The Public Accountants Board of Nova Scotia (PABNS) is an independent body created under authority of the Public Accountants Act.      The Board currently consists of 5 members who are appointed by the Governor in Council.

The mandate of the PABNS is to maintain public accounting practice standards that are consistent with national standards and at a level that protects the public interest.     The PABNS coordinates its activities with the Chartered Professional Accountants of Nova Scotia (CPANS) to achieve this mandate.     The powers of the Board are outlined in section 6 of the Public Accountants Act (the Act can be found in the Documents Section of this web site).

The practice of public accounting means the performance of or an offer to perform either of the following services for a member of the public:

  1. An assurance engagement as set out in the applicable sections of the CPA Canada Handbook – Assurance
  2. A specified auditing procedure engagement (review engagement) as set out in the applicable sections of the CPA Canada Handbook – Assurance

Any person who performs a public accounting service in Nova Scotia, must be annually licensed by the PABNS.    There is now a two tier license structure in Nova Scotia with one tier permitting the licensee to perform both audits and review engagements, and second tier allowing the licensee to perform only review engagements.    The criteria for licensure and the process to apply for both an initial license, as well as annual renewal, can be found in the Documents Section of this web site.    The Board considers applications on a timely basis, usually within one month of receipt of a fully completed application.

A license is not required to issue Notice To Reader financial statements or in performing other non-public accounting services such as accounting, bookkeeping, tax preparation, management or computer consulting.

The Board does not provide translation services.

Become a Licensee

Qualified persons may apply for a license.

The license fee is payable through PayPal or cheque, payable to The Public Accountants Board Of The Province Of Nova Scotia. Persons who are members of professional accounting bodies must also submit a letter of good standing from their association.

If you do not hold yourself out to be a Public Accountant you do not need to be licensed to perform the following functions:

Accounting, Bookkeeping, Tax, Management Consulting, Computer Consulting
Become a Licensee