Financial Accountability Handbook

The Financial Accountability Handbook (the Handbook) has been designed to assist accountable officers and statutory bodies discharge their obligations under the Financial Accountability Act 2009 (the Act), the Financial and Performance Management Standard 2019 (the Standard), and the Financial Accountability Regulation 2019 (the Regulation).

Sections 7(4), 11(3) and 32(3) of the Standard state that accountable officers and statutory bodies must have regard to the Financial Accountability Handbook published by the treasury department when establishing and maintaining their internal control structure, resource management system, and contract performance guarantee system. This means that agencies must comply with the contents of the Handbook when they apply to agency circumstances.

Agencies are encouraged to advise Treasury of any improvements to the contents of the Handbook for processes that may benefit other agencies in meeting their obligations under the current financial framework. Any feedback or suggestions should be emailed to

The Handbook consists of six volumes. An Index to the Handbook (PDF 70 K) is provided to assist with navigation between the volumes.

Individual volumes

Volume 1: Introduction
Volume 1 discusses the principles underlying the Act and its subordinate legislation, its general purpose and scope, the framework within which it has been developed and its application to the various forms of government entities.

Volume 2: Governance
Volume 2 discusses the application of fundamental governance requirements, including the implementation and review of systems of internal controls, agency management, internal and external audit and risk management.

Volume 3: Designing internal controls
Volume 3 provides guidance to agencies on the fundamental elements supporting the design and implementation of internal control systems.

Volume 4: Monitoring/assessment
Volume 4 discusses the range of monitoring and assessment processes, tools and reports that should be employed in assessing an agency’s performance in the delivery of its services, the effectiveness of outsourcing arrangements, machinery-of-Government changes and consideration of internal/external audit findings.

Volume 5: Reporting systems
Volume 5 details reporting obligations under the Act and its subordinate legislation, the roles of internal and external audit functions in the reporting process and guidance on the development and production of effective management reports for use by agency management.

Volume 6: Grant management
The objective of Volume 6 is to achieve a whole-of-Government approach to grant program development and administration while maintaining some flexibility to suit an individual agency’s specific grant program requirements.

summary of changes to the information sheets (PDF 220 K) provides an overview of any changes made to the Financial Accountability Handbook along with the dates of the updates.

The financial management tools contain a number of examples and consideration points to assist agencies in assessing their obligations under the current financial legislation and Financial Accountability Handbook.

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