New FRC standard will improve assurance quality

By James Barbour, Director of Technical Policy

31 July 2015

James Barbour, Director, Technical Policy, summarises the key points in ICAS' response to the Financial Reporting Council's (FRC) proposed new assurance standard.

ICAS welcomes the Financial Reporting Council's (FRC) proposed new assurance standard Providing assurance on client assets to the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

ICAS believes the FRC's proposals will formalise the work already being undertaken by many firms preparing client asset reports. 

We are supportive of including all the requirements within a single Standard, thus providing practitioners with a single, comprehensive source of requirements and related guidance.

We also consider the extent of the requirements in the Standard to be proportionate to Client Asset Assurance Engagements.

We also believe that:

  • The CASS (Client Assets Sourcebook) engagement leader should be subject to engagement quality control review throughout the course of the engagement; and
  • Firms undertaking such engagements should have to comply with the FRC Ethical Standards for Auditors (concerning the integrity, objectivity and independence of the auditor) and also the ethical pronouncements established by the CASS auditor's professional body (e.g. ICAS Code of Ethics).

Furthermore, ICAS is supportive of:

  • The inclusion of training requirements for staff in various aspects of CASS audits to ensure that the engagement team is sufficiently equipped and skilled to perform this type of work; and
  • The FRC's suggested approach in relation to a firm's reporting of deficiencies in internal controls identified during such an engagement.

View the ICAS response

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  • Consultations and responses
  • Audit and Assurance

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