Changement important dans la relation auditeur externe/interne | Financial Reporting Council (FRC)

Denis Lefort, CPA, expert-conseil en Gouvernance, audit et contrôle, porte à ma connaissance un article concernant une importante décision du Financial Reporting Council au Royaume-Uni. Cette décision concerne la relation entre les auditeurs externes et les auditeurs internes.

The Financial Reporting Council has banned internal auditors from providing « direct assistance » to external audit teams. The new rules will come into effect in June 2014.

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Internal audit staff can no longer work on external audit teams.The Financial Reporting Council (FRC) has prohibited external auditors from using internal audit staff as “direct assistance” members of the audit team. It is doing this to create a clearer division of responsibility between internal and external audit teams to safeguard against conflicts of interest. It is aiming both to ensure the independence of the external auditor and promote greater confidence in the integrity of the audit for investors.

The prohibition comes into effect for audits of financial statements for periods ending on or after 15 June 2014.

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“Prohibiting direct assistance supports stakeholders’ expectation that external auditors should be free from threats to their independence, » said Nick Land, FRC board member and chairman of the Audit and Assurance Council. « In determining the effective date of the prohibition, the FRC has taken into consideration that planning the use of the work of internal auditors may take place early in the financial period being reported on.”

The ban follows the announcement in February that the FRC would adopt the revised international auditing standards on the external auditor’s use of work carried out by internal audit. It also announced that it would consider going beyond the international standard by prohibiting the direct use of internal audit staff on the external audit team. Feedback to the consultation suggested that there could be logistical issues for audits that were under way when the prohibition began. The FRC therefore decided to delay implementation until 2014.

Other revisions to the FRC’s auditing and ethical standards to reflect the revised international auditing standards on the external auditor’s use of work carried out by internal audit will also have the same effective date.