In November 2018, the CAA published the autumn newsletter and it included information about the renewal process for March 2019 and the updated details of the online training. The ATOL portal is now open for the March 2019 renewals and no doubt ATOL Reporting Accountants will now have commenced filing their AAR1 and AAR2 forms on the portal. We have found there are still some unresolved issues with the portal, but the CAA department responsible for the functioning is proving to be responsive. It is worth contacting them if you have any problems with the portal. To see more information click following link : http://www.caa.co.uk/ATOL-Online.aspx
The changes that were made to the ATOL regulations mid 2018 have necessitated the update of the online training modules. The CAA have not made is obligatory to retake this online training module if Accountable persons "AP" and ATOL reporting accountants "ARA" have already taken and passed the original test. However, as it is a requirement to maintain your technical competence in the ICAEW Licensed Practice Handbook as an ARA, it would be of benefit to complete this course to ensure you continue to be updated on your role and responsibility. There are some quite substantial changes to the ATOL regulations and therefore it is potentially a valuable piece of CPD. It is a good idea to keep all audit and accounting staff have involvement with tour operators appraised of the changes, not just the ARA. The original training module for ARA's was based on the training module produced for AP's, with modifications that concentrated more heavily on the financial aspects of the ATOL reporting and less on the day to day administration for AP's within tour operators. Currently the CAA have not released a specific training module for ARA's, but expect the them to produce one in the not too distant future.
The ICAEW have released an ATOL cold file review checklist and this will be a potentially useful tool is performing the requisite annual cold file reviews of ATOL engagements. You need to complete as part of the annual compliance review. You may as a firm have created your own ATOL cold file review checklist, but it is worth ensuring that this has been updated in accordance with the 2018 changes.