Who owns my account?

If you're reading this, you're probably wondering who owns a particular Cheqbook account?

Technically, it's always going to be the original subscriber, someone we refer to as the primary user.  This is true whether it was setup by a company owner or the company's accountant.  The primary user owns those books and only they can transfer them - we cannot do so without their permission.

In some circumstance this makes immediate sense.  For example if a company owner sets up their books and invites their accountant or employee, obviously the company owner is the primary user and owns the set of books.

However if the accountant, who may work for one company or several, sets up the company then THEY own the set of books - even if it's not their company!

Why?  Well technically this is a data depository, where the person who created and owns the depository has full control.  Whether they're storing their own data or someone else's doesn't matter.  For the accountant Cheqbook is their "workpapers", just like a file in their office with a client's data.  If the client and accountant cease working with one another the accountant retains those workpapers to justify their positions and work done, usually for at least 7 years.

For an company owner faced with the issue of their books being owned by their accountant and wants to change that situation we have a few suggestions:

  • Ask the accountant to transfer the ownership to you.  In many cases the accountant will do so after they print or retain reports necessary for their files (although they do not have to).  If this is acceptable, it's probably the easiest solution.  Once agreed reach out to us for transferring, there may be a fee for this service.
  • If the accountant is not cooperative, and you wish to end their access to your data you can change the passwords on the bank access.  This will prevent new data from downloading.  Note: although it's apparently done all the time we NEVER recommend giving your bank log-in ID and passwords to your accountant.  Any user with full access (you in this scenario) can add and re-authenticate linked bank accounts, so presumably you did this for them when they created the books.
  • If you were not able to get the accountant to transfer books, you will have to setup a new Cheqbook account for your company.  This time you should retain ownership, and invite your new accountant to your books instead of relying upon them.

There is also the possibility that the books can be duplicated.  However transfers and duplications are not included in our regular service fee.  Duplicates in particular are highly difficult and take careful developer time to perform.  In the future we hope to offer easier transfers, but they're not available at this time.  Reach out if you need these services and we can make the arrangements and provide a quote for this service.



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