GASB Looking to Delay Certain Standards in Wake of Pandemic

Chris Gaetano
Published Date:
Apr 7, 2020
The Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) will consider delaying the effective dates of eight statements and five implementation guides in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. In its upcoming April 14 teleconference meeting, the board plans to discuss a proposal that would postpone or extend the effective dates of provisions that became effective or will become effective for reporting periods beginning after June 15, 2018, such as Statement No. 92, Omnibus 2020, and Implementation Guide No. 2019-3, Leases. The GASB statement, however, did not provide a list of all the specific measures that the board is considering.

It also plans to extend to June 30, 2020, the comment deadline for the Exposure Draft of a proposed concepts statement, Communication Methods in General Purpose External Financial Reports That Contain Basic Financial Statements: Notes to Financial Statements. The GASB also will postpone the public hearing on the document. The hearing has been tentatively rescheduled to July 28, 2020.

The GASB is the latest accounting standard setter to consider action in the wake of the global pandemic. The Financial Accounting Standards Board, in its meeting tomorrow, will discuss possibly delaying the effective dates for significant standards not yet in effect. The board also said it plans to assist stakeholders interpret guidance on priority issues such as troubled debt restructurings and lease modifications in the wake of the crisis, as well as how its standard-setting activities have been affected.

The International Accounting Standards Board (IASB), meanwhile, said last week that  it will continue to advance time-sensitive projects, such as the projects on interbank offered rates (IBOR) reform and amendments to International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) 17 Insurance Contracts, in accordance with the original project plans. However, it said that at its next meeting it will considering extending the comment periods for proposed standards. Further, the board said it will postpone to May 2020 the publication of several narrow-scope amendments to IFRS Standards originally planned for March and April 2020. This consolidation of publications is intended to facilitate more efficient post-publication procedures by its stakeholders.

The IASB also released guidance on how to apply IFRS 9 (accounting for expected credit losses) given the economic uncertainty the global pandemic has unleashed.

Other regulators that CPAs regularly interact with have come out with relief measures of their own over the past month or so. The IRS, beyond the deadline relief, also announced that it will be ceasing field audits and not forwarding delinquent accounts to private collection agencies. The SEC, meanwhile, came out with filing relief and also said it will not engage in enforcement if a registered fund does not deliver to investors the current prospectus when it is not able to be timely delivered because of circumstances related to COVID-19. Further, relief from in-person board meeting requirements, as well as requirements for filing Form N-23C-2, have been extended to Aug. 15. 

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