PCAOB Issues Proposal for Reorganizing Auditing Standards Topical Structure

By Frank Byrt

On March 26, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) announced it is proposing a framework for reorganizing the existing interim and PCAOB-issued auditing standards into a topical structure with a single integrated numbering system.
The proposed reorganization is intended to present the standards in a logical order that generally follows the flow of an audit, which should help auditors navigate the standards more easily. 
The change would involve reordering and renumbering existing standards in their entirety, without redrafting the auditing standards or making substantive changes to the requirements of the standards.
"This proposed reorganization is intended to help users navigate the standards more easily," said PCAOB Chairman James R. Doty. "It is just the first step. The PCAOB also intends to explore additional steps and undertake additional projects to enhance the organizational structure of PCAOB standards."
The PCAOB is seeking public comment on the proposal with a deadline of May 28, 2013. 
Under the proposed framework, the audit topics will be grouped into the following categories: 
  • General Auditing Standards – Standards on broad auditing principles, concepts, activities, and communications.
  • Audit Procedures – Standards for planning and performing audit procedures and obtaining audit evidence. 
  • Auditor Reporting – Standards for auditors' reports.
  • Matters Relating to Filings under Federal Securities Laws – Standards on certain auditor responsibilities relating to SEC filings for securities offerings and reviews of interim financial information 
  • Other Matters Associated with Audits – Standards for other work performed in conjunction with an audit of an issuer, broker, or dealer.
In addition, the PCAOB is proposing certain conforming amendments to Rule 3101, Certain Terms Used in Auditing and Related Professional Practice Standards, and Rule 3200T, Interim Auditing Standards. The PCAOB also is proposing to rescind certain interim auditing standards the board believes are no longer necessary under the proposed reorganization.

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