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Clarified Auditing Standards: Written Representations – Part 1

Sep 10th 2015
CPA Firm Support Services, LLC
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Audit evidence is the information used by the auditor in arriving at the conclusions on which the auditor's opinion is based. Written representations contain necessary information that the auditor requires in connection with the audit of the entity's financial statements. Similar to responses to inquiries, written representations are audit evidence.

Written representations provide necessary audit evidence, complement other auditing procedures, and do not provide sufficient appropriate audit evidence on their own about any of the matters with which they deal. They do not affect the nature or extent of other audit procedures that the auditor applies to obtain audit evidence about the fulfillment of management's responsibilities or about specific assertions.

It is normally appropriate for both the CEO and the chairperson of the board of governance to sign the management representation letter.

Objectives of the Auditor
The auditor should obtain written representations from management (those charged with governance when appropriate) that they believe that they have fulfilled their responsibilities:

  • For the preparation and fair presentation of the financial statements, and for the completeness of the information provided to the auditor.
  • To support other audit evidence relevant to the financial statements or specific assertions in the financial statements by means of written representations, if determined necessary by the auditor or required by other AU-C sections.
  • To respond appropriately to written representations provided by management.
  • To respond appropriately if management does not provide the written representations requested by the auditor.

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