Accountants malpractice defense has been one of the long standing specialties within our professional liability practice. Over the past thirty-five years, the firm has acted as defense counsel in over 400 accountants malpractice cases in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut state and federal courts. Our firm also represents accountants in disciplinary proceedings before the New York State Education Department, the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants and the AICPA.
The practice of defending accountants has been diverse. A large number of cases have involved financial statement preparation (compilations, reviews and audits) as well as tax, financial and estate planning, consulting and transactional services. Lawsuits against accountants based upon purported failures in financial statement presentation and employee defalcations have been extremely active areas for us. We have extensive knowledge of the professional standards applicable to financial statement preparation, including generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) and generally accepted auditing standards (GAAS), the audit process (e.g., engagement strategy, planning, controls, procedures, evidence, tests, cost, accrual and materiality concepts), the auditor-client relationship, the auditor’s interest in the client’s accounting and administrative controls, the auditor’s report letter, the interface of professional ethics, professional responsibility and legal liability and the critical importance of the auditor’s work papers and other documents essential for the defense of an accountants malpractice action.