Sample Representation Letter

NOTE: Peer reviews commencing on or after January 1, 2009 must be performed under the new standards, under which report reviews are no longer available. Firms previously eligible for a report reviews must now have an engagement review.

Firms are required to submit a representation letter to their reviewer as evidence that the firm's management is not aware of any situations where it or its personnel has not complied with state board(s) of accountancy or other regulatory bodies rules and regulations (including all applicable licensing requirements), has made available communications* relating to allegation or investigations of deficiencies (including litigation) within the three years preceding the firm's current peer review year end and through the date of the exit conference, has provided the reviewer with a list of all client engagements with periods ending during the year under review and has provided the reviewer with any other information requested by the reviewer. The letter should be signed by those members of management responsible for knowledge of the matters covered in the representations and the firm's system of quality control. The representation letter should be dated accordingly: system reviews — same day as the peer review report, engagement and report reviews — date firm submits list of engagements to the reviewer.

Failure or refusal to furnish a representation letter constitutes a limitation sufficient for the reviewer to consider modifying the report for a scope limitation or withdrawing from the review.

*Types of organizations relevant to meeting the objectives of this requirement:
(This list not intended to be all-inclusive)

AICPA or State CPA Society Ethics Committees
AICPA Joint Trial Board
State Boards of Accountancy
Security and Exchange Commission
Public Company Accounting Oversight Board
State Auditor
Department of Labor
Employee Benefits Security Administration
General Accounting Office
Office of Management and Budget
Department of Housing and Urban Development
Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
Office of Thrift and Supervision
Federal or State Inspector General's Offices
Other governmental agencies or organizations that have the authority to regulate accountants (in connection with the firm's accounting, auditing or attestation practice)
Legal letters (in connection with the firm's accounting, auditing or attestation practice)

 

Sample Representation Letter

Date

Dear [Team Captain/Reviewer]:

We are providing this letter in connection with the peer review of [name of firm] as of the date of this letter and for the year ended [year end date].

We understand that we are responsible for complying with the rules and regulations of state boards of accountancy and other regulators. We confirm, to the best of our knowledge and belief, that we are not aware of any situations where [name of firm] or its personnel has not complied with state board(s) of accountancy or other regulatory bodies rules and regulations, including applicable firm and individual licensing requirements in each state in which it practices for the year under review or has notified the peer reviewer of any such situations. We have also provided a list of all client engagements to the [reviewer/administering entity] with periods ending during the year under review and provided the reviewer with any other information requested, including communications relating to allegations or investigations (including litigation) in the conduct of an accounting, audit or attestation engagement performed and reported on by the firm, whether the matter relates to the firm or its professional personnel, within three years preceding the current peer review year-end. For attestation engagements, including financial forecasts or projections, the list included those engagements with report dates during the year under review.

Sincerely,

[Name of reviewed firm]