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What does the ATO independence crackdown mean for SMSF audits?

The ATO continues to have concerns over auditors who are not independent and those that are not complying with the ATO’s regulations. Auditors cannot be a trustee or member of the fund nor the person who prepared the SMSF accounts.

It is crucial that all SMSFs are complying with ATO regulations. There are challenges in completing independent audits for an accounting firm that is also responsible for preparing the accounts and the trustees of a SMSF. Addressing issues with clients can be difficult when funds do not comply.

What you can expect from a real independent audit:

  • provides key benefits to the accounting firm preparing the accounts. Keeping at arms’ length from the audit process allows the accounting firm to work with the auditor to identify compliance issues and also with the client to address compliance issues without straining the client relationship.

  • improves long-term compliance of SMSFs as trustees are provided with frank and honest feedback. This reduces risk for accounting firms and also provides peace of mind through knowing that the funds have been thoroughly scrutinised. We maintain and respect the relationship that accounting firms have with their SMSF client.

Saul SMSF is one of Australia’s most trusted independent SMSF auditors. We build strong client relationships by communicating clearly and maintaining professional independence. Contact us for more information.

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