PCAOB solicits additional public comment on proposed new requirements for lead auditor’s use of other auditors

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Sep 28, 2021

On September 28, 2021, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) issued a second supplemental request for comment(PDF) on its proposal to strengthen requirements that apply to audits involving multiple audit firms. Comment are requested by November 30, 2021.

In many audits, the lead auditor issues the auditor’s report, but other auditors perform important audit work to assist the lead auditor in obtaining sufficient appropriate audit evidence in support of the lead auditor’s opinion(s). The roles of other auditors have become more significant and have evolved as companies’ global operations have grown.

Working with other auditors can differ from working with people in the same audit firm, creating challenges in coordination and communication. These challenges can lead to misunderstandings about the nature, timing, and extent of the other auditors’ work and can detract from the quality of the audit.

To address the challenges of working with other auditors, the PCAOB previously issued a proposal to strengthen requirements regarding a lead auditor’s responsibilities for planning, supervising, and evaluating the work of other auditors. The stated aim of the proposal has been to increase the lead auditor’s supervision of the work of other auditors and to enhance the lead auditor’s ability to prevent or detect deficiencies in the other auditors’ work.

Since it last solicited public comment on this proposal in 2017, the PCAOB has continued to review the work performed in audits that involve other auditors and to engage with stakeholders and other auditing standard setters in this area. Today’s proposed amendments are intended to (1) adjust certain requirements to better take into account the lead auditor’s role in the audit and (2) improve the readability and usability of the amendments and facilitate their implementation.

Review the press release and publication on the PCAOB's website.

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