Accountants and auditors play a crucial watchdog function for the financial sector. They facilitate transparency, certify that financial statements accurately represent the financial condition of companies and help keep businesses and their executives honest. But with this great responsibility comes increased risk. Audited financial statements routinely inform business decisions and any deviation from established accounting standards can have devastating repercussions. As a result, when a business fails, falls on hard times, goes into bankruptcy or experiences some other catastrophic financial event, it is becoming more and more common for those who lost money – banks, creditors and investors – to look to the auditors to be made whole.
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