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Code of Ethics

CIMA members and registered students throughout the world have a duty to observe the highest standards of conduct and integrity, and to uphold the good standing and reputation of the profession.

CIMA's Code of Ethics applies to all members and students.

View the Code of Ethics (PDF)

View the Code of Ethics at a glance

2020 updates to the Code of Ethics

The Code of Ethics has recently been updated, with the new version taking effect from 1st January 2020. 

Read about the recent changes made to the Code 

Introduction to the Code of Ethics

View a transcript of the animation 

Structure of the Code

Part 1 of the Code of Ethics lays out the conceptual framework and fundamental principles. Part 2 applies to professional accountants working in business, including all those holding the CGMA designation. Part 3 applies to professional accountants working in public practice. 

Annex 1 is comprised part 4a, Independence for audit and review engagements, and part 4b, Independence for assurance engagements other than audit and review engagements. For Annex 1 please refer directly to the full IFAC International Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants

The glossaries contains defined terms and additional explanations where appropriate. 

CIMA Code of Ethics preface

CIMA preface

As chartered management accountants, CIMA members (and registered students) throughout the world have a duty to observe the highest standards of conduct and integrity and to uphold the good standing and reputation of the profession. They must also refrain from any conduct which might discredit the profession. Members and registered students must have regard to these guidelines irrespective of their field of activity, of their contract of employment or of any other professional memberships they may hold.

CIMA upholds the aims and principles of equal opportunities and fundamental human rights worldwide, including the handling of personal information. The Institute promotes the highest ethical and business standards and encourages its members to be good and responsible professionals. Good ethical behaviour may be above that required by the law. In a highly competitive, complex business world, it is essential that CIMA members sustain their integrity and remember the trust and confidence that is placed on them by whoever relies on their objectivity and professionalism. Members must avoid actions or situations which are inconsistent with their professional obligations. They should also be guided not merely by the terms but by the spirit of this Code. 

CIMA members should conduct themselves with courtesy and consideration towards all with whom they have professional dealings and should not behave in a manner which could be considered offensive or discriminatory.

To ensure that CIMA members protect the good standing and reputation of the profession, members must report the fact to the Institute if they are convicted or disqualified from acting as an officer of a company or if they are subject to any sanction resulting from disciplinary action taken by any other body or authority.

CIMA has adopted the following Code of Ethics. Parts 1 and 3 of this Code are based on the IFAC[1] Code of Ethics that was developed with the help of input from CIMA and the global accountancy profession. Part 2 of the Code was developed in cooperation with the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA). The AICPA and CIMA joined together to create a designation for management accountants, the Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA). The CGMA designation is designed to elevate management accounting and further emphasise its importance for businesses worldwide. Part 2 of the Code is designed to provide guidance to all CIMA members around the world who are members in business and professional accountants in business and, those who hold the CGMA credential. When a CGMA is also a member in public practice the CGMA should also comply with the applicable guidance of the CIMA Code of Ethics and apply the most restrictive provisions.

If a member cannot resolve an ethical issue by following this Code by consulting the ethics information on CIMA’s website or by seeking guidance from CIMA’s ethics helpline, they should seek legal advice as to both their legal rights and any obligations they may have. The CIMA Charter, Byelaws and Regulations give definitive rules on many matters.

For further information view the ethics pages

Note: The CIMA Code of Ethics is a Law of the Institute (to which all members and registered students are required to comply) for the purpose of the definition of “misconduct” in Byelaw 1.



[1] International Federation of Accountants.

Parts 1 - 3 and Annex 1 of the CIMA Code of Ethics are based on the IFAC Handbook of the Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants, of the International Ethics Standards Board of Accountants (IESBA), published by IFAC in July 2018. Copy right © July 2018 by the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC). All rights reserved. Used with permission of IFAC Contact. Permissions@ifac.org for permission to reproduce, store or transmit, or to make similar uses of this document.

Previous versions of the Code of Ethics 

The Code of Ethics changed on 1 January 2020. The previous version can be accessed here (applied until 31 December 2019)