The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board released a YouTube video Monday discussing how to comment on its recent concept release on potentially revising quality control standards for audit firms.

The concept release, published last month, asks for public comment to tell the PCAOB about what kinds of changes it should propose in the future to strengthen its requirements for audit firms' quality control systems. The changes would represent the biggest changes since the PCAOB adopted the current quality control standards in after the board was established by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act ofin the wake of accounting scandals like Enron and WorldCom. However, the auditing environment has changed a great deal since that time, especially with more widespread adoption of technology to automate the audit process and use of data analytics.

Comments can be emailed to comments pcaobus. The PCAOB believes that requiring firms to establish effective systems of quality control is foundational to promoting consistent performance of high-quality audits to help prevent, detect and ameliorate deficiencies, but the auditing environment has changed considerably since the existing quality control standards were created 17 years ago see PCAOB proposes changes in quality control standards.

There have been considerable changes in auditing technology and firm governance and leadership since that time. Due to the foundational nature of QC systems, we believe that it would not be practical to require firms to comply with fundamentally different quality control standards.

The PCAOB is hoping to avoid unnecessary differences between its standard and the international standard, but anticipates there probably will be some minor incremental or alternative requirements.

Comments on the proposal can be long or short, and commenters can respond to some or all of the questions in the concept release.

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Lost Horizon; crimes of Misdemeanor; Strachans plea; and other highlights of recent tax cases. By Jeff Stimpson. Coronavirus worries corporate audit committees. IRS changes procedure for reporting tax shelters. PCAOB previews latest inspection findings of audit firms.

The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board released a preview Thursday from its staff about its findings from inspections of audit firms last year ahead of the issuance of its inspection reports.But there may be a silver lining: compliance with more specific QC standards may provide firms more concrete guidance compared to the current standards. The December concept release does not propose any specific rules. Some notable changes with potential impact on enforcement actions may include the following:.

The release is unclear about what specific changes are proposed. Increased engagement monitoring under the proposed QC standards could lead to more instances where engagement teams find themselves applying ASand firms should consider commenting on the specifics of any proposed change. The current QC standards are general, high-level principles that leave considerable room for interpretation.

Implementing more precise standards may be a positive development in that such standards could provide firms with clear guidelines for compliance.

Nevertheless, more stringent requirements for firms to proactively identify audit quality risks through their QC apparatus may lead to an increased focus on firm QC systems in enforcement actions.

Public Company Accounting Oversight Board

Just as the audit standards recognize that well-performed audits may not discover all material misstatements, so too should there be recognition that reasonable QC procedures will not detect or prevent all audit deficiencies. Baker Botts is an international law firm of approximately lawyers practicing throughout a network of 14 offices around the globe.

Based on our experience and knowledge of our clients' industries, we are recognized as a leading firm in the energy and technology sectors. Sincewe have provided creative and effective legal solutions for our clients while demonstrating an unrelenting commitment to excellence. For more information, please visit bakerbotts. Thought Leadership. The proposed changes would require the firm to conduct performance evaluations to determine if the individuals are exercising effective oversight.

This may leave these individuals more exposed than previously in the enforcement context. Currently, isolated substantive audit deficiencies on their own do not regularly underpin charges against firms for violations of QC standards.

Most recent cases involving a QC violation instead involve either 1 firm leadership awareness of some misconduct, especially the improper alteration of workpapers, or 2 a failure of personnel monitoring duties such as monitoring partner performance, partner rotation or independence requirements.

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Under the proposed rules, however, firms may find themselves faced with questions probing whether an isolated substantive audit deficiency is indicative of a failure by the firm — not just individual engagement team members — to identify and respond to audit quality risks. Learning from past mistakes through an internal review process can lead to future improvement in professional services. In the medical profession, so-called mortality and morbidity conferences allow professionals to examine past mistakes, but in a privileged setting.

No such privilege exists for retrospective examinations of audit work absent communications covered by the attorney-client privilege or privileges applying in anticipation of litigation. Indeed, internal inspection findings have been cited in past disciplinary orders.

Most large firms are nevertheless already conducting such monitoring programs. There is still substantial judgment involved, however, in how these programs are designed and executed.

pcaob proposed standards

To the extent that judgment is replaced with more specific requirements, in the enforcement setting, firms could find themselves more often defending not only a specific audit, but also the application of monitoring procedures to that audit. A correlation between a busy audit and a later-discovered deficiency could be mistaken as a causal relationship in the enforcement setting.

Firms may find themselves defending such reports if later enforcement proceedings suggest QC shortcomings beyond those disclosed in the reports. View Related Professionals.The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board has issued a concept release proposing a new approach to changing its quality control standards.

The changes would represent the biggest changes since the PCAOB adopted the current quality control standards in after the board was established by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act ofin the wake of accounting scandals like Enron and WorldCom. However, the auditing environment has changed a great deal since that time, especially with more widespread adoption of technology to automate the audit process and use of data analytics. When firms effectively design and operate their quality control systems, those systems promote more consistent compliance with our standards and thereby benefit investors.

The PCAOB is asking for public comments to help it determine what approach it should take in the future to improve the quality control systems at auditing firms. The PCAOB is also considering the use of a recently proposed quality control standard from the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board, known as International Standard on Quality Management 1, as a starting point for its own future quality control standard.

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pcaob proposed standards

Close extra sharing options. Michael Cohn. Editor-in-chief, AccountingToday. For reprint and licensing requests for this article, click here. Paycheck Protection Program. The U. By Michael Cohn. Career moves. By Danielle Lee.

PCAOB Professional Standards & Rulemaking

Tax-related court cases. Tax Fraud Blotter: Brazen attempts. Lost Horizon; crimes of Misdemeanor; Strachans plea; and other highlights of recent tax cases. By Jeff Stimpson. Coronavirus worries corporate audit committees.

pcaob proposed standards

IRS changes procedure for reporting tax shelters. PCAOB previews latest inspection findings of audit firms. The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board released a preview Thursday from its staff about its findings from inspections of audit firms last year ahead of the issuance of its inspection reports.Changes proposed include:.

The PCAOB also proposed a new standard which applies when the lead auditor divides responsibility for the audit with, and makes reference in the audit report to, another auditor referred-to auditor. The proposed new standard would retain, with modifications, many of the requirements of the current standard, but include new requirements that a lead auditor:. Many companies have significant operations around the world. When auditing a multinational company, a lead auditor often needs participation of other auditors to complete the audit.

As a result, the proposal may impact these audits and the efforts related to the lead auditor supervising the other auditors. PwC clients who have questions about this In brief should contact their engagement partner. Engagement teams who have questions should contact the National Professional Services Group PwC's accounting podcast covers today's most compelling accounting issues, regulatory updates and financial reporting hot topics.

Browse our CFOdirect library of videos addressing topics ranging from the latest developments in accounting and reporting to back to basics concepts. Browse our library for insights on a broad array of topics including trust, quality and innovation and the audit. PwC's in-depth accounting guidance for topics of significant interest.

David Schmid. All rights reserved. PwC refers to the US member firm or one of its subsidiaries or affiliates, and may sometimes refer to the PwC network. Each member firm is a separate legal entity. Please see www. Authored by. What happened? Making clear that, to act as lead auditor, an audit firm must itself audit a meaningful portion of the financial statements. The lead auditor ordinarily would need to audit the location at which the primary financial reporting decisions were made and the consolidated financial statements were prepared in order to address the risks related to those important judgments and activities, and a sufficient number of other locations to cover a greater portion of the risks on the audit than any other audit firm.

This includes audit documentation required to be retained today, but also additional items the lead auditor determines is needed to meet the requirements. For example, the lead auditor may request additional information for review with respect to the work performed by less experienced auditors, or with respect to an area of heightened risk of material misstatement.

Inform the other auditor of the scope of work to be performed by them.

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Require the engagement quality reviewer to evaluate the engagement partner's determination of a firm's eligibility to serve as lead auditor. New auditing standard related to divided responsibility The PCAOB also proposed a new standard which applies when the lead auditor divides responsibility for the audit with, and makes reference in the audit report to, another auditor referred-to auditor. The proposed new standard would retain, with modifications, many of the requirements of the current standard, but include new requirements that a lead auditor: Obtain a representation that the referred-to auditor is appropriately licensed.

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Why is this important? What's next? Comments on the proposal are due on July 29, The PCAOB is required to establish or adopt, or both, auditing, quality control, ethics, independence, and other standards relating to the preparation of audit reports for public companies, in accordance with Section of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of The SEC's approval process also typically involves a public comment period. The SAG is composed of highly qualified persons representing the auditing profession, public companies, investors and others.

A ccess SAG meeting summaries and meeting materials at the respective link. The IAG provides high-level advice and insight on matters the Board may face in fulfilling its mission to protect investors. Access IAG meeting summaries and related meeting materials at the respective link.

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PCAOB seeks feedback on changes in quality control standard for auditors

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10 Generally Accepted Auditing Standards (GAAS)

Only official editions of the Federal Register provide legal notice to the public and judicial notice to the courts under 44 U. Learn more here. On December 20,the Board adopted amendments to auditing standards for using the work of specialists. The Proposed Rules would be effective for audits of financial statements for fiscal years ending on or after December 15, The comment period on the Proposed Rules ended on April 25, We received four comment letters from accounting firms, an investor association, and an issuer organization.

The Sarbanes-Oxley Act requires us to determine whether the Proposed Rules are consistent with the requirements of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act and the securities laws or are necessary or appropriate in the public interest or for the protection of investors.

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