In a series of articles, we outline some of the things you should know – or might like to know – regarding superannuation fund audits.
So far, we have looked at why your fund needs an audit (here) and who can be an auditor (here).
In this article, we look at what you – as a trustee of your fund – need to do to get your fund’s audit done.
What do I need to provide to my auditor?
Basically, lots of papers and reports. If you are going to have your audit done efficiently, you need to provide a stack of stuff.
Once you have an approved SMSF auditor, the audit process can begin.
Once it has begun, the auditor will require a variety of information from the trustees and members. It’s in your best interest to provide these in a timely and efficient manner in order to ensure that your SMSF auditor can complete their work on time. If you can get these pieces of information ready ahead of time and supply them proactively, its so much the better.
What you’ll need to provide can include (but might not be limited to) stuff on this checklist here (link to separate paper).
As you can see, it seems like a lot, right?
It doesn’t need to be an onerous process to bring all this together and it shouldn’t be. As long as you have good record keeping, all of this information will be relatively easy to collect together come audit time.
Apart from record keeping, there are a few other things you need to do:
- Appoint the SMSF auditor
The trustees of an SMSF (i.e. you, and anyone that you’ve set up the SMSF with) are required to appoint an auditor at least 45 days before the auditor’s report is due. The auditor’s report is usually due by the middle of May following the end of the financial year – so, for an audit for the 2018 year, the audit report is due by the middle of May 2019, and the auditor should be appointed by the end of March 2019.
2. Sign stuff
You will need to provide the auditor with an audit engagement letter that confirms your acceptance of the appointment and clearly states the scope of the financial audit and the compliance audit with the super laws. It should prevent any misunderstanding between the trustees and auditor about the nature and extent of the audit.
Your auditor should provide you with a letter to sign and return.
3. Sign more stuff
You will need to supply the auditor with a letter of representation, which states that the trustees believe the financial statements to be a fair representation and that the SMSF complies with superannuation laws.
Again, your auditor will probably provide you with a letter to sign and return.
4. Answer queries
You will also need to respond to any queries from the SMSF auditor within 14 days of getting the queries. That is not a lot of time. Keep good records and you should be fine
Next time – what happens if something goes wrong?
If you need any assistance with the SMSF audit process, call our registered SMSF Auditor Philip Ruth for a chat in our SMSF Ivanhoe office 03 9499 7444.
We love audit and we can help you.