DEFINITION of 'Piecemeal Opinion'

An auditor's assessment of the accuracy of a portion of a company's financial statements. An auditor might provide a piecemeal opinion in a situation where complete information is not available. Generally Accepted Accounting Principals (GAAP) no longer allow auditors to provide piecemeal opinions.

BREAKING DOWN 'Piecemeal Opinion'

When they were allowed, piecemeal opinions had to be extremely specific in order to be credible since many components of a company's financial statements are interrelated. For example, according to former SEC Chief Accountant Carman G. Blough, it might be possible to express a piecemeal opinion on the accuracy certain items listed on a company's balance sheet, but it would not be possible to express a piecemeal opinion on the balance sheet as a whole because of the balance sheet's relationship with other financial statements, such as the income statement.

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