Deontology and Accounting Ethics

2831 words 12 pages
Deontology and Accounting Ethics

Amanda Dunn

Liberty University



1 Ethical Systems Description

1 Deontological

2 Utilitarian

2 Ethical Systems Evaluation

1 Organizational Culture of Accounting

2 AICPA Professional Code of Conduct

3 Utilization of a Deontological System


Introduction No man can be certain beyond a shadow of a doubt how he will react in any given situation. One can know how he would hope to react; however, until the circumstances are in place behavior can not be entirely predicted. A person’s reaction in the direst of moments is in fact the heart of who they are. While reactions are spontaneous, actions are not and the decisions to act or not to act
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Among these characteristics in the organizational structure of accounting are objectivity, integrity, and independence. In order to distinguish a particular ethical system as superior within the accounting profession, it must uphold the characteristics of the profession itself. A deontological system is able to support the objectivity characteristic of accounting. Objectivity requires the professional to deal with the given financial facts without alteration from personal feelings or interpretaions. Deontology allows this by requiring the adherance to a set of moral standards regardless of the outcome. Wustemann and Wustemann (2010) concluded for reasons of objectivity it is important to have specific (internally consistant) accounting reuqirements that limit management judgment in the aplication of accounting standards (p. 5). Standards can be consistantly applied and the net utility measurement employed by utlitarians disregarded. This disregard is necessary in order to maintain The application of a utilitarian ethic removes the objectivity from accounting. The motivation of an action based on a decision with regard to, quite literally, a benefit/harm analysis is in direct opposition to objectivity. A course of action taken to benefit a larger number in a more grandious manner than the potential harm to a smaller popluation can be viewed differently by different individuals. Within any given scenario, multiple groups can be affected by


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