What are 'Generally Accepted Auditing Standards - GAAS'
Generally accepted auditing standards (GAAS) are a set of systematic guidelines used by auditors when conducting audits on companies' finances, ensuring the accuracy, consistency and verifiability of auditors' actions and reports.
BREAKING DOWN 'Generally Accepted Auditing Standards - GAAS'
By relying on GAAS, auditors can minimize the probability of missing material information. GAAS are divided into these main sections:
1) General standards
2) Standards of fieldwork
3) Standards of reporting
Each section is littered with requirements that the auditor and the subject company must meet. In short, an auditor must adequately plan the audit in advance, be independent of the client at all times, and always obtain reliable evidence. The companies must present their financial statements in accordance with GAAP, remain consistent in their reporting, and explicitly disclose all pertinent information.