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Home > Ethics > Ethics Standards for Michigan CPAs
Prerequisite
None
Knowledge Level
Basic
Copyright 2012

Publication Date
October, 2012
Ethics Standards for Michigan CPAs
Introduction Organization Learning Objectives Author Bios
Title: Ethics Standards for Michigan CPAs
Prerequisite: None
Advance Preparation: None
Knowledge Level: Basic
Subject Matter Area: Behavioral Ethics, Regulatory Ethics
Date of Publication: August 2012
Copyright © 2012 by Bisk Education, Inc. All rights reserved.
Recommended CPE Credits: 4 QAS/Registry (based on 50-minute hour)
Expiration Date: One year from date of receipt to complete program and submit quizzer to obtain credit
Passing Grade for Quizzer: 70 percent or higher


With the number of negative, but high-profile cases gaining attention in recent years, it is imperative that practitioners be well-versed and clear as to their ethical responsibilities to the public that they serve. This program opens with the discussion of what is meant by ethics and the factors that influence ethical behavior. To keep discussions flowing, the text provides examples to illustrate ethical decision-making points. This program probes the philosophical reasoning methods that can help resolve ethical conflicts in a morally appropriate way, and explains how the interests of stakeholders affect ethical decisionmaking in business and accounting. The author also reviews the various rules and requirements that CPAs need to be in compliance with, including: the AICPA Principles and Rules of Conduct, the requirements of the Michigan State Board of Accountancy, the Statements on Standards for Tax Services, and the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board rules.

This course meets the Michigan Board of Accountancy requirement to have four (4) hours of ethics biannually.

Biskalert

The AICPA Professional Ethics Division issued Proposed Revised and New Interpretations and Proposed Deletion of Ethics Rulings on June 29, 2012. Comments to the exposure draft will be considered by PEEC at its October 25-26, 2012, open meeting and final changes to Interpretation 101-3 under Rule 101 are expected to take effect subsequent to that meeting. Additional changes pending affect Rules 501 and 502 and ethics rulings under Rule 102, 501, and 502. The exposure draft can be reviewed at:

http://www.aicpa.org/interestareas/professionalethics/community/exposuredrafts/
downloadabledocuments/2012juneomnibusproposalaicpaprofessionalethicsdivision.pdf

Use of Materials

DVD
The user should begin by watching the DVD segment, if any, for the chapter before reading the text. The user may wish to make notes of the most important concepts and any terms that are new. Next, the user should review the learning objectives at the beginning of the chapter and read the chapter. The user should work through each of the examples. It may be helpful to highlight important material and/or to make additional notes. Next, the user should complete the study questions at the end of the chapter and review the answers. If the user answers a study question incorrectly, s/he should review the section of the text that is indicated at the end of the explanation to the study question to assure comprehension of the material. The user should review the learning objectives once more to consider achievement of the objectives. After the user has finished watching the DVD and reading the text and working through the study questions, s/he may wish to review her/his notes and any sections of the text or DVD that were difficult. When the user is ready, s/he should complete the quizzer. Reviewing notes periodically will increase retention of the material.

Online
The user should begin by watching the streamed video segment, if any, or listening to the streamed audio segment, if any, for the chapter before reading the text. The user may wish to make notes of the most important concepts and any terms that are new. Next, the user should review the learning objectives at the beginning of the chapter and read the chapter. The user should work through each of the examples. After the user has studied each chapter, s/he should click on the link at the left to complete the interactive study questions. If the user answers a study question incorrectly, s/he should review the section of the text that is indicated at the end of the explanation to the study question to assure comprehension of the material. The user should review the learning objectives once more to consider achievement of the objectives. After the user has finished watching the streamed video, if any, or listening to the streamed audio, if any, and reading the text and working through the study questions, s/he may wish to review her/his notes and any sections of the text or video/audio, if any, that were difficult. When the user is ready, s/he should click on the link to the left to complete the quizzer. The user's CPE certificate will be provided immediately upon successful completion of the quizzer.

This program is divided into six (6) chapters and an appendix.

Chapter 1 focuses on the definition of, and influences on, ethical behavior and how it is achieved using a moral development model.

Chapter 2 explains a CPA's responsibilities to the public as described in the AICPA Principles of Professional Conduct and philosophical reasoning methods that can assist in making ethical decisions.

Chapter 3 describes the Michigan State Board of Accountancy rules.

Chapter 4 examines the bedrock standards of the profession—independence, integrity and objectivity—that exist in the AICPA Rules of Professional Conduct.

Chapter 5 covers other AICPA ethics rules.

Chapter 6 explains the rules of professional conduct as they relate to providing tax services and the PCAOB rules concerning ethics and independence.

The Appendix contains a bibliography.

Helpful Guidance

Throughout this program, the user will find explanations and discussions regarding some of the issues that often face practitioners. In order to enhance the user's comprehension of the material and highlight important practical considerations, this program includes the following designations:

A Biskalert is intended to warn the practitioner of a particular situation that may require action or other consideration by the client or the practitioner on behalf of the client.

A Biskplan offers a strategy/discussion point when a practitioner is faced with a particular issue or situation.

A Biskpoint presents analysis or commentary that attempts to explain or clarify authoritative guidance.

A Bisktip provides practical advice that may be used to help improve client service or service to the practitioner's organization.

Upon successful completion of this program, the user should be able to:

  • Describe the relationship between following the law and ethical behavior

  • Discuss how virtue influences one's ability to reason ethically

  • Explain how one's moral development influences ethical decision-making

  • Discuss the role of integrity in ethical decision-making by CPAs

  • Identify the characteristics of the accounting profession and the regulatory system for CPAs

  • Describe the role and responsibilities of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board

  • Discuss ethical considerations for accounting professionals

  • Identify and describe the Principles of the AICPA Code of Professional Conduct

  • Explain the rules of conduct of the Michigan State Board of Accountancy

  • Identify the requirements to obtain qualifying continuing education and peer review

  • Describe the administrative rules that pertain to the licensing of CPAs, practice permits, the use of the CPA title, and practice privileges

  • Discuss the provisions of the Occupational Code (Act 299)

  • Discuss the components of independence, the risk-based approach to analyzing independence, and the independence rules of the AICPA

  • Identify the restrictions on providing nonattest services to audit and attest clients

  • Describe the circumstances when independence may be impaired because of relationships between an attest client and its affiliates

  • Explain the ethical responsibilities and obligations for CPAs to avoid subordinating professional judgment to that of a supervisor

  • Explain a CPA's ethical obligations to perform professional services with competence and to follow required standards of practice including GAAP

  • Discuss the confidentiality obligation of CPAs including when using a third-party service provider

  • Describe when client provided records, member-prepared records, member work products, and member working papers should be provided to the client

  • Explain the application of other rules of conduct including when contingent fees and commissions can be accepted; advertising and solicitation requirements; and restrictions on the form and name of an organization practicing public accounting

  • Describe the standards for recommending a tax return position and issuing an opinion to reflect the results of tax planning services

  • Discuss when the provision of tax services impairs auditor independence under PCAOB rules

  • Discuss when audit committee pre-approval is required before providing professional services to an audit client

 

Steven M. Mintz, PhD, is a professor at California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, CA. His expertise is in ethics and he teaches a course in accounting ethics at Cal Poly. Dr. Mintz is the holder of a PhD in Accounting and International Business from George Washington University, an MBA in Management Sciences from Syracuse University, and a BS in Accounting from Long Island University. He was certified in New York State but no longer practices as a licensed CPA. Dr. Mintz writes a popular ethics blog under the name, Ethics Sage. The website is: http://www.ethicssage.com. He has been interviewed by publications such as The New York Times because of his expertise in ethics. He has published about 30 papers in business and accounting ethics and made dozens of presentations on ethics topics to academic and professional groups. His textbook, co-authored with Roselyn Morris, Ethical Obligations and Decision-Making in Accounting: Text and Cases (2nd edition), was published by McGraw-Hill Irwin in 2011. The book is used in about 40 colleges and universities in the U.S. and internationally. Dr. Mintz serves on the Ethics Curriculum Committee of the California Board of Accountancy that is charged with identifying 10-units of ethics education to be part of the state's 150-hour educational requirement. (Author/Speaker)

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