New Agreed-Upon Procedures Standard Gives CPAs More Flexibility

 – December 6, 2019
New Agreed-Upon Procedures Standard Gives CPAs More Flexibility

The American Institute of CPAs’ (AICPA) Auditing Standards Board (ASB) has released Statement on Standards for Attestation Engagements No. 19, Agreed-Upon Procedures Engagements, to supersede SSAE No. 18 AT-C section 215 of the same title in AICPA Professional Standards. SSAE No. 19, which also amends SSAE No. 18 AT-C section 105, Concepts Common to All Attestation Engagements.

The SSAE provides flexibility to a practitioner performing an agreed-upon procedures engagement by:

  1. removing the requirement that the practitioner request an assertion from the responsible party;
  2. allowing procedures to be developed over the course of the engagement;
  3. allowing the practitioner to develop or assist in developing the procedures;
  4. no longer requiring intended users to take responsibility for the sufficiency of the procedures and instead requiring the engaging party to simply acknowledge the appropriateness of the procedures prior to the issuance of the practitioner’s report, and
  5. permitting the practitioner to issue a general-use report.

“In today’s increasingly complex business environment, there is a great and apparent need for auditors’ expertise in rapidly evolving subject matters,” said Bob Dohrer, CPA, CGMA, AICPA Chief Auditor. “By allowing the practitioner to assist in developing procedures, not requiring an assertion by a responsible party and permitting general-use reports, the agreed-upon procedures services delivers enhanced value and relevance to report users.”

SSAE No. 19 is effective for agreed-upon procedures dated on or after July 15, 2021. Early implementation is permitted.