Regulations and guidance for those working in the regulated area of audit in the UK, Ireland and the Crown Dependencies
Revised Audit Regulations and Guidance came into effect on 6 April 2008, when the relevant sections of the Companies Act 2006 came into force. Periodically, changes are made to the regulations. Firms registered for audit with ICAEW are required to comply with the audit regulations and guidance.
Although this mainly concerns corporate audit firms, we suggest that all firms that undertake audits of Irish entities read this note which draws attention to a few matters unique to the Irish jurisdiction.
The Audit regulations and guidance were updated in June 2012 to cover both Ireland and the UK as explained in Audit News 51. Most of the regulations are the same for both countries, but there are some minor differences. Regulations unique to Ireland or which do not apply in Ireland are set out in this schedule of changes.
Special arrangements apply to firms that audit companies incorporated in one of the Crown Dependencies which have 'transferable securities' admitted to trading on a 'regulated market' in the EU. The requirements apply even if the firm or company is not operating in a Crown Dependency.
For financial years starting on or after 6 April 2008, when an auditor ceases to hold an audit appointment, the successor auditor can look at the working papers of the predecessor auditor. For the avoidance of doubt, although this regulation places an obligation on the 'predecessor' auditor, the appointment referred to in the regulation and at the end of the related guidance is that of the 'successor' auditor. It is irrelevant when the predecessor was appointed. (Note, in the article in Audit News 45, about the implementation of audit regulation 3.09, the reference to 'an accounting period' in the penultimate sentence should be to 'a new appointment'.)
There is additional guidance for both predecessor and successor auditors on the provision of access to information (including example letters to use).
To help registered auditors with AR 3.13, we've produced some guidance on Audit Regulation 3.13.
Issues for audit firms outside the US that audit entities with a primary or secondary listing in the US, or a significant subsidiary thereof, and need to register with the PCAOB.
It’s important to maintain your firm record accurately. An inaccurate or out of date firm record may constitute a misdescription of your firm. It could also lead to regulatory or disciplinary action.
To help registered auditors with the notification requirements when an auditor ceases to hold office, refer to our Technical Advisory Services helpsheets.
The audit regulations require a registered auditor to be controlled in a certain way (see Chapter 2 of the Audit Regulations and Guidance).
If the registered auditor is a company, it's possible that persons other than the named shareholder may have interests in the company’s shares. This could mean that the company is no longer controlled in accordance with the audit regulations.
The directors therefore need the appropriate powers to call for information about interests in shares, and disenfranchise shares if necessary, so that the registered auditor would continue to be controlled in accordance with the audit regulations.
The following model articles have been drafted to help a firm include special provisions within its articles of association.