Organizations often take it as an article of faith that their auditors are following professional standards—and for good reason. Publicly released peer reviews of auditing firms give 95 percent of them passing grades for their work. In fact, a recent Wall Street...
Avoiding Accountant Malpractice Claims: It’s Not Getting Any Easier
For nearly 25 years now, I’ve been exhorting CPAs to take seriously their responsibility to detect fraud during an audit—or face the potentially ruinous financial and reputational consequences of accountant malpractice claims. Sadly, many audit firms and CPAs have yet...
How Getting Too Close to Clients Can Lead to Accountant Malpractice Claims
Accountant malpractice claims have been a growth industry for litigators for more than two decades, thanks to increasingly strict professional standards for auditors and accountants. And there’s no letup in sight. In fact, even in 2020, with the coronavirus wreaking...
Accountant Malpractice Claims Are Likely to Rise. Are You Prepared?
CPAs, especially those in smaller accounting practices, usually have close relationships with their clients—and rightfully so. After all, who else is better positioned to understand clients’ finances and businesses than their trusted accountants? That is until they...
Brilliance v. Ethics – Which One Wins?
Originally published by ACFE Insights. Smart people commit fraud every day. A recent case gives us a prime example. A federal judge asked Donald Watkins, Sr. to step away from the jury box as Watkins, Sr. made an impassioned plea in his closing argument. Watkins, Sr....
Auditors Who Stole the Exam Are Convicted of Fraud
This failure of duty matters – it violates public trust and costs innocent people their jobs, their pensions and above all – faith in a system. The Wall Street Journal reported on March 11, 2019 that David Middendorf, the former national managing partner for audit...
Big 4 CPA Firm Knew in Advance Which Audits Would Be Inspected by Government Watchdogs
This is violation of trust, and it matters! Auditors must design their audits to look for fraud, and failure to do so may cause massive losses for stakeholders, investors, creditors and retirees. Neglecting to detect fraud can be truly life-altering — especially for...
Technology is Changing Auditing
Or… has technology already changed auditing?
The accounting and auditing world is buzzing with talk of how automation and other technologies will reshape the accounting profession. Oh, how slow this world catches on! The reshape should have already taken place as both technology and automation have far surpassed the capabilities and knowledge of most auditors.
28th Annual ACFE Global Fraud Conference in Nashville — Like a Fine Wine
The premier annual conference for anti-fraud professionals just concluded in Nashville at Music City Center. Nashville has every reason to beat its chest about this new venue — it is just fantastic. It’s as good as, if not better than, any conference center in any major city across the country.
The Give and the Take in Charitable Giving
Charitable giving, while good with intent, is not always received as expected. Let’s say you and I give to a seemingly worthwhile charity. You may be surprised at who really takes from the charity – frequently, it’s the fundraisers and executives. Oftentimes the fundraisers and executives are one in the same, since many founders will leave the charity to start a consulting and fundraising business to contract with the charity. This is really where it begins to get out of hand.
Benefits of Seeking Independent Counsel in an Accounting Malpractice Lawsuit
Most CPAs will never face the underbelly of an accounting malpractice lawsuit. Those who do, however, will say the challenges are something they never want to experience again in their lives.
A Lesson on Investigating Fraud from A Fictional Investigator
As a frequent speaker on the subject of fraud, people often ask me, “How do you investigate fraud?” My answer is always the same: You look for the anomaly. To me, it sounds so simple until I step back and realize that most people cannot see the anomaly, although it is usually right in front of them.