A new AICPA Auditing Standards Board (ASB) attestation interpretation provides guidance for third-party due-diligence services performed as agreed-upon procedures engagements related to asset-backed securitizations, as defined in SEC Release No. 34-72936, Nationally Recognized Statistical Rating Organizations.
The issuance is the first attestation interpretation of AT Section 201, Agreed-Upon Procedures Engagements. The SEC release becomes effective for securitization transactions occurring on or after June 15, 2015.
The SEC release acknowledges that certain procedures often performed by practitioners as agreed-upon procedures engagements related to asset-backed securitizations are considered third-party due-diligence services as defined in the release.
The ASB interpretation addresses:
- The distribution of procedures or findings, or both, under AT Section 201 when due-diligence services in SEC Form ABS Due Diligence-15E and SEC Form ABS-15G, as applicable, are performed as an agreed-upon procedures engagement.
- The practitioner’s Form ABS Due Diligence-15E responsibilities.
- How the practitioner might modify the illustrative report wording in AT Section 201 to clarify the requirements and limitations of agreed-upon procedures engagements and reports as it relates to due-diligence services.
Notably, the distribution of the procedures or findings, or both, of the practitioner’s due-diligence services in the Form ABS Due Diligence-15E or Form ABS-15G is not prohibited because the distribution of that information is required by regulation to be made available to the public.