State says Warren accountant falsely bills herself as CPA

By Stephen Betts, BDN Staff
Posted Dec. 04, 2013, at 6:39 p.m.

WARREN, Maine — The state has issued a warning to the public about an accountant who it maintains is falsely calling herself a certified public accountant.

The accountant, Valerie Alex, acknowledged Wednesday that she has failed to remove an office sign and take down her website, which identify her as a CPA, but she said she has not been doing any work that requires such certification.

A news release issued Wednesday afternoon by Anne Head, commissioner of the Maine Department of Professional and Financial Regulation, stated that Alex has not had a license to practice as a certified public accountant in Maine since 2010. Further, the release indicated that her certificate to practice as a CPA was revoked more than a year ago by the Maine Board of Accountancy.

In a Sept. 19, 2012 order, the board found Alex had been holding herself out to the public as a CPA long after the expiration of both her individual and firm certified public accounting licenses, the state maintains in the news release. The order also found that Alex had failed to comply with a prior board order, issued in February 2012, resulting from her failure to properly file an income tax return, failure to follow-up with the IRS to resolve that matter, and failure to provide documents requested of her by the Maine attorney general’s office, according to the state.

In the September order, Alex was ordered to remove her office signage in Warren and to shut down her website, valeriealexcpa.com.

Alex said Wednesday that she had been out of town during November, but she plans to take down the sign and the website. She also stated that she only has been doing tax returns for clients, which she is allowed to do as an accountant, and has not been doing any work as a CPA.

At a November 2013 meeting of the Maine Board of Accountancy, the panel decided to refer the matter to the Maine attorney general’s office for further enforcement action.

Consumers can check the license status of accountants and licensees in nearly 40 other professions by visiting maine.gov/pfr. The direct link to list of professions is maine.gov/pfr/professionallicensing/professions.htm.

http://bangordailynews.com/2013/12/04/news/midcoast/state-says-warren-accountant-falsely-bills-herself-as-cpa/ printed on July 31, 2014