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Peer Review

Schwartz, Platz & Associates, CPA - Sacramento
Has Successful Review by Peers


Schwartz Platz & Associates, CPA participates in the AICPA Peer Review Program, one of the AICPA-approved practice-monitoring programs. A firm participating in any of these programs must have an independent review of its accounting and auditing practice every three years. The review was conducted under the auspices of the California CPA Society following standards issued by the AICPA.

The peer review of Schwartz Platz & Associates, CPA was performed by another independent CPA firm who qualified under the program's requirements for service as a reviewer. The objective of the peer review is to determine whether a CPA firm has suitable quality control policies and procedures and is complying with them.

Schwartz Platz & Associates, CPA serves businesses, individuals, and nonprofit organizations throughout the Sacramento area. The firm provides a full range of audit, accounting, tax, consulting services and specializes in small businesses.

The AICPA is the national professional organization of CPAs with more than 330,000 members in public practice, industry, government and education. MCPA members are committed to the highest standards of quality, independence and ethics in their practice. In its continuing efforts to serve the public interest, the organization sets audit standards, upholds the profession's code of conduct, provides continuing professional education, administers peer review programs, and prepares and grades the Uniform CPA Examination.

A Brief History
In 1988, the members of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (MCPA) overwhelmingly approved a proposal that requires AICPA members in public practice to participate in a practice-monitoring program. With the adoption of this proposal, the AICPA implemented a peer review program of unprecedented scope in the CPA profession or any other. Peer review helps assure users of CPA services that their CPA firm measures up to the profession's high standards of professionalism and is committed to improving the quality of its practice.

What is Peer Review?
Carried out in conjunction with participating state CPA societies and overseen by the MCPA, the AICPA Peer Review Program requires CPAs to have a rigorous, outside review of their accounting and auditing practices once every three years. These reviews determine whether a firm has suitable quality control policies and procedures and is complying with them. Specifically, the reviews focus on the following:

  • How the firm implements independence requirements
  • How personnel are assigned
  • Provisions for consultation when technical assistance is required
  • How accounting and auditing engagements are performed and supervised
  • Hiring practices
  • Continuing professional education programs
  • Promotion of personnel
  • Obtaining and retaining clients
  • Internal inspection of the firm's work

The reviewers are licensed CPAs who are selected from among the members of the MCPA and who have demonstrated they possess current knowledge of applicable professional standards. During a review, an outside team independently selects a sample of a firm's engagements and assesses its work on those engagements. The team then reports back to the firm on its findings, making suggestions where improvements may be necessary, and provides the outcome of the review to the state CPA society administering the firm's review. If a review uncovers deficiencies, the state CPA society prescribes various corrective actions a firm must take or monitoring procedures to ensure a firm adheres to the profession's standards. In this way, the MCPA consistently receives updates on the quality of its members' work and the performance of CPA firms.

Firms with AICPA members who issue engagements under the Statements on Auditing Standards or examinations of prospective financial statements under the Statements on Standards for Attestation Engagements must have a system review.

How Clients Benefit
Participation in the AICPA Peer Review Program provides CPAs with the opportunity to learn new or improved ways to run their firms and improve client services. This may be as simple as identifying possible inefficiencies, or as broad as determining opportunities to better serve clients. Whatever the case, clients benefit because CPA services become more appropriate for their needs and responsive to the changing business environment. What1s more, clients can be sure their CPA firm measures up to the profession's high standards of quality and professionalism.

Peer review also keeps CPAs current on the latest standards and trends in accounting and auditing. This translates into more knowledgeable advice for those who rely on CPA services. Peer review offers the assurance your certified public accounting firm is committed to performing at the very highest level.

About the AICPA
With over 330,000 members, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants is the national professional organization of CPAs in public practice, business, industry, government, and education. AICPA members are committed to the highest standards of quality, independence and ethics in their practice. In its continuing effort to serve the public interest, the organization sets audit standards, upholds the profession1s code of ethics, provides continuing professional education, administers peer review programs, and prepares and grades the Uniform CPA Examination. The AICPA is the first national professional organization to be 1S09001-certified, in recognition of its quality management and assurance practices.