Auditing & Assurance
Lynch & Associates Limited, as a member firm of Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand are recognised as a Qualified Auditor in accordance with the Financial Reporting Act 2013 and the New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants (“Institute”) Rules.
We have a team of talented and financially astute audit professionals who utilise their skills every day to make a difference for businesses, public sector entities and not for profit organisations. We audit with professional integrity, principled judgement and financial discipline combined with a client focused approach. Our auditing solutions are always thorough, but we also strive to make it a positive and beneficial experience for our clients.
An audit is an engagement whereby Lynch & Associates Limited, as an independent expert, provides an opinion on the subject matter, in most cases, your annual financial statements. The auditor's opinion is designed to give a high, but not absolute level of assurance. For example, an audit of financial statements provides users of those statements with reasonable assurance from an independent professional that the financial statements do not contain material misstatements.
Please get in touch with us if you require an audit, review or an agreed upon engagement. We will be very happy to discuss your requirements and establish the most appropriate level of assurance you require to best meet your needs.
Audit & Assurance standards
Lynch & Associates Limited adhere to the full suite of International Standards on Auditing (ISAs) when carrying out an audit.
These Standards apply to all audits carried out by members of the Institute, irrespective of the size or nature of the entity. The ISAs contain the basic principles and minimum procedures for the conduct of an audit and reflect international best practice.
Reasonable assurance relates to the accumulation of the evidence necessary for the auditor to form a conclusion or opinion. An auditor cannot obtain absolute assurance because there are inherent limitations within an audit which affect the auditor's ability to detect material misstatements.
An auditor can provide assurance on a wide variety of matters. It is important for the party requesting the audit to clearly establish what they want assurance on. In some cases this will be partly determined by legislation or regulations, for example, the Charities Act requires, for some charities, that their performance report is audited or reviewed each year.
In order to provide reasonable assurance we are required to obtain sufficient appropriate evidence on which to base our conclusions. This will involve, among other things:
Obtaining an understanding of the organisation;
Assessing risks and performing further procedures linked to those identified risks;
Obtaining evidence which will depend, in part on the auditor's risk ssessment;
Obtaining corroborating information;
Evaluating the evidence obtained.
The exact nature, timing and extent of evidence-gathering procedures will vary from one engagement to the next.
Summary of Our Audit & Assurance Services
TYPE OF SERVICE
AGREED UPON PROCEDURES|
Level of Assurance
High, but not absolute assurance – expressed as reasonable assurance
Moderate assurance – expressed as limited assurance
No opinion expressed
Code of Ethics
Independence in Assurance Engagements
Code of Ethics
Independence in Assurance Engagements
Code of Ethics|
Other Professional Requirements
Compliance with Auditing Standards
Compliance with Review Engagement Standards
Compliance with Agreed Upon Procedures Standards
The audit report contains the auditor’s opinion on the matter to be reported on. For example, the audit opinion may state the financial statements give a true and fair view
The review report states that nothing has come to the reviewer’s attention that would cause them to believe the financial information does not present a true and fair view (or the reasons for not being able to state this)|
The accountant reports on factual findings and identified the nature of the work performed enabling the accountant to make such statements|
Lynch & Associates utilise a risk-based audit approach. This methodology enables us to develop our audit plan, with audit procedures focused on specific risks, in order to deliver an efficient and cost-effective audit to our clients.
This approach allows us to understand your business, operations, internal controls and information systems; identify areas of risk including business, financial, compliance and reporting risks; and then bring a focus to those risks and their materiality. Our risk assessment will inform our audit procedures and determine the nature and extent of our audit work.
Our audit plan is designed to provide reasonable assurance that the financial statements are not materially misstated. Reasonable assurance will be derived from a combination of our risk assessment, tests of controls and substantive testing. This includes a number of important steps to ensure we not only add value to our client but that we adhere to audit standards.
A review engagement is designed to give the reader a limited level of assurance on the financial information. Given the level of assurance is lower for a review than audit, this form of assurance can be more cost effective for smaller organisations and not-for-profit entities.
This involves an independent examination of information with the objective of providing a report that nothing has come to the reviewer's attention to cause the reviewer to believe that the information does not present a true and fair view. This lends credibility to the financial information but provides a lower level of assurance than an audit.
A review is based on enquiries and analytical procedures (comparing information with other relevant information to see if it is consistent and 'makes sense') and the exercise of professional judgement. However, any indication that an error (or fraud) may have occurred, which could result in material misstatement, will result in us undertaking further investigation.
Both reasonable assurance (audit) and limited assurance (review) engagements require the application of assurance skills and techniques and the gathering of sufficient appropriate evidence as part of a systematic engagement process.
The nature, timing and extent of procedures for gathering sufficient appropriate evidence in a review are more limited than an audit engagement. If the user needs a higher level of assurance on parts of the financial statements, a review could be supplemented with an audit of selected items in the financial statements.
Assurance reviews can be a more cost-effective option to consider for smaller clients who do not need a mandatory audit required by legislation, funders or your Constitution.
In an agreed-upon procedures engagement we agree with our client to perform specific procedures. The reviewer simply reports to the client on the factual findings resulting from the procedures that have been performed.
This type of engagement may be of particular usefulness to a funder, as it can target the specific area that they are interested in, for example, giving the funder specific information relating to their grant (such as how the grant was applied; what items were purchased).
Our report is restricted to the party requesting that the procedures be performed and that party must form their own conclusions from the procedures performed and the factual findings reported.
You may also find the attached articles "A Plain English Guide to Audit" and “The Mystery of Audit and Assurance Unravelled” helpful in gaining further understanding and insight into what an audit entails including:
Whether you really need an audit?
Requirements for different entities including companies, charities, incorporated societies
Some common misunderstandings about the audit process