CPA's Guide to Effective Engagement Letters (13th Edition)

Author(s): Ric Rosario, Ron Klein, Suzanne M. Holl

Published: Oct 12, 2018
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ISBN: 9780808050254
Product Number: 10016983-0007
Volumes: 1
Update Frequency: Bi-yearly
912 Pages

The integrity of your practice depends on the contents of your engagement letters. Whether it's a new engagement, repeat engagement, or, especially, a changed engagement, you need to know what to say and how to say it correctly. Using the sample letters and advice in this user-friendly guide, you'll improve client/CPA communication, document your engagements more effectively, and protect yourself from litigation. A well-constructed engagement letter also provides an opportunity to explore other potential business with your client. A wide variety of engagement types are covered, and every letter can be easily customized and printed.

CPA's Guide to Effective Engagement Letters (13th Edition) has been updated throughout, including new wording and new letters for:

  • Updated review, compilation and preparation letters that comply with SSARS No. 23, Omnibus Statement on Standards for Accounting and Review Services—2016.
  • New compilation letter template to be used if the accountant decides to accept responsibility for the design, implementation, and maintenance of internal control relevant to the preparation and fair presentation of the financial statements as allowed under SSARS No. 23.
  • Updated letters for prospective financial statements (forecasts and projections) that comply with SSARS No. 23.
  • Updated language for the attestation engagement letters that complies with SSAE 18.
  • Other New letters, including one designed for CPAs providing preparation and tax services under a special purpose framework.
  • Updated tax engagement letters that include revised language for foreign reporting requirements and return due date changes.

Also included in the Thirteenth Edition are new and updated case studies. Several of them are offered in a multiple-choice format, with answers and feedback for incorrect responses. Topics include the following:

  • Test your cyber IQ
  • FBAR reporting
  • Potential data breach of tax files
  • Employee fraud
  • A set of three ethical dilemmas
  • Voicemail/e-mail fraud and investment advisory services
  • Embezzlement involving a firm merger and audit services

The integrity of your practice depends on the contents of your engagement letters. Whether it's a new engagement, repeat engagement, or, especially, a changed engagement, you need to know what to say and how to say it correctly. Using the sample letters and advice in this user-friendly guide, you'll improve client/CPA communication, document your engagements more effectively, and protect yourself from litigation. A well-constructed engagement letter also provides an opportunity to explore other potential business with your client. A wide variety of engagement types are covered, and every letter can be easily customized and printed.

The Thirteenlth Edition of CPA's Guide to Effective Engagement Letters has been updated throughout, including:

  • A new chapter on Preparation of Financial Statements in accordance with SSARS No. 21
  • Updated Review and Compilation letters that comply with SSARS No. 21
  • Revised peer review letters for System Reviews and engagement Reviews
  • Updated mediation and arbitration language
  • Revised expanded tax engagement letters that include language addressing final tangible property regulations as well as the Affordable Care Act
  • Updated letters for Personal Financial Planning that comply with SSPFPS No. 1
  • Other New letters including one for an income tax preparation for Single-Member LLC engagement

The book comprises eight sections:

  1. Financial Statements
  2. Tax Preparation and Planning
  3. General Accounting
  4. Other Engagements
  5. Other Letters
  6. Internal Controls
  7. Record Retention and Destruction Policy
  8. Disengaging

The book is formatted so that the left-hand column contains suggested engagement letter wording pertaining to a specific subject and the right-hand column offers commentary and important advice. The suggested wording the book has been compiled and edited with resources from CAMICO Services, Inc., a subsidiary of CAMICO Mutual Insurance Company, and the commentary, including pitfalls to avoid, is based on the experience of actual CPAs.

  • Table of Contents
  • CPA's Guide to Effective Engagement Letters (13th Edition)

    Topics and Content


    1. Audit Engagement Letters
    2. Review Engagement Letters
    3. Compilation Engagement Letters
    4. Preparation Engagement Letters
    5. Individual Tax Engagement Letters
    6. Partnership Tax Preparation Engagement Letters
    7. Corporate Tax Preparation Engagement Letters
    8. Estate/Trust Tax Preparation Engagement Letters
    9. IRS/State Tax Representation Engagement Letters
    10. Other Tax Engagement Letters
    11. Bookkeeping and Write-Up Engagement Letters
    12. Personal/Business Management Engagement Letters
    13. Prospective Financial Statements Engagement Letters
    14. Business Valuation Engagement Letters
    15. Management Consulting Services Engagement Letters
    16. Computer Consulting Services Engagement Letters
    17. Litigation Support Engagement Letters
    18. Assurance Services Engagement Letters
    19. Other Engagement Letters
    20. Other Letters
    21. Internal Controls
    22. Record Retention
    23. Disengaging
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