"Fit and proper" requirements

AAT requires all members to maintain the high standards expected of the profession and not act in a way that poses a risk to the public or could undermine public confidence in AAT, its members, or the wider profession.

Our "fit and proper" requirements apply to the following AAT memberships:

  • AAT bookkeeping membership (AATQB)
  • AAT full membership (MAAT)
  • AAT fellow membership (FMAAT) 
  • AAT licensed members.

It is important that you understand the requirements asked of you and the professional standards you are expected to meet.

Declarations and disclosure

Criminal convictions, civil sanctions, insolvency and disciplinary sanctions are indicators that an individual may not be a fit and proper person to either enter or remain in the profession. 

If you are a member of AAT, or applying to become one, you will need to answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to the following statements: 

  • I have been declared bankrupt
  • I have been subject to a Debt Relief Order
  • I have entered into an arrangement with my creditors
  • I have been convicted of a criminal offence that is not spent under The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1978
  • I have been subject to a civil sanction
  • I have been issued with a County Court Judgement (CCJ)
  • I am subject to a disciplinary sanction made by another professional body

If an applicant answers 'yes' to any of these statements, their AAT membership status or membership application will be reviewed in line with the policies below.


AAT's Criminal Convictions policy

Explains how AAT assesses membership and licence applications where the applicant has disclosed an unspent conviction. It also details how AAT addresses convictions disclosed by current members. Download AAT's Criminal Convictions policy (PDF)

AAT's Insolvency policy

Explains how insolvency can impact on an application for membership and its implications for current AAT members. Download AAT's Insolvency policy (PDF)

AAT's Civil Sanctions policy

Sets out the implications of civil findings such as disqualification as a director, or sanctions under the Companies Act. Download AAT's Civil Sanctions policy (PDF)


AAT's Disciplinary Sanctions policy

Details the requirement of current and prospective members to disclose disciplinary sanctions from other professional bodies. Download AAT's Disciplinary Sanctions policy (PDF)


AAT's Suitability for Membership guidance

Sets out the information AAT requires to assess a membership application from any applicant who discloses an unspent conviction, bankruptcy, Debt Relief Order (DRO), payment arrangement with creditors, civil sanction, County Court Judgment (CCJ) or disciplinary sanction from another professional body. Download AAT's Suitability for Membership guidance (PDF)


The AAT Glossary (PDF) provides definitions for the terms used in AAT's policies, regulations and guidance. 

AAT membership requirements

AAT requires its membership to uphold high standards of conduct and professionalism. This promotes public confidence in the accountancy profession. AAT must ensure that applicants for membership at any level demonstrate not only technical competence but also that they are fit and proper for membership of AAT.

AAT's Membership Criteria policy

Sets out the terms upon which AAT determines whether an applicant is suitable for membership of AAT. Download AAT's Membership Criteria policy (PDF)

AAT's Associate Membership policy

Shows what an applicant must demonstrate in order to be approved as an AAT qualified bookkeeper. Download AAT's Associate Membership policy (PDF)

AAT's Reinstatement policy

Former AAT members who have applied to reinstate their membership will be subject to AAT’s Reinstatement policy. Download AAT's Reinstatement policy (PDF)

AAT's Renewal policy

The criteria required of AAT members to remain a student, affiliate, associate, full or fellow member. Download AAT's Renewal policy (PDF)

AAT's CPD policy

Explains AAT's CPD requirements. AAT members must undertake appropriate CPD to ensure that they remain competent for the work that they do, and to meet their career aspirations, whether their work is of an accounting/financial nature or not. Download AAT's CPD policy (PDF)

The AAT Regulations

The framework for all categories of AAT membership. Download the AAT Regulations (PDF)

The AAT Glossary (PDF) provides definitions for the terms used in AAT's policies, regulations and guidance. 

AAT members' annual declaration process

It is a regulatory requirement for all members to make an annual declaration to AAT.

As part of the declaration, members will be required to confirm the following information each year as part of the membership renewal process:

  • If they are subject to insolvency, a criminal conviction, a civil sanction, or a disciplinary finding by another professional body, which AAT is not already aware of
  • They are providing self-employed accountancy services without holding a valid licence to practise
  • They are complying with the requirements of AAT’s CPD policy (not applicable to students)

AAT uses this information - along with other information we hold or receive about a member - and where we identify a concern or a learning and development need, we may follow up with the member.

In addition to the above, each member must agree to abide by the Articles of Association, Code of Professional Ethics, the AAT Regulations, Licensing Regulations, Disciplinary Regulations and any other policy from time to time in force.