Professional Accountancy, giving you the life of Riley...

Meaning - An easy and pleasant life.

We strive to make the financial aspects of running
your business or organisation as easy as possible.
We're more than just accountants.

We can help you grow your business, and advise you
on the best strategy to give you...the life of Riley.

Mock Tribunal Event

Date posted: May 18, 2017

On Wednesday 10th May, in partnership with Yorkshires Legal people, Chadwick Lawrence, a Mock Employment Tribunal was held to demonstrate the events that occur during an Employment Tribunal case. The event was hosted at Square Chapel in Halifax, and was extremely well attended by local business leaders.

The fictitious case demonstrated what would typically occur during a constructive unfair dismissal and sex discrimination case, and was heard by an ‘Employment Judge’, complete with ‘Claimants’and ‘Respondents’ to ensure delegates received an accurate picture of skills required as a representative or witness in a similar trial.

Trial bundles and witness statements were provided beforehand to ensure maximum understanding of the facts and legal issues before the trial. Throughout the trial, delegates were invited to ask questions of the witnesses and volunteers acted as lay members. After hearing the witness evidence and closing submissions, delegates had the opportunity to ask questions and vote on what they believed the outcome would be prior to the delivery of the final verdict.

Experienced barristers from Broadway House Chambers donated their time to play the parts of Judge and Barristers, and provided delegates with a great opportunity to witness a live mock employment tribunal hearing.

This provided local business members the opportunity to experience how the tribunal process is conducted and to see how the outcome is determined. It also provided delegates with the opportunity to learn how they should prepare should they find themselves in a similar situation, and to appreciate the tension and the drama that can sometimes be involved in cases such as this.

Sam Pawson, Commercial Development Co-ordinator at Chadwick Lawrence, commented: “It was interesting to witness not only the mock tribunal itself, but how our delegates engaged with the event and the questions they proposed throughout. There was a great attendance from local business leaders who have equally praised the event and how informative it was.”

Simon Walton of Riley’s & Co Accountants commented: “We were thrilled by the turnout at the Mock Tribunal event and were happy to be a co-host for such an informative event for the local business community.”

A delegate, Charles Brook of Brooks Business Recovery commented: “I just want to say, thank you, for an excellent event and a superbly managed presentation. It worked really well to underline just why you not only need to have processes and procedures in place to address the issues that it touched upon but, also the fundamental importance of making proper enquiries, keeping contemporaneous notes, notifying and recording the basis of decisions and generally, not acting in an arbitrary manner.
Thanks to you all for co-hosting this exceptionally interesting and useful event and for inviting me. I wish now that I had brought more of my team along. If I have any employment-related issues I will be calling Chadwick Lawrence first”


Vacancy – Apprentice Accountant (ICAEW Level 4 Trailblazer)

Date posted: May 4, 2017

Vacancy – Apprentice Accountant (ICAEW Level 4 Trailblazer)

Job title – Trainee Accountant

Location – Halifax town centre

Weekly Wage – £12,000 pa

Hours – 35 hours per week

Position – permanent to start September 2017

A fantastic opportunity has arisen for a Trainee Accountant to join the Riley & Co team and develop a promising career.

As an apprentice within Riley & Co, you will work alongside an experienced team, get real hands on experience and gain an industry recognised qualification.

In brief the role will comprise:

  • Accounts preparation
  • Bookkeeping and vat returns
  • Audit work
  • Answering client queries by email and telephone
  • Using in house accounting and tax software
  • Assisting with administrative duties where required

Personal Qualities:

  • Excellent communication skills
  • Ability to prioritise and plan own workloads
  • Good level of literacy and numeracy
  • Strong IT skills
  • Attention to detail
  • Excellent timekeeping and attendance record
  • Enthusiasm

Required Qualifications:

  • 3 A level (or equivalent) passes at grade C or above
  • 5 GCSE passes including Maths & English at grade C or above

Riley & Co has been providing the highest quality accountancy, audit and tax planning services for over 30 years and has become one of the leading independent practices within Calderdale.

Our history charts the success we have enjoyed in helping Calderdale businesses and individuals achieve their financial goals and tax objectives.

If you are an articulate, enthusiastic individual and want to be a part of this continued success, please send your CV together with a covering letter to Vicky Atkinson (Director) by email to

What’s the problem with Mortgage References?

Date posted: May 4, 2017

More and more we are being asked to assist clients with mortgage lending references.

These requests can come directly from the lender, via a mortgage broker or from the client themselves and very often they can be a cause of consternation with the lender in terms of the type of information we are able to provide.

A mortgage reference will usually ask us to confirm that we act for the client, confirm the period for which we have acted, and in relation to the accounts of the business to confirm details relating to income, business profits and salary levels of the business owners. The reference will also very often ask us to provide projections or estimates for those periods where accounts are not available or for future periods.

The issue that arises is that as a firm of Chartered Accountants, which operates under the rules of the Institute of Chartered Accountants for England and Wales (ICAEW), is that the ICAEW specifically precludes us from providing anything except factual information in response to such requests. We are also restricted in relation to provision of information of this kind by our public indemnity insurers. This is because of the risk to the firm of the information being used to support a lending decision, and the potential for us to be contractually obligated if the lending provided is not subsequently repaid. This is also the reason that reference requests are not charged for by ICAEW member firms.

Before we consider what we can and can’t provide, it is also worth noting that we can only respond to a formal request from the lender themselves. This should be in writing and addressed specifically to the firm. If a mortgage broker made a general request for a reference to hold on file, ‘just in case’, we would be unable to provide a response in that case, the reference needs to relate to a specific application to a specific lender.

In limited cases it might be appropriate for us to refuse to provide a reference at all and for new clients it may be inappropriate for us to provide a reference relating to periods where we have not acted for them.

So what can we provide?

  • Factual information relating to accounting periods where the accounts have been completed and submitted to HMRC by ourselves
  • Factual information relating to business ownership
  • Details of the dates we have acted for the client
  • Details of the dates the business commenced trading (if known)
  • A limited opinion ‘that in our experience we would have no reason to suppose the client would enter into an agreement which they were not able to fulfil’

What can’t we provide?


  • Opinions on the future of the business
  • Confirmation of future earnings

We will always work with our clients and the lenders concerned to try and reach a solution to any issues in relation to the provision of mortgage references, lenders may claim that other firms are happy to provide this information ‘why are you being obstructive!’, but this is not the case for any firm operating under the rules of the ICAEW. Very often we can provide much of the information required, but using our own templates and wording as per ICAEW guidance.

Mock Employment Tribunal Hearing

Date posted: May 2, 2017

In partnership with Chadwick Lawrence, we are hosting a live mock employment tribunal.  On this occasion, the event will be delivered by barristers and solicitors and is a great opportunity to observe the cross examination skills you may experience as a ‘representative’ or a ‘claimant’.

For more details of this event see below: