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PCAOB Seeks Comments on Its Interim Attestation Standards

Ruth Singleton
Published Date:
Sep 27, 2022

The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) has issued a request for information and comments about its interim attestation standards, adopted in 2003 and still in effect.  

According to the request document, attest engagements “include examination, review, and agreed-upon procedures engagements, which involve issuing a report on subject matter, or an assertion about subject matter, that is the responsibility of another party. … The subject matter of an attest engagement can vary and may relate to, for example, a company’s compliance with laws and regulations, or a company’s historical data or measures that are evaluated against certain criteria.” 

The PCAOB document further states, “An attest engagement performed under PCAOB standards is designed to provide a certain level of assurance … and involves issuing a corresponding report.” In addition, the document specifies that “[e]xamination attest engagements provide reasonable assurance; [r]eview attest engagements provide moderate assurance; and [a]greed-upon procedures attest engagements do not provide specific assurance but involve a report on the performance of specified procedures and the resulting findings.” 

The PCAOB makes clear that it is seeking comments on the current interim standards before it engages in the process of modernizing them: “The staff of the PCAOB—prior to recommending to the Board any approach to revising or updating the PCAOB attestation standards—is conducting outreach through this request for information and comment to augment its ongoing analysis of these standards and attest engagements performed under them. The staff is requesting information and comment from all interested stakeholders on matters related to the application and use of the PCAOB attestation standards.”  

Specifically, the PCAOB wants information and views on “(i) use of attestation reports; (ii) current practices related to attest engagements, including the extent of current and anticipated uses of PCAOB attestation standards; (iii) potential updates to certain requirements relevant to attest engagements; and (iv) data and other information about potential economic implications of standard setting in this area.” 

Comments are due by Oct. 26, and can be sent by email to; through the PCAOB website,; or by postal mail to: Office of the Secretary, PCAOB, 1666 K Street, NW, Washington, DC 20006-2803.  All comments should refer to “Request for Information and Comment on the Application and Use of the PCAOB’s Interim Attestation Standards” on the subject or reference line. 

All comments received in response to the request for comment will be made available to the public and posted on the PCAOB website.  


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