Reviewed Financial Statements
Reviewed Financial Statements consists of the auditor inquiring of management personnel in order to verify the financial records of the company. Unless deemed necessary, the accountant is not required to obtain any independent corroboration to substantiate the personnel presentations. In contrast, as part of a certified audit, the auditor must obtain independent evidence to substantiate the assertions made by the association’s employees and management.
In addition to a big difference in detail and thoroughness, Reviewed Financial Statements can cost hundreds of dollars less than an audit. A review does not require the auditor to formulate an opinion as to the records as is required under standard rules for an audit. The purpose of reviewed financial statements is the expression of limited assurance that there are no material modifications that should be made to the statements in order for them to be in conformity with generally accepted accounting principles (audited financial statements).
Limitations of Reviewed Financial Statements:
The level of assurance provided by reviewed financial statements is significantly less than that of an audit. In an audit, the auditor’s report provides assurance that there are no material modifications to the financial statements to be in conformance with GAAP. In a review, the accountants’ report is one of negative assurance where the accountant attests that nothing has come to the attention of the accountant causing such financial statements to be misleading or otherwise incorrectly stated.