(a) All statements, records, schedules, working papers, and memoranda made by a certified public accountant or public accountant incident to or in the course of professional service to clients by the accountant, except reports submitted by a certified public accountant or public accountant to a client, shall be and remain the property of the accountant, in the absence of an express written agreement between the accountant and the client to the contrary. No statement, record, schedule, working paper, or memorandum shall be sold, transferred, or bequeathed, without the consent of the client or the personal representative or assignee of the client, to anyone other than one or more surviving owners or new owners of the firm of the accountant. All statements, records, schedules, working papers, or memoranda prepared by a certified public accountant or public accountant in the performance of a practice monitoring program or peer review, conducted by the board shall be and become the property of the board immediately upon preparation or compilation, and shall be remitted to the board promptly upon completion of the review. The board may retain, archive, or destroy all or any portion of same. The information shall be deemed confidential. Notwithstanding the foregoing, nothing in this section shall be construed as prohibiting the disclosure of information required to be disclosed by the standards of the public accounting profession in effect from time to time with respect to reporting on the examination of financial statements or as prohibiting the disclosure in court proceedings, in investigations or proceedings conducted by the board or the designees of the board, or in ethical investigations conducted by private professional organizations. In addition, nothing in this section shall be construed as prohibiting any temporary transfer of workpapers or other material necessary in the course of carrying out peer reviews.

Terms Used In Alabama Code 34-1-21

(b) A licensee shall furnish to a client or former client, upon request and reasonable notice:

(1) A copy of the licensee’s working papers, to the extent that such working papers include records that would ordinarily constitute part of the client’s records and are not otherwise available to the client.

(2) Any accounting or other records belonging to, or obtained from or on behalf of, the client that the licensee removed from the client’s premises or received for the client’s account; the licensee may make and retain copies of such documents of the client when they form the basis for work done by the licensee.

(Acts 1973, No. 997, p. 1510, §20; Acts 1995, No. 95-516, p. 1038, §1; Act 2003-393, p. 1114, §1.)