Settles, Thomas E. - Monteagle, TN

As a result of an investigation of alleged violations of the Codes of Professional Conduct of the AICPA, Mr. Settles entered into a settlement agreement under the Joint Ethics Enforcement Program, effective May 3, 2012.

Information came to the attention of the Ethics Charging Authority (“ECA”) (comprised of the AICPA Professional Ethics Executive Committee) alleging a potential disciplinary matter with respect to Mr. Settles’ performance of professional tax services as well as the preparation of his own returns.

After an investigation, Mr. Settles was charged with violating the following rules of the AICPA Code of Professional Conduct:

Rule 201 – General Standards, B. Due Professional Care and D. Sufficient Relevant Data
He failed to produce adequate support or written legal opinion when creating a tax strategy to be used on his 1998, 1999, 2000, and 2001 federal income tax returns and to be introduced to his clients.  

Rule 202 – Compliance with Standards
He failed to comply with Statements on Standards for Tax Services §100.10, §100.02, and §9100 when filing his 2000, and 2001 federal income tax returns (which did not disclose a questionable tax strategy).

Rule 501 – Acts Discreditable
He failed to comply with IRS Circular 230 in all of the above violations.

In consideration of the ECA foregoing further investigation of Mr. Settle’s conduct as described above and in consideration of the ECA foregoing any further proceedings in these matters, Mr. Settles agrees as follows:
a.  To waive his rights to a hearing under AICPA bylaws Section 7.4.
b.  To neither admit nor deny the above-specified charges.
c.  To comply immediately with professional standards applicable to the professional services he performs.
d.  To have his membership terminated by the AICPA.
e.  That the ECA shall publish his name, the charges, and the terms of this agreement.