News & Analysis as of

Staffing Your Estate Plan

A good estate plan can significantly reduce taxes, streamline transfers of assets after your death, sidestep costly public probate proceedings and minimize family squabbles over inheritance. But if you don’t have the...more

Blog: Do Hiring Practices Lead To Earnings Management?

Yes, according to a study from academics at the University of South Carolina, reported by Reuters. The study showed that U.S. public companies tend to favor hiring accountants “who show a willingness to flatter corporate...more

A Compilation of Enforcement and Non-Enforcement Actions

Non-Enforcement - States are Accommodating Crowdfunding Offerings While the SEC Continues to Ponder Crowdfunding Rules - The SEC first proposed rules in October 2013 for the crowdfunding exemption which was included in...more

2015 Florida Legislative Post-Session Report

Carlton Fields Jorden Burt’s Government Law and Consulting Practice Group released its 2015 Florida Legislative Post-Session Report detailing significant bills that passed during the 2015 Regular Session of the Florida...more

FASB Defers Effective Date of New Revenue Recognition Standard

Audit committees, CFOs and accountants everywhere are cheering as the FASB has deferred the effective date of its new revenue recognition standard. As a result, public business entities, certain not-for-profit entities, and...more

EBSA Releases Plan Audit Quality Report, Recommends Stricter Plan Audit Standards

The DOL’s Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) released a report assessing the quality of audit work performed by certified public accountants with respect to financial statement audits of retirement and welfare...more

DOL Report on Quality of Independent Plan Audits Shows that Plan Sponsors Must Continually Monitor Plan Compliance

The Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) recently released “Assessing the Quality of Employee Benefit Plan Audits,” a comprehensive report reviewing the quality of audit work...more

[Event] The 2015 Accountant Liability Update, A Game of Risk: To Play or to Win? - June 25, Waltham, MA

LeClairRyan invites you to join us for a free half-day seminar The 2015 Accountant Liability Update, A Game of Risk: To Play or to Win? Predictability. Focus. Staying on Point. On a familiar playing field – you can make...more

The Financial Report - Volume 4, No. 10 • May 2015 (Global)

Discussion and Analysis - One of the earliest, and certainly one of the most famous, computers of all time is HAL 9000, the sentient computer that controls the systems of the Discovery One spacecraft and interacts with...more

Accountants Can be Either Inside or Outside Privilege Protection

Lawyers and accountants have always had an uneasy relationship, and that tension extends to the attorney-client privilege context. Accountants can either be inside or outside privilege protection. ...more

6th Circuit Holds that Accountants Conducting Financial Arbitration Can Also Make Legal Determinations

A new case from the Sixth Circuit addresses whether accountants who are resolving a dispute about payments made under an agreement can also make legal determinations about the same agreement. In a 2-1 decision, the Sixth...more

Illinois Supreme Court Holds Accountant is Holder of Privilege, No Testamentary Exception

Late in the March term, the Illinois Supreme Court handed down its opinion in Brunton v. Kruger, an opinion with potentially significant implications for Illinois accountants. Brunton posed three related questions about the...more

Illinois Supreme Court Holds Information Provided to a CPA Is Privileged Information Held by the Accountant Alone

In examining the issue of the accountant-client privilege for the first time, the Supreme Court of Illinois recently ruled that the privilege belongs to the accountant, not the client. In Brunton v. Kruger, 2015 IL 117663...more

FASB Eliminates Extraordinary Items Reporting

In January, the FASB adopted a final Accounting Standards Update that eliminates the requirement that preparers report events that meet the criteria for extraordinary classification separately in an income statement, net of...more

US China Trade War–Developments in Trade, Trade Politics, Patents/IP, Antitrust and Securites

On January 11thth, I put up my last post stating that because of its length, I have broken up the post into two parts. This February post includes a Trade, Customs and IP update with longer sections on Antitrust and...more

Homebuilder Series Webinar: Fiduciary Duties & Auditor Liability [Video]

Watch an in-depth Homebuilder Series webinar that discusses auditor liability and fiduciary duties. Two issues of recurring interest to company officers and directors are the potential liabilities of outside...more

‘Horizon scanning’: is a ‘Top-Level’ Firm Required to See Further?

This case involved allegations of professional negligence in the context of tax planning advice, and saw the application of reasonably familiar principles. Whilst these cases always depend on their facts, the decision may...more

Focus: PI Insurance – Conformity Certification – New Rules

Many undertakings operating in the professional indemnity insurance sector traditionally offer policies covering the civil liability of certified chartered accountants and bookkeepers arising from the issue of conformity...more

Reversals of Fortune: Putting the Brakes on Section 10(b) and Section 11 Claims Against Auditors of China-Based Companies

A federal court’s recent dismissal of Securities Exchange Act claims against the auditor of a Chinese company prompted us to examine the state of recent U.S. civil securities litigation against accounting firms that audited...more

Illinois Supreme Court Debates Scope of Accountant-Client Privilege in Will Contests

Last week, the Illinois Supreme Court heard oral argument in Brunton v. Kruger.  Brunton involves the scope of the accountant-client privilege – specifically, what happens to that privilege after the client dies, and how the...more

Top 10 Legal Mistakes For Start-Ups

1. You Haven’t Lawyered Up. OK, that may be a little dramatic, but the worst case scenario is that you have a handshake deal with your co-founders. After all, we are all buds, this won’t go wrong. Even if it never goes...more

SEC Accounting Staff Speeches at Annual AICPA Conference

On December 8 and 9, staff members of the SEC’s Office of the Chief Accountant, including the SEC chief accountant in his first published speech since he arrived at the SEC, discussed various accounting and financial...more

CRA Announces Collaboration with CPA Canada

As expected, the CRA has formally announced the details of its collaborative efforts with CPA Canada. The CRA recently spoke about this collaboration at the Toronto Centre CRA-Tax Professionals breakfast seminar....more

Accountant’s Fiduciary Duty as Independent Auditor

In North Carolina, an accounting firm now owes a fiduciary duty to its audit client, both as a matter of law and as a matter of fact. On November 4, 2014, a North Carolina appellate court held — for the first time —...more

Bridging the Week - October 2014 #4

Senior Fed Officials Encourage Financial Industry Firms to Improve Compliance Culture - Enhancing culture was the theme at a workshop on “Reforming Culture and Behavior in the Financial Services Industry” held at the...more

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