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A career in forensic accounting | Why a career in accountancy | ICAEW Careers

A career in forensic accounting

If you have keen analytical and problem-solving skills why not put those to use to investigate financial crime? As an ICAEW Chartered Accountant specialising in forensic accountancy you can become a detective of the finance world.

Key skills:

Problem solving

Interpersonal skills

Communication skills

Attention to detail

Logical approach

Making use of your analytical skills

Application of law

Particularly, the ability to relate legislation to a variety of different situations

Working in forensic accounting

Forensic accountants use their expertise in finance to investigate fraud and other financial misrepresentation. They work analysing financial information to enable lawyers to prosecute criminals, such as those funding illegal activities, and with insurance companies and other clients to resolve disputes. 

Forensic accountants are trained to look beyond the numbers and deal with the business realities of situations. This enables them to identify criminal activities, such as money laundering activities and the illegal sale of arms.

Analysis, interpretation, summarisation and the presentation of complex financial and business related issues are prominent features of the profession.

A forensic accountant will be familiar with legal concepts and procedures, and must be able to communicate financial information clearly and concisely in the courtroom. 

As an ACA student you might be:

  • investigating and analysing financial evidence;
  • developing computerised applications to assist in the analysis and presentation of financial evidence;
  • communicating findings in the form of reports, exhibits and collections of documents; and
  • assisting in legal proceedings, including testifying in court as an expert witness and preparing visual aids to support trial evidence.

Why work in forensic accounting?

Forensic accountants enjoy a diverse workload that changes with their case load. You could be investigating the misappropriation of government funds; money laundering or the funding of terrorism.

Alongside this variety of work forensic accountants have the satisfaction of helping to ensure justice and bring criminals to account.

Nicholas Parton, Manager, EY

Nicholas Parton Forensic accountant, EY

Location: London, UK

Read Nicholas' story

Who can you work for?

  • Accountancy firms
  • Insurance companies
  • Banks
  • Police forces
  • Government agencies

5.1m

incidents of fraud in the UK in the 12 months to May 2015*

*Data source: : Crime Survey for England and Wales Field Trial, Office for National Statistics, October 2015

Find your ACA training agreement

You can find ACA training opportunities, placements and internships via our Training Vacancies website, where you can sign up to receive alerts when new vacancies are posted.

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