The American Institute of CPAs’ Accounting and Review Services Committee has issued a Proposed Statement on Standards for Accounting and Review Services, Framework for Performing and Reporting on Compilation and Review Engagements, as a result of its Clarity Project.

The committee has decided that it would be in the public interest to have all the professional literature for engagements performed in accordance with Statements on Auditing Standards and Statements on Standards for Accounting and Review Services, or SSARS, drafted using the same conventions. It has therefore mostly used the clarity drafting conventions also used by the Auditing Standards Board in its Clarity Project. The resulting clarified SSARSs are thus intended to be easier to read, understand and apply.

The proposed SSARS have been drafted in accordance with clarity drafting conventions, by establishing objectives for each clarified AR section, including a definitions section when relevant,
separating any requirements from the application and other explanatory material, numbering application and other explanatory material paragraphs using an “A-” prefix and presenting them in a separate section that follows the Requirements section, and using formatting techniques, such as bullet lists, to enhance readability.

The proposed SSARS would supersede paragraphs .01–.04 and .09–.51 of AR section 60 (AICPA, Professional Standards), of the same title. In addition to providing a framework for performing and reporting on compilation and review engagements, the proposed SSARS also sets forth the meaning of certain terms used in SSARS when describing the professional requirements imposed on accountants performing compilation and review engagements.

Comments on the proposals are due May 2, 2014. The proposed SSARS does not change or expand AR section 60 in any significant respect, the AICPA noted.

The proposed SSARS would be effective for compilations and reviews of financial statements for periods ending on or after Dec. 15, 2015, but early implementation would be permitted.