Audit Committee Considerations: COVID-19 Guidance from SEC and PCAOB

April 2020

As audit committees, management and auditors continue to wrestle with practical challenges of accounting, reporting and disclosing impacts of COVID-19, the SEC staff and PCAOB have issued recent guidance based on their observations and engagement. We have summarized some of the significant takeaways and provided such guidance and our insights as a series of questions for audit committees to consider in executing financial reporting responsibilities and ensure audit quality.
 
The SEC and PCAOB are both closely monitoring the issues raised by COVID-19 as they relate to on-going audits of financial statements and timely reporting by public companies and impacts on investors and global capital markets. In response, they have each begun to issue various guidance and, in certain circumstances, relief to both public companies and auditors with the goal of continuing to provide high quality financial statements that investors and capital markets can rely on. Much of this guidance has been captured by recent BDO publications and programming, including but not limited to BDO’s COVID-19 – Accounting, Reporting and Other Related Considerations publication along with our April 2020 webinar COVID-10: Accounting, Reporting and Other Considerations for Boards. Please refer to the comprehensive guide for further information.

Additionally, we have prepared Questions for Audit Committees in Contemplating COVID-19 Impacts designed to assist audit committees in execution of their oversight roles and responsibilities to ensure the performance of high quality audits and issuance of transparent and reliable financial reporting.

Recent Regulatory Guidance Covered in This Guide  
Next Steps
We encourage audit committees, management, as well as our own professionals to review the guidance referenced in this Alert and additional guidance anticipated to be released by regulators. We further encourage robust dialogue with our clients and our engagement teams around audit quality. For evolving information and insights, we encourage you to check in often to BDO’s COVID-19 Resource Center.

 

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