(1)This section shall have effect for the purpose of securing satisfactory evidence of compliance with the accounts rules.
(2)Subject to the following provisions of this section, every solicitor to whom the accounts rules apply shall, in accordance with the rules made under subsection (3), deliver to the Council a certificate by an accountant (in this section referred to as an " accountant's certificate ").
(3)The Council shall make rules (in this Act referred to as " accountant's certificate rules ") prescribing—
(a)the qualifications to be held by an accountant by whom an accountant's certificate may be given;
(b)the nature and extent of the examination to be made by an accountant of the books and accounts of a solicitor or his firm and of any other relative documents with a view to the signing of an accountant's certificate;
(c)the intervals at which an accountant's certificate shall be delivered to the Council, not being more frequent than once in each practice year;
(d)the accounting period for which an accountant's certificate shall be delivered or the different accounting periods for which in different circumstances an accountant's certificate shall be delivered ;
(e)the period within which an accountant's certificate shall be delivered; and
(f)the form and content of an accountant's certificate.
(4)The accountant's certificate rules may include such other provisions as the Council consider necessary or proper for the purpose of giving effect to the foregoing provisions of this section and for regulating any incidental, consequential or supplementary matters.
(5)The delivery of an accountant's certificate in pursuance of subsection (2) shall not be required in the case of —
(a)a solicitor who, in agreement with the Council, furnishes to the Council and keeps in force a fidelity bond by an insurance office or other institution accepted by the Court as cautioners for a judicial factor appointed by the Court for such amount as the Council may determine, guaranteeing the intromissions of the solicitor or his firm with money held by him or them for or on behalf of clients; or
(b)a solicitor who satisfies the Council that during the accounting period to which the accountant's certificate would ordinarily relate he has not in the course of his practice held or received any money on behalf of clients.
(6)If the Council are of opinion that satisfactory evidence of compliance with the accounts rules for the time being in force will be secured by some method other than by delivery of an accountant's certificate under subsection (2), they may make rules—
(i)that other method ;
(ii)the terms and conditions to be observed in connection therewith; and
(iii)the procedure to be followed by solicitors desiring to adopt that other method, and
(b)containing such incidental, consequential and supplementary provisions relative thereto as the Council may consider necessary or proper ;
and a solicitor who satisfies the Council that he is complying with rules made under this subsection shall not be required to deliver an accountant's certificate in pursuance of subsection (2).
(7)A certificate under the hand of the secretary of the Society certifying that a specified solicitor has or has not, as the case may be, delivered to the Council an accountant's certificate, or supplied any evidence required from him under this section or under the accountant's certificate rules or, as the case may be, under any rules made under subsection (6), shall, unless the contrary is proved, be evidence of the fact so certified.
(8)Failure by a solicitor to comply with any provision of this section or of the accountant's certificate rules or of any rules made under subsection (6), so far as applicable to him, may be treated as professional misconduct for the purposes of Part IV.