Independence breaches lead to another SMSF auditor disqualification

Breaches of independence requirements has led to another SMSF auditor being disqualified by ASIC.

ASIC announced that it has disqualified Lindsay Malcolm Wells of Victoria from being an approved SMSF auditor.

“ASIC found that Mr Wells had breached the auditor independence requirements of APES 110 Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants in auditing his own fund, the fund of an immediate family member and a fund where he was the trustee,” said the regulator in a statement.

Independence issues, in particular auditors auditing their own fund or the SMSF of relatives, have been raised in a number of recent SMSF auditor disqualifications by ASIC.

ASIC Commissioner John Price said: “SMSF auditors play a fundamental role in promoting confidence in the SMSF sector so it is crucial that they adhere to ethical standards. ASIC will continue to take action where the conduct of SMSF auditors is inadequate.”

Information about Mr Wells was referred to ASIC by the ATO, as allowed for in the SIS Act.

SMSF trustees and members can check the registration of their SMSF auditor using ASIC’s SMSF auditor register, at connectonline.asic.gov.au.

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