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Our first COVID-19 related claim against a CPA Client

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by Rickard Jorgensen, FCII, ARM, ACIArb. We have been scanning the metaphorical horizon to see how the pandemic is impacting CPAs and generally, although many firms have seen a depression or shift in fees to later in the year, there have been very fee actual professional liability claims against CPAs. However, there is always an […]

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The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act – Good Faith Certification

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By Rickard Jorgensen, FCII, ARM, ACIArb The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act recently signed into law contains an important provision known as the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) designed to provide relief to small businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic. The PPP directs $349 billion towards job retention and business operating expenses designed […]

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Section 7216 – requesting client permissions

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By Rickard Jorgensen, FCII, ARM, ACIArb We would recently approached by a  policyholder about affirmative consent requirements imposed by IRS regulations under Internal Revenue Code section 7216. Under the code, a tax return preparer is subject to criminal penalties under section 7216 if the preparer “knowingly or recklessly” discloses or uses tax return information. A […]

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Engagement Letter Defense Rejected

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This month, guest blogger Seth L. Laver of Goldberg Segalla writes about a recent legal development concerning the use of engagement letters in the defense of accountants’ malpractice claims. ——————————————————————————————————————— We often write about the importance of engagement letters, in fact we have an entire sub-category devoted to engagement letter defenses. That’s because the engagement […]

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Limiting Malpractice through Scope of Engagement

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by guest bloggers Jennifer H. Feldscher and Seth L. Laver. A recent NY Appellate Division decision serves as another reminder of the importance of carefully defining the scope of engagement in an engagement letter. This is because, under New York law, an attorney may not be held liable for failing to act outside the scope […]

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Using Indemnification Clauses to protect your firm

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by Rickard Jorgensen, FCII, ARM, ACIArb All CPAs know that a signed engagement letter is a crucial tool in the defense of a professional negligence lawsuit. The engagement letter memorializes the terms of the engagement, details what services you are performing and more importantly, the services you are NOT offering (i.e. you will not detect […]

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Using the engagement letter to reduce cyber liability exposure

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By Nick Matarazzo In this digital age, accountants are being forced to deal with all sorts of cyber threats. A well-worded engagement letter can help guard you against a cyber-related liability claim from your client and minimize your overall firm liability. Even if you are careful about your clients’ data, you may still be held […]

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How To Minimize The Damage Of Lawsuits

by Rickard Jorgensen, FCII, ACIArb., ARM   Things Beyond Your Control That Precipitate Lawsuits With the advent of the computer era and information age, the cultural and business climate of the nation, and world, has shifted. Businesses have become more complicated, as attitudes sanction greater and greater risk-taking. No longer are there sure-fire lifetime jobs […]

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An overview of the client screening process

By Rickard Jorgensen, FCII, ACIArb, ARM Extracted from Evaluating Clients – Engagement risk screening for CPA firms. There are solid reasons for screening new clients.  Many involve not getting paid, exposure to lawsuits or even the stress related to difficult individuals.  Effective client screening can avoid these problems. Implementing a formal screening process is the […]

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The Risk of Being Consistent

(How Claims Arise From Following Past Work and not Our Independent Judgment) By Ralph G. Picardi, Esq. “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds….” When Ralph Waldo Emerson penned those words in his essay, Self-Reliance, almost 175 years ago I think it is fair to say he didn’t have accounting risk management in […]

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