Accounting & Auditing: Upcoming Changes Present Challenges and Opportunities
By Mark A. Stewart, Jr., CPA, National President, NCCPAP
February 9, 2021—Many of us in the accounting profession are no doubt buried behind the tidal wave of accounting issues brought about by The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021. This includes PPP Second Draw Loans, PPP loan forgiveness, and The Employee Retention Credit, to name a few. NCCPAP continues to stay on top of these items, so please watch for our webinars, expert speakers, and continuing educational opportunities.
In addition to all of this, we are now addressing our regular seasonal work. With that comes our financial statement work and there are a whole host of changes, many of which are COVID-19 related. Let me highlight a few of them.
A topic on everyone’s mind is how the Paycheck Protection Loan should be presented on the financial statements. Furthermore, how, when, and in what manner should we present the forgiveness amount on the Income Statement or Statement of Cash Flows? What about the required disclosures for these loans, not to mention EIDL? While the AICPA has issued some guidance on these topics; nothing is currently codified and may never be. In addition, the guidance provides different paths a company might take which might be acceptable.
A second important item is ‘going concern’. This was a hard enough topic to deal with before COVID-19 and now has become even more difficult. The evaluation of going concern in these uncertain economic times is key. Disclosure is always important, as well as developing policies and procedures to properly evaluate going concern for your clients.
Another key topic is ‘revenue recognition’. The world of revenue recognition has been completely altered. In these times, clients have surely had to develop new and unique methods of getting revenue. Evaluation of this in connection with the new revenue recognition standard is critical.
And finally, we have the new ‘lease standard’. While the effective date has been delayed, it’s just around the corner. Are clients ready? This is not something that can wait until the last minute and will take a lot of system reprogramming. In addition, this will have an immediate impact on your clients’ bank covenants. Discussions with your clients’ lenders should begin as soon as possible.
With all of the above on the near-term horizon, our clients will rely on a CPA’s advisory services more than ever. As with most financial statement engagements, we are required to maintain independence. Given how intimately involved small business clients will want us to be with all of the above, this may prove difficult. As always…document, document, document!
We at NCCPAP are a national organization of practitioners helping practitioners, and we will get through these unprecedented times working together as one unified force!
The National Conference of CPA Practitioners (NCCPAP) is a professional organization comprised of Certified Public Accountants practicing in the United States. In addition to serving as a forum for education, networking, and community impact, NCCPAP also advocates for its clients. NCCPAP influences tax administration and tax policy by regularly meeting with Internal Revenue Service representatives, state taxing authorities, and elected officials. NCCPAP members represent over one million businesses and individual clients. The organization is headquartered in Woodbury, NY. For more information visit, www.NCCPAP.org.