Accounting and Auditing Technical Help - Questions and Answers

Accounting or auditing matters including attestation engagements Accounting and review services

The AICPA Auditing and Accounting Technical Hotline provides non-authoritative guidance on accounting, auditing, attestation, and SSARS standards. Please note that Technical Hotline staff's responses reflect only the staff's opinions in light of the particular circumstances described by the inquirer and should not be viewed as an official position of the AICPA. Official positions of the AICPA are determined through certain specific committee procedures, due process, and extensive deliberation. The views expressed by Technical Hotline staff in response to technical questions submitted to the Technical Hotline are expressed for the purposes of deliberation, providing member services, and other purposes, but not for the purposes of providing accounting services or practicing public accounting..

Application of generally accepted accounting principles is the responsibility of a company's management. As such, the Technical Hotline staff is prohibited from making subjective judgments for constituents or acting as an arbitrator on any issue (for example, a dispute between a company and its auditor).

How do I submit my question?

Questions may be submitted electronically by filling out the Technical Inquiry Form or by calling the Technical Hotline at 877.242.7212.

The following steps should be used as a guide in forming and submitting your question.

  1. Obtain and read the applicable authoritative (FASB, and /or AICPA) literature.
  2. Formulate your question and discuss with the most senior accountants in your organization (typically the controller or chief accounting officer of a company or the partners, technical advisory partners, or national office of a public accounting firm).
  3. Discuss the question with your independent auditors; if applicable (your auditors should request the assistance of their technical advisory partners or national office if necessary).

    If after consulting with your most senior accountants and independent auditors you still need clarifying guidance, complete the AICPA's Technical Inquiry Form. Within 30 minutes you should receive an acknowledgement that will include an incident number, for example 081218-000227 and state "Thank you for contacting the AICPA Accounting and Auditing Hotline team. We have received your inquiry, and will respond as soon as possible." If you do not receive this acknowledgement your email did not go through and you must resubmit your inquiry.

Please Note: Submission of incomplete information may result in a request for additional information and/ or a delay in response (for example, if the views of your auditor's or other parties that you consulted are not documented in the space provided or if you have not cited the appropriate AICPA or FASB literature or provided an AICPA member number). Should you have any further questions about how to fill out the AICPA Technical Inquiry Form, please call Paul Von Bevern at 919.402.4531.

When can I expect an answer to my question?

You can expect a response within 24 hours, but it may take longer depending on staff availability and the nature of your question. The Technical Hotline staff addresses inquiries in the order that they are received.

How will I get an answer to my question?

The staff will respond via telephone. Please note that the Technical Hotline staff is prohibited from issuing a formal written response to your technical inquiry.

Access the Technical Inquiry Form