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Canadian Tax FAQs – What Is A Trust Audit?



What is a Trust Audit?

Some professionals such as Real Estate Agents and Lawyers keep trust accounts (funds held on behalf of their clients). There are special accounting rules for these trust accounts and a Trust Audit is designed to ensure compliance with these accounting rules.

Discussion:

A Trust Report is required to be prepared each fiscal year by your Chartered Professional Accountant to report the findings of the Trust Audit. The relevant Professional Standards Regulation Board will provide a list of procedures to be followed to complete the annual Trust Audit. The Accountant will choose a sample of accounts to audit based on the guidelines provided and complete the required procedures on the sample chosen.
Some of the typical items to be confirmed are:

  • Payments from the trust account are authorized and supporting documentation for the payment is on file
  • Trust accounts are reconciled monthly and reconciliation reports are reviewed and approved in a timely manner
  • Monthly statements are provided in a timely manner to the clients and match the accounting records
  • Deposits received are deposited in a timely manner and recorded correctly in the accounting records
  • Interest is dealt with per the regulated standards

Any findings of non-compliance with the regulations laid out by the Professional Standards Regulation Board are reported in the Trust Report. The Trust Report is then sent to the appropriate Professional Standards Regulation Board for the Board to review and act upon if required.

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If you have any questions about your required Trust Audit, get in touch.

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Grant has been in the CA business since 1988, starting his own practice in 1994. His tax expertise encompasses tax planning, international tax issues, and Scientific Research and Development tax credits. He is a graduate of the CICA In-Depth Tax Course and in 2012, Grant received the CA Community Service Award and the Scout Leader Medal.

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