Five more SMSF auditors disqualified

ASIC disqualified five SMSF auditors and imposed additional conditions on three SMSF auditors between April 1 to June 30 for breaches of their obligations.

This included breaches of auditing and assurance standards, independence requirements, registration conditions, or because the regulator was satisfied the individual was not a fit and proper person to remain registered.

The latest ASIC action was in addition to the cancellation of 413 SMSF auditors as part of its recent compliance program.

“In the last year, ASIC has acted against 26 SMSF auditors who failed to meet the independence and auditing standards, or whose conduct called into question the integrity of SMSF audits,” said ASIC Commissioner Danielle Press (pictured above).

“The SMSF sector holds more than $865 billion in assets in over 600,000 funds and it is crucial that SMSF auditors comply with their regulatory obligations. ASIC will continue to take action where the conduct of SMSF auditors is inadequate.”

Paul Barry, Stephen Funder, Bruce Jones, Gregory Leggett and Malcolm Orman have been disqualified from being SMSF auditors, with their names listed on ASIC’s public banned and disqualified register. They are no longer eligible to reapply for registration. Funder has asked the Administrative Appeals Tribunal to review the disqualification decision.

Toby Dodd, Mark Gregson and Clayton Lawrence had additional conditions imposed on their SMSF auditor registration.

“Conditions are specific to the auditor (see the SMSF Auditor register), and can require undertaking additional professional development, having independent reviews of SMSF audit files and audit tools, templates and methodology, and notifying their professional accounting association of the additional conditions,” ASIC said in a statement.

Seven SMSF auditors had been referred to ASIC by the Australian Taxation Office, while the official information about one SMSF auditor was disclosed to ASIC by another Australian government body.

To check whether their auditor is registered, suspended, or has conditions imposed on their registration, SMSF trustees and members can search ASIC’s SMSF Auditor register.

Further information can be found on ASIC’s website and in Regulatory Guide 243.

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