Benkorp’s Assurance Review Service

The aim of the Assurance Review is to state whether anything has come to our attention that causes me to believe that the Financial Statements are not presented fairly, in all material respects.

Our steps to perform this service are:

  1. Request documentation or evidence to support or prove the account balances on your church Balance Sheet. This means to check that the assets and liabilities are correct or reflect reality. See below the list of initial information we require.
  2. Check that we have received all the initial documentation required.

Request Documentation not yet received

Benkorp will not begin our next steps until we have all the documentation requested

  1. Compare the documentation received with the year-end account balances on your church balance sheet.

Where there are variances, we will either or both as required:

  • request further information
  • Benkorp may provide assistance to create or obtain the information if required
  • encourage the church bookkeeper or accountant to update/correct the accounts where necessary
  • Benkorp may update/correct the accounts if required.
  1. Benkorp will also performs some other checks and ask other questions as required.
  2. When we are satisfied that nothing has come to our attention that causes me to believe that the Financial Statements are not presented fairly, in all material respects.
    Benkorp will Produce the Assurance Review Report with the profit and Loss report and Balance Sheet for the organisation. The church wardens/leaders/representative signed this document and then Benkorp signs this document

Background

All churches require that their accounts and financial statements are checked by an independent review process at least once every year.

Although this check has traditionally been provided through an Audit Report, there is an alternative available which provides a similar but reduced outcome – the Independent Assurance Practitioner’s Review Report.

An audit report is provided by an Auditor and the Independent Assurance Practitioner’s Review Report is provided by an Assurance Practitioner.

The background and rules for engagement and practices for the Assurance Practitioner are covered by Standard number ASRE 2400, the Australian Government’s Accounting Standards Review Board.

Explanation of Assurance Review
The difference between an assurance report and an audit report are:
• less detail checking of individually processed transactions
• fees are less expensive for the Assurance Practitioner than the Auditor

 

Comparison

Assurance

Audit

Meaning

Evaluation of the financial accounts
• to state that the accounts are free from material misstatement
• to state whether, on the basis of the procedures described, anything has come to the reviewer’s attention that gives cause to believe that the Financial Statements are not presented fairly, in all material respects

Systematic and technical
examination of the books/system of accounts,
2 objectives:
1. to determine whether the financial statement represents true and fair view
2. to detect if there are any errors or frauds, in the financial accounts of the client.
Requires checking (by sample) of transactions and supporting documentation

Assurance level

Moderate assurance

Reasonable assurance

Cost

Comparatively low

High

Church Board’s/Council‘s responsibility for the annual Financial Statements
The appropriate Boards or Councils of the church/parish are responsible for the preparation and fair presentation of the Financial Statements in accordance with their Constitution and related Rules. This responsibility includes establishing and maintaining internal controls relevant to the preparation of the Financial Statements that are free from material misstatement, whether due to fraud, error, selecting and applying appropriate accounting policies and making accounting estimates that are reasonable in the circumstances.

Limitations of Accounts Review & Audits
Because of the inherent limitations of an audit and accounts reviews, together with the inherent limitations of any system of internal control, there is an unavoidable risk that some material misstatement, fraud or irregularity may not be detected, even though the audit is properly planned and performed in accordance with Australian Auditing Standards. This is particularly the case in respect of receipts where the scope of an audit or review is restricted to the amounts recorded in the accounts of the church.

The Process of an Assurance Review as provided by Benkorp
1.  Benkorp requests specific information
2.  Board/Council provides the information as required
3.  Benkorp reviews the information provided and requests further information as required
4.  Board/Council provides the further information
5.  If required, corrections are made to the accounts by the church or Benkorp as agreed. Corrections made by Benkorp are chargeable*
6.  After corrections are completed Benkorp will provide an “Independent Assurance Practitioners Review Report”
7.  Designated officers of the Board/Council are to sign the financial reports and present to the Church’s AGM.

Fee
Benkorp’s fee for the accounts Assurance Review is $600 + GST and is payable within 14 days of the invoice date.

*Additional Fees excl GST
Benkorp can provide accounting corrections, assistance or training if required for additional fees of $135 per hour + GST

 

List of initial documentation required

Type of Account Documentation requested
Bank/Loan/Credit Card/term Deposit Accounts

Bank/Loan/Credit/Term Deposit card statements for ALL accounts

Bank Reconciliation if the year-end statement balance is different to the balance on your Balance Sheet

 

Investment Accounts Year-end/Total year Investment statement

Current Assets

–       Debtors/Accounts Receivables

–       Deposits Paid to Suppliers

–       Prepayments

–       Petty Cash

–       Inventory

Debtors/Accounts Receivables report

List of Deposits Paid to Suppliers and still outstanding

List of remaining Prepayments explain the Prepayments Balance

Petty Cash Reconciliation including the Float Balance

Record of Stock Take

Fixed Assets

–       Buildings

–       Contents

–       Land

Insurance or other Valuation documentation

Insurance Valuation or Fixed Asset/Depreciation Schedule

Current Land Valuation from the government Valuer General website*

Current Liabilities

–       Creditors/Accounts Payable

–       Superannuation payable

 

–       GST

 

 

–       PAYG Withholding Payable

–       Annual and LSL Leave Accruals/Provisions

 

–       Deposits Held from Customers

–       Donations Rec’d for Missions or others for on-payment

 

–       Benefits owing to Religious Practitioners/ministers

 

 

 

–       Accruals

–       Monies received for Future Events (eg camps)

 

Creditors/Accounts Payable Report

List of unpaid Superannuation at the end of the year and date it was paid – that equals the Superannuation Payable Balance

BAS for the last period of the year

GST Reconciliation explaining any difference between the BAS and GST account balance

BAS for the last period of the year

Reconciliation explaining any difference between the BAS and the PAYG account balance

A current reconciliation explaining the Annual and LSL Leave Accruals/Provisions for each employee

List of Deposits Received from to Customers and still outstanding

List of donations received for missions or others that have not yet been paid to the missions or others at  year-end

Statement from the applicable minister stating the balance is correct. NB if there are separate bank accounts for these, the bank balance should equal the related liability balance

List of Outstanding Accruals that explain the balance

List of Monies received for Future Events that occur in the year following – sorted and totalled by event

Restricted Funds

List of donations received for restricted purposes during the year

List of Payments made from Restricted Funds during the year

 

NB this is not an complete list and may vary with each client

*Click here for the NSW Valuer General’s website

Book your Assurance Review