will continue indefinitely while ever you are a member of Australian Bookkeepers Network. Should your membership of Australian Bookkeepers Network cease for whatever reason, you will be contacted by ABA to determine whether you wish to maintain your ABA membership (in which case, a $77.00 GST-inclusive per annum membership fee will apply). 

If you are not a member of Australian Bookkeepers Network:

Your initial ABA membership period commences on the date of your application (assuming a successful payment of your initial membership fee) and expires 12 months from the end of the calendar month in which you applied. For example, if you applied on 10 January 2015, your initial membership period would expire on 31 January 2016.

In the month prior to your initial membership expiring, a Tax Invoice will be emailed to you containing your membership fee for the ensuing 12 month period.

Professional and Ethical Standards

The Code of Professional Conduct (as explained through the ABA By-Laws) is mandatory for all Members, in so far as its provisions are reasonably applicable to the circumstances of each Member, regardless of whether or not the Member is registered under the TASA Legislation as a Tax Agent or BAS Agent.

The Objects include the promotion of the interests of the bookkeeping profession and of bookkeepers.  To this end, the Association expects all of its Members to display a level of professionalism and ethical standing which reflects positively on the Association and the bookkeeping professions.  When Members are providing services, it is expected that they will display an appropriate, professional standard of behaviour beyond that which is expected of someone who is not acting in a professional capacity.

Misconduct and Penalties

A Member will be deemed to have acted with misconduct where the Member:  

  1. has been found by the ABA Board to be in breach of the Rules;
  2. has, in the reasonable opinion of the ABA Board, failed to observe a proper standard of professional care, skill or competence, including but not limited to breaching the Code of Professional Conduct;
  3. has, in the reasonable opinion of the ABA Board, obtained admission to Membership by improper means;
  4. has, in the reasonable opinion of the ABA Board, ceased to hold the necessary qualifications for Membership;
  5. has, in the reasonable opinion of the ABA Board, been charged with an offence or been guilty of conduct which is not in the best interests of the Association;
  6. has failed to comply with any reasonable request made by the ABA Board, Investigator or other Officer of the Association;
  7. has failed to comply with an order of the ABA Board; or
  8. ceases to have capacity at law.

 
Where a Member has been deemed to have acted with misconduct as set out in the ABA By-Laws, ABA may:  

  1. forfeit the Membership of the Member;
  2. suspend the Membership of the Member for any period, and on such terms, as seen fit;
  3. counsel or caution the Member;
  4. impose a fine not exceeding $1,000 with a consequence of forfeiture of Membership if payment is not made within such period as the Board prescribes;
  5. require payment of any costs and expenses reasonably incurred by the Association in the investigation and determination of any matter concerning the misconduct of the Member;
  6. inform the regulators of any professional body of which the Member is a member, including but not limited to the Tax Practitioners Board; and
  7. impose any other penalty deemed appropriate.

Cancellation of Membership by ABA Member

An ABA Member may at any time resign as a member of the Association by giving ABA notice in writing. Unless the notice provides otherwise, a resignation by a Member is of immediate effect. No refund of membership fees are provided where members having paid their annual membership fee, cancel part way through their 12 month term.     

If a Complaint has been lodged against a Member in accordance with the By-Laws, the Member may not resign until all regulatory procedures have been completed (if any) unless ABA otherwise consents.

ABA membership is not capable of being transferred to another person; and terminates upon cessation of the person's Membership.

Cancellation of Membership by ABA

ABA reserves the right to cancel/forfeit  your membership at any time for reasons including, but not limited to, failure to pay annual subscription fees;  being expelled from the Association under its Constitution or  if a person whose actions in the opinion of the ABA Board brings the Association into serious disrepute.

No refund of membership fees are provided where members having paid their annual membership fee, have their membership cancelled part way through their 12 month term.