Statement of responsibilities of auditors and audited bodies: Principal Local Authorities and Police Bodies

Ad hoc requests for auditors’ views

47. There may be occasions when audited bodies seek the views of auditors on the legality, accounting treatment or value for money of a transaction before embarking upon it. In such cases, auditors are as helpful as possible, but are precluded from giving a definite view in any case because auditors:

  • must not prejudice their independence by being involved in the decision-making processes of the audited body;
  • are not financial or legal advisers to the audited body; and
  • may not act in any way that might fetter their ability to exercise the special powers conferred upon them by statute.

48. In response to such requests, auditors can offer only an indication as to whether anything in the information available to them at the time of forming a view could cause them to consider exercising the specific powers conferred upon them by statute. Any response from auditors should not be taken as suggesting that the proposed transaction or course of action will be exempt from challenge in future, whether by auditors or others entitled to raise objection to it. It is the responsibility of the audited body to decide whether to embark on any action or transaction.

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