AICPA Describes Transition to New Regulatory Framework

The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) has e-mailed an alert to its members, advising them of its plans for transitioning to the new regulatory framework established by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002.

As part of its transition plan, AICPA will:

  • Work with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to establish an orderly transition of the activities of AICPA's SEC practice section.

  • Work with the public accountability board or the SEC to help them understand the importance of auditors providing tax services for publicly held audit clients.

  • Work with the state societies to closely monitor the "cascade effect," (i.e., further developments that may occur as a result of state or regulatory actions building on the Sarbanes-Oxley Act).

  • Continue all its standard-setting work, including issuance of a new standard on fraud.

  • Continue to encourage the Financial Accounting Standards Board to address the meaningfulness of the financial reporting model and related disclosures.

  • Provide a toll-free number (866-265-1977) to answer questions from members and their firms about the new legislation. The number is available weekdays. No e-mail address was provided.

The e-mail also summarized the provisions that will most affect the accounting profession and described AICPA's efforts to lead the profession through what it described as a "turbulent environment." It explained, "We have walked a difficult road these past few months, determined to do the right thing by the public and by the honorable men and women in this profession. . . Unfortunately, the media, political and legislative fervor have frequently drowned out our simple and unshakeable message."

The AICPA takes credit for advocating several reforms that were incorporated into the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, most notably the creation of a new oversight board and the steering of the regulatory framework away from public oversight toward public participation.

Read AICPA's analysis of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.

-Rosemary Schlank

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