This answer assumes you are preparing financial statements in conjunction with a tax return and that those financial statements are issued separately—apart from the tax return—to your client. Accountants often create financial statements as a part of a tax return.
The firm was hired to perform write-up services by a managing agent who committed the fraud. Without an engagement letter, the firm was unable to convince the court that the firm was not engaged to audit the financial statements.
To do so they must have a written understanding engagement letter with their client and include a legend on each page of the financial statement stating that no assurance is provided.
The Tenants case illustrates the importance of following up on unusual findings regardless of the level of service. Also integral to the Tenants decision was that the services were not delineated in an engagement letter.
CPAs should be forewarned and learn from this. Without an engagement letter clearly indicating that the contemplated services do NOT include the audit, review, compilation or preparation of financial statements, clients might successfully allege the accountant was to have reported on or prepared financial statements.
Claiming that the engagement letter would have detailed that a financial statement reporting or preparation service was to be performed may be an inadequate defense, as CPAs are generally expected by average individuals e. Instead, the examples could suggest and likely do suggest that the entity whose financial statements are presented provides no assurance.
However, some CPAs have expressed their intent to include their firm name in financial statement legends as part of their marketing strategy. Having your name associated with financial statements suggests to some that the financial statements may be more reliable than identical financial statements omitting any reference to a CPA.
Presumably what would prompt the need for a disclaimer would be if the computer software used to print the financial statements could not accommodate a suitable footer.
The number of required characters expands when an entity opts for a reporting framework other than U. GAAP and when management elects to omit substantially all disclosures.
Some software providers permit only a limited number of characters in their footers, headers and titles.
To avoid the additional risk exposure of having your name unnecessarily associated with financial statements, CAMICO encourages practitioners to print preparation engagement financial statements on paper stock pre-printed with footers containing their preferred legend; e.
In such an instance the statute of limitations could be held open indefinitely. How to address this is a decision your firm must make. Sample addendums can be accessed below: However, often clients that initially request bookkeeping and financial statement preparation services later request an audit or review of their financial statements.
If precautions are not taken, the implications of Interpretation Performance of Nonattest Servicesv may preclude the CPA from performing the desired attest services. When considering whether circumstances impair their independence, CPAs have long considered potential threats in isolation.
Preparing financial statements is a typical nonattest service performed when engaged to audit or review financial statements, and when initially engaged to perform these attest services, the CPA anticipates conforming to Interpretation When not so engaged, CPAs should still consider whether to take steps to avoid impairing their independence.
Modifying engagement letters to include anticipated report language would be desirable when an anticipated deviation from the standard reporting language is contemplated for going concern issues or other financial statement matters the accountant believes should be emphasized i.
That decision is up to your firm and your clients. CPAs should study the new standard and become familiar with its requirements before meeting with clients to introduce them to the clarified review and compilation standards and the new preparation of financial statements service.
In such cases, the accountant would have been required to read the financial statements in order to identify material misstatements, and if dissatisfied, request that management revise the financial statements, as appropriate.
The proposed SSARS would have applied regardless of whether the accountant prepared the financial statements.
Also, the ARSC chose to distinguish compilation reports from those for audits and reviews by altering the standard report to be one paragraph with no headings.
There is no title required for compilation reports, and adding a title would defeat the objective of making compilation reports appear dramatically different from assurance engagements. However, additional paragraphs would be required whenever: If currently subject to peer review, and the highest level of service your firm performs is the preparation engagement, you can opt out of peer review.
However, if you should later accept an engagement that would subject your firm to peer review, the date by which your peer review must be performed will be accelerated.
As such, the ARSC is in the process of reviewing these standards and expects shortly to expose a draft standard addressing prospective financial statements i.
B. SSARS NO. 19, COMPILATION AND REVIEW ENGAGEMENTS Compilation Reports on Financial Statements Included in Certain Prescribed Forms No change SSARS No. 4 AR Communications Between Predecessor and Successor Accountants Practice Issues: Compilation and Review. AR-C and.A1 and new paragraphs AR-C leslutinsduphoenix.com2 which are financial statements, practitioners may add language such as the following to the other PPC products released prior to the issuance of SSARS 23): Compilation Reports—If the compiled financial statements . The marijuana industry is a prime example of a “current, emerging and future” risk area, given the number of perplexing difficulties CPAs face when trying to assess the special considerations pertaining to marijuana business clients and to the CPA firms that service such clients. At the heart of the difficulties is the split between federal law, under which marijuana is basically illegal.
Initial impressions of these discussions suggest significant changes in this arena, as the ARSC appears to wish to fit much of the prospective financial statement services within the newly introduced preparation framework.
If your firm practices or is thinking about practicing in this arena, please consider reading and commenting upon the exposure draft once it is released. Those exceptions occur when the financial statements are 1 to be included in personal financial plans, 2 in conjunction with litigation services, 3 in conjunction with business valuation services, and 4 solely for submission to taxing authorities.
Accountants should read and understand the full text of the new section and have thorough discussions with their clients to ensure clients understand: Bankers have long been prohibited from receiving management-use-only financial statements.A bright line in SSARSs The accountant’s review report will look different as SSARS No.
21 requires the use of headings in the accountant’s review report. The accountant is also required to name the city and state of the issuing office. Developments in Review, Compilation, and Financial Statement Preparation Engagements. This statement recodifies and supersedes all outstanding SSARSs through No.
20, except SSARS No. 14, Compilation of Pro Forma Financial Information.
SSARS No. 21 is effective for reviews, compilations, and engagements to prepare financial statements for periods ending on or after December 15, but early implementation is permitted.
Compilation and Review Standards (8 CPE credits). This course walks through the entire compilation and review codification by SSARS 21 as amended by SSARS 23, Omnibus Statement on Standards for Accounting and Review Services followed by SSARS 22, Compilation of Pro Forma Financial .
SSARS no. 6, Reporting on Personal Financial Statements Included in Written Personal Financial Plans, exempts personal financial statements included in written plans.
After the hearing, ARSC decided not to amend SSARS no. 1 to provide for a level of service below a compilation but decided instead to draft guidance on whether the services. Source: SSARS No. 19 with governance,regarding a compilation of financial statements should in- should include a reference,such as "See accountant's compilation report" or "Seeindependentaccountant'scompilationreport." Financial statements prepared in accordance with an other compre-.
May 01, · SSARS 21 provides CPAs the opportunity to prepare financial statements without the burden of submitting a compilation report. The standard is designed to be a better fit for accountants using electronic or cloud-based services with clients, or firms that may work with clients remotely.