SOX Update: Sarbanes-Oxley Issues

PCAOB issues staff Q & A, extends deadlines, tackles tax services


By Andi McNeal, CFE, CPA

This column is the first in a new series designed to keep our members updated on all things Sarbanes-Oxley. Due to the extreme significance and pervasiveness of the Act's provisions, keeping abreast of the recent and impending developments that stem from the original promulgation can be a daunting task. Nonetheless, the far-reaching nature of SOX means that the importance of these unfolding events shouldn't be underestimated. Thus, we hope this column serves to help readers remain informed about prominent issues and major developments related to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.  

PCAOB issues staff questions and answers
The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) has issued three sets of Staff Questions and Answers to provide additional guidance to auditors on performing audits of internal controls over financial reporting as required by PCAOB Auditing Standard No. 2. The first set of questions, issued June 23, 2004 and revised July 27, 2004, addresses several broad topics including auditor independence, the scope and extent of audit testing, and evaluating deficiencies. The second set, issued October 6, 2004, also addresses questions regarding the scope and extent of testing and evaluating deficiencies.

Additionally, the second issuance discusses specific matters related to the performance of audits of internal controls over financial reporting for service organizations. The third series of questions, issued Nov. 22, 2004, discusses the auditors' use of the work of others in conducting an audit of internal control over financial reporting and provides further guidance on the scope and extent of testing and evaluating deficiencies.


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