Accountant Malpractice Expert
Independent auditors play a vital role in our capital markets system. A third party opinion on the representations made in a company’s financial statements serves as assurance of accuracy and transparency, and builds investor confidence.
While erroneous or even fraudulent financial reporting can occur even with a well conducted audit, the failure to comply with professional standards will typically make the auditors vulnerable. An understanding of auditing standards and auditor liability is thus needed to either defend or prosecute accounting professionals.
Click on the link to read more about our auditor liability expert services, including cases involving the interpretation of U.S. GAAP and IFRS, white collar defense, financial reporting fraud, securities fraud, complex securitizations, or derivatives disputes.
Dr. Barry Jay Epstein, CPA, CFF, is a leading authority on auditor liability and financial reporting who has consulted and/or testified as an expert witness for plaintiff and defense attorneys in more than 140 cases involving securities litigation, white collar defense, financial fraud, CPA liability, and CPA malpractice.
Dr. Epstein served as the author of The Handbook of Accounting and Auditing, published by RIA, the tax and accounting business of Thomson Reuters, from 1998 through 2013. He also served as the lead author of 26 annual editions of Wiley GAAP (1985 through 2010), 14 annual editions of Wiley IFRS (1997 through 2010), and several other works on U.S. GAAP and international accounting standards, all published by John Wiley & Sons.
Dr. Epstein served as an accounting and auditing expert for the Securities and Exchange Commission in the “Potts decision,” which established that the QC or review partner has the same exact level of responsibility for the audit (and hence for audit failure) as does the audit partner.
The case was upheld by the full commission and then appealed to the Circuit Court in Minneapolis (where the audit failure occurred), which upheld the SEC verdict. Dr. Epstein’s testimony was specifically cited as a factor in the case outcome. Read the Initial Decision in the case Potts v. SEC, which contains multiple references to Dr. Epstein’s expert opinion.
Epstein + Nach LLC can help you prepare and explain complex accounting matters to the trier of fact in several ways. We are available to:
- Screen thousands of documents quickly to identify crucial evidence
- Draft cross-examination questions that are specific to your case
- Provide technical on-site guidance during depositions
- Prepare persuasive accounting exhibits for courtroom visualization
Read our Latest Auditor Liability Articles and White Papers
Auditor Liability and Professional Skepticism: A Look at Lehman Brothers and MF Global, White Paper, June 2015
“Common Auditor Failures: Overlooking Insolvency Risk and Earnings Manipulations,” by Barry Jay Epstein, CPA, Westlaw Journal Professional Liability, Volume 25, Issue 1, July 2015.
“Canaries Gone AWOL (Part 2): Why Aren’t Auditors Helping their Clients by Flagging the Need for Restructurings?” by Barry Jay Epstein, IS Chartered Accountant, published by the Institute of Singapore Chartered Accountants (ISCA), May 2015.
“Do Accountants Face Risk as Fiduciaries?” by Barry Jay Epstein, InsuranceThoughtLeadership.com, April 30, 2015.
“Canaries Gone AWOL (Part 1): Why Aren’t Auditors Helping their Clients by Flagging the Need for Restructurings?” by Barry Jay Epstein, IS Chartered Accountant, published by the Institute of Singapore Chartered Accountants (ISCA), April 2015.
“Accounting for Leases: A White Paper on Significant Financial Reporting Changes for Lessees and Lessors,” by Dr. Barry Jay Epstein, CPA, CFF.