Ethics & Independence
Registered public accounting firms and their associated persons are required to comply with PCAOB ethics and independence rules and standards.
These rules have been adopted by the PCAOB and approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission.
- 3501 Definitions of Terms Employed in Section 3, Part 5 of the Rules
- 3502 Responsibility Not to Knowingly or Recklessly Contribute to Violations
- 3520 Auditor Independence
- 3521 Contingent Fees
- 3522 Tax Transactions
- 3523 Tax Services for Persons in Financial Reporting Oversight Roles
- 3524 Audit Committee Pre-approval of Certain Tax Services
- 3525 Audit Committee Pre-approval of Non-audit Services Related to Internal Control Over Financial Reporting
- 3526 Communication with Audit Committees Concerning Independence
The Interim Ethics and Independence Standards consist of:
- ET Section 101 - Independence
- ET Section 102 - Integrity and Objectivity
- ET Section 191 - Ethics Rulings on Independence, Integrity, and Objectivity
- ISB No. 2 Certain Independence Implications of Audits of Mutual Funds and Related Entities (PDF)
- ISB No. 3 Employment with Audit Clients (PDF)
- ISB Interpretation 99-1 Impact on Auditor Independence of Assisting Clients in the Implementation of FAS 133 (Derivatives) (PDF)
Past versions of the Interim Ethics and Independence Standards are available in the archive.
* In April 2003, the Board adopted certain preexisting standards as its interim standards. Pursuant to Rule 3500T, Interim Ethics Standards consist of ethics standards described in the AICPA’s Code of Professional Conduct Rule 102, and interpretations and rulings thereunder, as in existence on April 16, 2003, to the extent not superseded or amended by the Board.
Pursuant to Rule 3500T, Interim Independence Standards consist of independence standards described in the AICPA’s Code of Professional Conduct Rule 101, and interpretations and rulings thereunder, as in existence on April 16, 2003, to the extent not superseded or amended by the Board, and certain standards, and interpretations, of the Independence Standards Board, to the extent not superseded or amended by the Board.
As mentioned in Rule 3500T, the Board's Interim Independence Standards do not supersede the Commission's auditor independence rules. See Rule 2-01 of Reg. S-X, 17 C.F.R.§ 210.2-01. Therefore, to the extent that a provision of the Commission's rule is more restrictive – or less restrictive – than the Board's Interim Independence Standards, a registered public accounting firm must comply with the more restrictive rule.