Member’s name: (Venkata) Raja Jata CPA
Date of Hearing: 9 March 2011
Tribunal: Disciplinary Tribunal
On 9 March 2011 the Disciplinary Tribunal found Mr (Venkata) Raja Jata breached:
- Article 39(a)(ii)A of the Constitution in that he breached Section 7.2 of APES 220 "Taxation Services" which provides "A Member shall not knowingly or recklessly make a statement or cause another to make a statement in or in connection with a Taxation Service that, by i s content or by an omission, is false or misleading in a material manner”, and
- Article 39(a)(ii)B.2) of the Constitution in that Mr Jata failed to comply with Section 388-75 of Schedule 1 to the Taxation Administration Act 1953 (Cth.) in that the Member lodged a clients income tax return without the clients authorisation or signature or other declaration in writing authorising lodgement;
- Article 39(a)(ii)A of the Constitution in that Mr Jata failed to comply with Section 13.1 of APS 10 - "Trust Accounts" which provides: "A Member who Receives Trust Money shall establish and maintain a Trust Bank Account", in that Mr Jata received client refunds from the ATO without having a Trust Account;
- Article 39(a)(ii)A of the Constitution in that Mr Jata failed to comply with Section 9.1 of APES 220 - "Taxation Services" which provides "A Member in Public Practice shall ensure prompt transmission of monies received on behalf of a Client from Revenue Authorities to the Client” in that Mr Jata retained a client's ATO refund for approximately 3 months without forwarding it to the client.
Penalties and costs
The Disciplinary Tribunal imposed the following sanction and costs:
- in respect of lodging the client’s taxation return without client signature, a severe reprimand,
- in respect of failing to have a Trust Account, a severe reprimand, and
- in the case of not promptly forwarding the client his ATO refund, an admonishment,
The Tribunal also ordered:
- that, by 19 December 2011, Mr Jata undertake and successfully complete a Quality Assurance
Review with no need for Follow Up Review, a failure to meet this requirement to result in forfeiture of
Membership until that Review is satisfactorily completed,
- that Mr Jata successfully redo the Public Practice Program by 31 December 2012, and
- that Mr Jata pay costs of $623, a failure to pay the costs by the due date to result in forfeiture of Membership.
The Tribunal ordered that owing to exceptional circumstances, in particular Mr Jata’s high profile in charitable work within his community, he not be named on CPA Australia’s website unless:
- he fails to pay outstanding subscriptions within 60 days of the date of the Hearing,
- he fails to complete the Public Practice Program by 31 December 2012, or
- if he is again referred to a Disciplinary Tribunal before 31 December 2012 for a disciplinary breach and such breach is found by a Tribunal to be sustained, in which case his name would be disclosed.
As Mr Jata failed to pay his outstanding subscriptions within 60 days of the Tribunal Hearing, the order that his name not be disclosed was lifted.