Introducing Diploma of Investigative and Forensic Accounting: A Case Research in Lebanon

DIFA, Diploma of Investigative and Forensic Accounting, is gaining acceptance because of its significance in going through corruptive enterprise practices and monetary theft. Nonetheless, the absence of Forensic Accounting (FA) continues to be observed in nations of opaque enterprise practices. Moreover, solely few universities internationally are introducing DIFA, thus a serious work needs to be finished to shed the sunshine on the significance of the diploma within the first place after which supply it as an official diploma with programs regarding FA whether or not in universities or monetary establishments.

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main concern lies in the truth that Forensic Accounting is neither supplied in universities as a diploma, nor at monetary establishments to detect fraud and make authorized court docket reviews. In lots of universities of Canada and the US, the DIFA, is being included within the curriculum with a view to recruit new college students and supply abilities set for profession development by improvement of a specialised area of interest. One of many goals of the Alliance for Excellence in Investigative and Forensic Accounting (Alliance), established by the Canadian Institute of Chartered Accountants (CICA), is to develop and handle a specialist certification program. This diploma is designed as a complete program for somebody who needs to follow on this space. CPA, CFA, CIA are examples of certificates granted in Lebanon, nonetheless, no diploma is on the market associated to Forensic Accounting. Due to this fact, it might be a diploma given in instructional establishments that grant CPA or some other certification associated to auditing or accounting.

Moreover, the significance of adopting FA within the universities’ accounting curriculum is highlighted particularly that its demand for it’s rising step by step. Such adoption has an enormous potential to reinforce college students’ abilities and competencies and might be used as a veritable useful resource from which fraud might be mitigated. Contemporary graduates can as effectively attain the DIFA program that gives a broad vary of information and abilities to hold out monetary investigations. This vary contains accounting, audit, earnings tax data, fraud data, data of regulation and guidelines of proof, an investigative mentality and significant skepticism, understanding of psychology and motivation, and powerful communication abilities (Stott, 2005).

This system focuses on data and abilities that may be finest taught and examined in individual: similar to dealing with a face-to-face assembly with a shopper, interviewing abilities, and testifying in court docket as an professional witness. DIFA helps accountants with the data and abilities wanted to bridge the hole between current quantification fashions and ideas and completely different litigation contexts (Stott, 2005).

Based mostly on descriptive statistics of survey outcomes carried out in Lebanon, being a rustic of opaque enterprise practices, to establish the certificates forensic accountant should possess confirmed that:

  • 59.09% of the respondents thought forensic accountant ought to have a DIFA;
  • 31.82% proposed that CPA is the wanted certificates (Licensed Public Accountant);
  • 20.91% thought that CFA is the suitable one (Chartered Monetary Analyst);
  • 10.00% talked about different sorts of certification.
  • 2.12% of the respondents did not discover it essential to have any certification to change into a forensic accountant.

Moreover, the relation between occupation and the respondents’ opinion concerning the sorts of certifications forensic accountant should possess was additionally studied. The next breakdown reveals the chances of respondents who proposed that DIFA is the essential certification primarily based on job occupation.

  • 69.10% of the respondents working in banking or insurance coverage
  • 51.60% of the respondents working in finance
  • 72.70% of the respondents working in schooling
  • 80% of the respondents working in administration

Nonetheless, a lot of the respondents within the accounting subject thought that CPA is the kind of certification that must be possessed by the forensic accountant with a 77.10%. Folks working in accounting normally are inclined to pursue a CPA diploma for the assistance it supplies on this area.

Along with the above, the relation between expertise and the respondents’ opinion concerning the sorts of certification forensic accountant should possess was additionally studied. The outcomes, primarily based on those that select DIFA because the wanted certificates, had been as follows:

  • most respondents with greater than two years’ expertise thought that DIFA is the wanted certification to follow FA
  • 51.90% of respondents with 2 years’ expertise and fewer thought that DIFA is the wanted certification to follow FA;
  • 68.80% between 2 and 6 years of expertise thought that DIFA is the wanted certification to follow FA;
  • 55.40% of these with lower than 2 years or no expertise in any respect thought that CPA is the kind of certification that must be possessed by the forensic accountant.

Furthermore, the surveys carried out answered the query whether or not the respondents approve that the DIFA must be included within the Lebanese college applications. It demonstrates that:

  • 97.88% of the respondents accepted having a DIFA within the universities;
  • 2.12% of them did not settle for having a DIFA within the universities;

That is particularly essential since a lot of the Lebanese persons are within the stage of pursuing their instructional levels of which the best proportion is finding out finance.

Supporting the outcomes of the surveys, interviews had been additionally carried out to learn about the kind of certificates FA should maintain. Most respondents accredited that there must be a certification granted to a forensic accountant. This may be illustrated by what the accounting supervisor at “Malia Group Multinational Firm” (with 5 years of expertise) acknowledged by saying: “It must be taught in universities and the enterprise house owners ought to request of their vacancies for an accountant with a sure certifications similar to DIFA”

The interviewees’ solutions confused that it must be launched in all universities and academic establishments resulting in a certificates (DIFA), and candidates ought to have data and a level in accounting and auditing. As one interviewee, a companion at Bureau d’Analyse et de Revision Comptable (BARC) for auditing and taxation (with 33-36 years of expertise) places it: “It’s a technique to forestall corruption that is why I specify that it must be taught in universities as a result of I strongly agree that it’s carried out”. Relating interviewees’ suggestions to incorporate FA in college applications, the pinnacle of audit division at “skilled auditors” (11 years of expertise) states: “FA is essential for dishonest strategies, it may be launched in universities“.

Interviewees gave completely different responses and recommendations about what is required to carry out Forensic Accounting. One interviewee coded that: “There are particular educating applications similar to CPA and there are particular applications for licensed monetary forensic and DIFA”(Associate of an audit and taxation agency “Bureau d’Analyse et de Revision Comptable with 33-36 years of expertise). Thus interviewees thought forensic accountant must be an skilled auditor or has a deep data in legal guidelines; the kind of certification wanted might be CPA (licensed public accountant), or have a license in accounting, a certification or a diploma from the LACPA (Lebanese Affiliation of Licensed Public Accounting). As an example the pinnacle of the audit division at skilled Auditors indicated that: “In fact you’ll want to have a license in accounting and possibly CPA, for instance in our LACPA Lebanese affiliation of certifies public accounting possibly you will get this diploma there”.

Different interviewees mentioned that FA ought to clearly have a level in accounting in addition to the wanted expertise to have the ability to detect suspicious acts, or have a BA diploma with points associated to fraud and disclosure, CPA is a plus, or possibly have CFE. A lecturer and former companion at KMPG (with 15 to 17 years of expertise) commented on this matter by saying: “On the tutorial stage the very best certification can be CFE if anybody needs to be concerned in that matter he should go for such certification specialised in fraud examination”.

If anybody seeks to be concerned on this area he should go for such certification specialised in fraud examination. Others mentioned that FA already has CPA or lengthy expertise. Moreover, a forensic accountant, as an auditor have acknowledged: “ought to have investigative abilities and you need to do the correct coaching with a view to be competent”. Different interviewees additionally famous forensic accountant ought to have investigative abilities and endure correct coaching with a view to be competent or be a licensed accountant with sure abilities and expertise; the certifications wanted are an accounting diploma or a regulation diploma because the forensic accountant might must testify in courts. Or have a proper schooling in fraud; certifications might be CPA or CFE.

One other essential assertion coded from the interviewees is that “To change into a forensic accountant, you’ll want to be a licensed accountant with sure abilities and expertise, the certifications wanted are accounting diploma or regulation diploma because the forensic accountant may testify in courts” (Accounting Supervisor at Malia Group, with eight years of expertise).


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