Did you know the AICPA has provided a tool you may use as a starting template to develop a Quality Control document?
If you perform compilations, reviews, or audits, you are required to have a written QC document. Even if you aren’t going through a system review. Even if you only do comps.
If you perform audits and will have to go through a system review, keep in mind you are obligated to have quality control program in place before the system review starts, even before the peer review year begins. That means you really really need to have a QC document in place. (Yes, I’m talking to you, my fellow sole practitioners.)
The AICPA’s template can give you an easy starting point, in case you want to step up your policy.
There are two documents, one tailored for a sole practitioner and the other for small firms. Here are links to the documents:
- Establishing and Maintaining a System of Quality control for a CPA Firm’s Accounting and Auditing Practice – For Sole Practitioners
- Establishing and Maintaining a System of Quality control for a CPA Firm’s Accounting and Auditing Practice – For Small- and Medium-Sized Firms
You can find the documents on this page.
Each of the documents has an explanation of the quality control standards, a sample quality control document, and the full text of Quality Control Standards (SQCS) Section 10, A Firm’s System of Quality Control.
The sample QC document has the overall QC requirements, specific policies, and suggestions on how a sample firm applies those policies.
The templates also have a sample worksheet on how to document monitoring of the policy. This is a challenge in a small firm, especially for us sole practitioners.
Just copy, paste, and edit for a tailored QC document
Here’s a suggestion on how you can quickly have a tailored QC document that fits your firm perfectly. Easily. And it’s free.
- Just copy the sample QC document.
- Paste it into your favorite word processor.
- Edit it severely so it fits your firm and what you are already doing.
- Develop internal procedures to do the things you haven’t done yet but are required to do.
- Modify the document to explain your new procedures.
Then you have a tailored quality control document.
Free and legal
Oh, in addition to being free, it is also legal to copy & paste to your heart’s content.
The AICPA site has the following permission granted for these specific documents:
The Practice Aid is offered to AICPA members at no charge and is available in two versions: one for small- and medium-sized firms and another for sole practitioners. …
The AICPA encourages practitioners to use the materials in developing your systems of quality control and grants users permission to copy and incorporate portions of the work as necessary. This permission is for internal use only except for educational purposes. The materials or any portion thereof may not be incorporated into a for-sale work or otherwise distributed without separate written permission from the AICPA.
Easy, free, and legal. Doesn’t get better than that, huh?