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Yellow Book and Single Audit Act Resources

Single Audit Resources

The Single Audit Act Amendments

 The Single Audit Act gives the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) the authority to develop government-wide guidelines and policy on performing audits to comply with the Act. The most recent OMB regulation issued for that purpose is Title 2 U.S. Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards (Uniform Guidance). It includes uniform cost principles and audit requirements for federal awards to nonfederal entities and administrative requirements for all federal grants and cooperative agreements. The previous OMB regulation containing requirements for single audits was OMB Circular A-133, Audits of States, Local Governments and Non-Profit Organizations (Circular A-133).

Accessing Key Single Audit Related Information

Here is a reference to key Single Audit Act information:

  •  The Uniform Guidance codified in Title 2 of CFR, Subtitle A, Chapter II, Part 200
  •  OMB Office of Federal Financial Management web site to access compliance supplements to various additional uniform guidance>
  •  Access Council on Financial Assistance Reform (COFAR) guidance including FAQs, archived webcasts, and other information>

OMB Circular A-133 – Major Programs

Various regulators that monitor the quality of single audits are identifying problems with the auditor's application of the risk-based approach to determining major programs as required under Circular A-133. The risk-based approach is designed to focus the Circular A-133 audit on higher risk programs. To assist you in understanding the risk-based approach, with respect to Circular A-133's requirements for major program selection, please visit:


Understanding the Single Audit Environment

Here is a summary of steps an auditor should undertake to be prepared for conducting an audit in the Single Audit environment:

  •  Gain an understanding of the basics of OMB Circular A-133, when it is applicable, and what it requires of the auditor.
  •  Understand what the compliance requirements are, how clients can identify them, and what auditors are required to test.
  •  Understand the client’s responsibilities for internal control over compliance, the various elements of COSO, and auditor responsibilities for understanding and testing client internal control.
  •  Gain familiarity with the various rules and regulations that must be complied with and the various reporting requirements for both auditors and clients to achieve compliance.
  •  Know what tips there are for clients to get ready for their audits and steps that can be taken to help ensure a quality audit is obtained.

For additional information, please visit:

Government Auditing Standards (Yellow Book) Practice Aids and Tools

The AICPA’s Governmental Audit Quality Center (GAQC) web site section provide links to practice aids and tools that will assist auditors in understanding the requirements of Government Auditing Standards, issued by the Comptroller General of the United States (also referred to as the Yellow Book and GAGAS). Below are some of the highlights of the GAQC publications that can be found at>

  •  2011 Yellow Book Independence—Nonaudit Services Documentation Practice Aid
  •  Peer Review Yellow Book Guidance
  •  AICPA – Yellow Book (GAGAS) Independence Rules Comparison
  •  Archived Web Event on the GAQC 2011 Yellow Book Independence Practice Aid
  •  Archived Web Event on the 2011 Yellow Book
  •  Illustrative Yellow Book Audit Reports
  •  Government Auditing Standards: Guidance on GAGAS Requirements for Continuing Professional Education

Ethical Requirements and Considerations Under Government Auditing Standards

For an AICPA guide containing a list of quality issues found in its investigations of government and not-for-profit entities audits, please visit:

Yellow Book Independence

The auditor needs to understand and document:

  •  Management’s ability to oversee non-attest services based on their requisite skills, knowledge and experience.
  •  A common understanding with management regarding responsibilities for non-attest services.
  •  Significant threats to independence and application of safeguards to mitigate any identified threats.

Additional information may be found by visiting the AICPA June 2016 Reviewer Alert at and look for “Spotlight on Audits Subject to Government Auditing Standards and Single Audit” on p. 3.