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IAS 8 Accounting Policies, Changes in Accounting Estimates and Errors

IAS 8 prescribes criteria for the selection of accounting policies. It also clarifies when a change in accounting policy is acceptable and provides guidance on the accounting treatment of such changes, as well as changes in accounting estimates and errors.

Published December 2003. Effective 1 January 2005.

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How standards trackers work

Financial Reporting Faculty members get full access. Login to get the version of the standard relevant to specific time periods via eIFRS.

ICAEW members and non-members can view a brief synopsis, amendments and details of current proposals.

UK qualifying parents and subsidiaries can take advantage of FRS 101 Reduced Disclosure Framework. Find out more on which entities qualify and the criteria to be met.

Synopsis

  • Accounting policies should be determined by reference to the relevant IFRS
  • If there is no relevant IFRS, management should use judgement to select a policy which results in reliable and relevant financial information
  • A change in an accounting policy is permitted only where it is required by an IFRS or it results in more relevant and reliable information
  • Changes in accounting policy should be applied retrospectively
  • Changes in accounting estimate should be applied prospectively
  • Errors should be corrected retrospectively

Which version of the standard?

'Which version of the standard?' is only available to members of the Financial Reporting Faculty. Please note that to access electronic versions of IFRS through the links in these standard trackers you need to have first logged into eIFRS.

Recent amendments

Full access to details of all the amendments is only available to Financial Reporting Faculty members. Find out how to join the faculty.

The following interpretations refer to IAS 8

Current proposals

  1. As a result of the IASB’s ongoing Disclosure Initiative, three projects are active in relation to IAS 8:
  • A project to amend IAS 8 to clarify the distinction between a change in accounting policy and a change in accounting estimate. An exposure draft is expected in 2017.
  • A review of general disclosure guidance in IAS 1 and IAS 8 with the objective of improving existing guidance. A discussion paper is was issued in March 2017.
  • A project to refine the definition of materiality and clarify its characteristics, resulting in amendments to IAS 1 and IAS 8. An exposure draft is expected in 2017.

UK reduced disclosures

UK qualifying parents and subsidiaries can take advantage of FRS 101 Reduced Disclosure Framework. Find out more on which entities qualify and the criteria to be met.

Amendments to the standard

There are no amendments to IAS 8 in order to comply with the Companies Act and related Regulation.

Disclosure exemptions

FRS 101 paragraph 8(i) states that a qualifying entity is exempt from the IAS 8 requirement to disclose details of a new IFRS which has been issued but is not yet effective and has not been applied by the entity.

IAS 8 paragraphs for which exemption is available: 30 and 31.

This page was last updated 6 June 2017