peer review

Journey through a peer review – initial notification

Since my last peer review in 2009, I started blogging and started performing peer reviews.  I’ve also been blogging about peer reviews.

So when I received notification yesterday, May 7, that it is time to start the paperwork for my current peer review, I thought it might be helpful to share my experiences with this journey through the peer review process.

Why? Haven’t all firms gone through the peer review process before?

Actually no.  In California there are a number of firms who still have to go through their first mandatory peer review since 2012 is the third year of the phase in of that requirement.  Other firms will perform their first attestation work and have to step into the peer review process.  New firms are still forming.  In larger firms, partners who have not been involved in the peer review process can get that responsibility assigned to them.

So, there are a lot of CPAs who could be helped by reading about this journey.

Yesterday I received a letter from the CalCPA Peer Review Program telling me it’s time to get started.

If your mandatory peer review reporting is due July 2012, its time to get started

Mandatory peer review in California is being phased in over three years.  Current issue of the California Board of Accounancy’s newsletter, Update, has a superb brief article on page 8.

Here is a great one sentence summary:

In July 2011, licensees with license numbers ending in 34 through 66 were notified that they are required to submit a Peer Review Reporting Form to the CBA by July 1, 2012.

What time frame is used for engagements in a peer review? Getting started on a peer review, part 5

You will have a particular date as the cut off for your peer review. This determines what is included in the population for selecting engagements to review.

A common misunderstanding is to think that the population for selection is those engagements issued during the peer review year.

Year 2 of mandatory peer review in California – – Board of Accountancy reminds CPAs with licenses between 34 and 66

CPAs whose licenses end between 34 and 66 received a reminder this week from the CBA that those lucky CPAs need to report by 7-1-12 whether they need to have a peer review.

All CPAs with licenses in that range number have to tell the board whether or not they are required to have a peer review. In one sentence, any firm providing attestation services must have a peer review.  What’s the big dea?  One of the biggest impacts is this new requirement includes sole practitioners who are not members of the AICPA.

My license is in that range.  So I received my letter this week.  …

What types of engagements are included on your peer review? Getting started on a peer review, part 4

Your peer review will cover A&A engagements.

The work that will be included in your peer review is accounting and auditing engagements, referred to as A&A. This obviously includes all your audits under SAS. It also includes your compilation and review services under SSARS.

Not so obvious is your services under the SSAE rules. This would be all those odd projects like examinations or compilations of prospective financial statements or written assertions, and other agreed-upon procedures.

What are a few factors to consider when selecting your peer reviewer? Getting started on a peer review, part 3

Here are a few things to consider.

Cost. That’s a biggie. Remember to consider the direct costs for the review, any travel time, and hotel & airfare if the firm is beyond driving distance. Cost is not the only factor though.

How to get started on your peer review – part 1

This is the beginning of a series of posts on how to get started with a peer review of your firm.

Many firms in California are going down this road because the mandatory peer review deadlines arrived June 2011. If your license number ends in 01-33, you already got started. The next one-third of firms (license ending in 34-66) have until June 2012. The remaining firms have until June 2013. The hairsplitting deadline is that the peer review information needs to be submitted by July 1.

How to handle engagement quality control reviews in a small firm

SQCS 7 requires a policy for engagement quality control reviews in all CPA firms.  There is no size cutoff.  However the rules do anticipate great flexibility in establishing the criteria.

It is perfectly appropriate to fine tune the criteria so that a relatively small number of engagements would be selected.  How?