SEC Settlements Spotlight Auditors Gone Wild

Law360, New York (October 7, 2016, 12:21 PM EDT) -- James K. Goldfarb

Stephen J. Crimmins If you are a public company, or audit one, three recent SEC auditor independence cases deserve your attention. Auditor independence cases typically arise from financial, employment or business ties between an auditor and a client or their personnel. The recent cases, however, arose from what the SEC called “inappropriate close personal relationships.”

One case involved a romantic relationship between the audit firm’s engagement partner and the client’s chief accounting officer. The two other cases involved “significant” entertainment spending and “excessive” socializing between the audit firm’s coordinating partner and the client’s chief financial officer.

The respondents...

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