Proposal would align AU-C 800 series with SAS No. 134

By Ken Tysiac

A proposal issued Wednesday by the AICPA Auditing Standards Board (ASB) is designed to align three sections of the clarified auditing standards with the new auditor reporting standard the board issued earlier this year.

In May, the ASB issued Statement on Auditing Standards (SAS) No. 134, Auditor Reporting and Amendments, Including Amendments Addressing Disclosures in the Audit of Financial Statements. The standard is designed to enhance the communicative value of auditors’ reports on the financial statements of nonissuers by updating the form and content of the reports.

On Wednesday, the ASB issued Proposed SAS, Amendments to AU-C Sections 800, 805, and 810 to Incorporate Auditor Reporting Changes From SAS No. 134. The proposal is designed to align the following AU-C sections with the changes in auditor reporting introduced by SAS No. 134 and other recently issued standards:

  • AU-C Section 800, Special Considerations — Audits of Financial Statements Prepared in Accordance With Special Purpose Frameworks.
  • AU-C Section 805, Special Considerations — Audits of Single Financial Statements and Specific Elements, Accounts, or Items of a Financial Statement.
  • AU-C Section 810, Engagements to Report on Summary Financial Statements.

“As we continue to enhance the transparency of auditor reporting, we have extended the provisions of SAS No. 134 as they relate to providing insight into the basis for the auditor’s opinion,” AICPA Chief Auditor Bob Dohrer, CPA, CGMA, said in a news release. “Disclosure of the responsibilities of both entity management and auditors in these unique reporting circumstances is also important.”

Most of the generally accepted auditing standards address:

  • Audits of financial statements prepared in accordance with GAAP, and
  • Audits of a full set of financial statements, which includes a balance sheet, statement of income, statement of changes in stockholders’ equity, and statement of cash flows.

The AU-C 800 series of auditing standards are exceptions to these two conventions. For example,

  • AU-C Section 800 addresses audits of financial statements prepared in accordance with a special-purpose framework, which is a framework other than GAAP, for example, the cash basis of accounting or the tax basis of accounting.
  • AU-C Section 805 addresses audits of something less than a full set of financial statements, for example, a single financial statement such as a balance sheet, or an element of a financial statement such as the account inventory.
  • AU-C Section 810 addresses audits of summary financial statements that are derived from financial statements audited in accordance with generally accepted auditing standards. Summary financial statements contain less detail than the financial statements from which they are derived.

The new proposal is designed to align the AU-C 800 series with SAS No. 134.

Comments on the proposal can be submitted to Sharon Macey at Sharon.Macey@aicpa-cima.com by Oct. 28.

Ken Tysiac (Kenneth.Tysiac@aicpa-cima.com) is the JofA’s editorial director.

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