The International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board released an update on its work to improve the clarity of its standards. The seven-page Clarity Project Update details the status of the 18-month program, which is slated for completion in December. The report also provides an overview of the main changes to the International Standards on Auditing (ISAs) resulting from the clarity project and highlights some of the issues to be considered as jurisdictions implement the clarified standards.
The standards board is reviewing all ISAs and International Standards on Quality Control (ISQCs) to improve their clarity, with the goal of driving more consistent application. The standards approved in December are scheduled to be submitted to the Public Interest Oversight Board in February and, if cleared by the PIOB, the project will be completed then. The program will result in 36 ISAs drafted in accordance with the IAASB’s clarity conventions subject to a single statement of authority, which will be effective for audits of financial statements for periods beginning on or after Dec. 15, 2009.
The AICPA’s Auditing Standards Board is working on a similar clarity project, through which all of its auditing standards will be redrafted over the next two to three years. The goal of the clarity project is to make auditing standards easier to read, understand and apply. Consistent with the ASB’s strategy to converge its standards with those of the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board, each proposed standard has been redrafted using the corresponding International Standards on Auditing (ISA) as the basis.
The ASB this summer issued a final clarified Statement on Auditing Standards (SAS), The Auditor’s Communication With Those Charged With Governance (Redrafted), which is not yet effective. All clarified SASs will have the same effective date. Upon the issuance of all clarified SASs, one SAS will be issued containing all clarified SASs in codified format. More recently, the ASB released, among other proposals, a proposed SAS that would supersede, among others, SAS no. 95, as amended, which contains the general, field work and reporting standards, commonly known as the 10 standards. Comments on that proposal are due Dec. 30.