Six SMSF auditors penalised

SMSF auditors

ASIC has taken action to remove five SMSF auditors from practice and imposed conditions on another auditor following referrals from the ATO.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has taken action against six SMSF auditors, resulting in five no longer being registered and one having additional conditions imposed on their registration.

The corporate watchdog stated it took the actions, between the period of 29 June to 30 September, after five of the auditors were referred by the ATO and one auditor did not comply with conditions imposed by ASIC on their SMSF auditor registration.

“These actions resulted from breaches of obligations, including auditing and assurance standards, independence requirements and registration conditions, or because ASIC was satisfied the individual was not a fit and proper person to remain registered,” the regulator stated.

Specifically, it stated it disqualified Khanh Huynh, of Leumeah, Sydney, from being an SMSF auditor in June 2022 for breaching auditor independence requirements by auditing SMSFs for which he or his staff prepared the financial statements and receiving a large proportion of his fees from SMSF audit clients from one source.

The regulator also stated that, among other things, Huynh failed to lodge with ASIC four SMSF auditor annual statements and did not comply with requests from and engage with ASIC and the ATO, including not providing two audit files for review.

It also disqualified Hafiz Saroha, of South Granville, Sydney, from being an SMSF auditor in August 2022 for failing to make adequate auditor independence assessments, failing to comply with auditing and assurance standards by not obtaining or documenting sufficient appropriate audit evidence when required and failing to lodge with ASIC two SMSF auditor annual statements, as well as not appointing an auditor, not lodging returns on time and not correcting returns with errors in a timely manner in regard to his own SMSF.

Also disqualified in August was Janette Townshend, of Templestowe, Melbourne, for auditing a fund where her spouse was a member and a director of the corporate trustee. Townshend has applied to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal for the disqualification decision to be reviewed.

Conditions were imposed on the SMSF auditor registration of Yaw Boadi, of Constitution Hill, Sydney, in September 2022 after failing to obtain audit evidence in relation to the valuation of an investment in unlisted shares, recoverability of a loan, verifying property title and ensuring property leases were at arm’s length.

ASIC cancelled the SMSF auditor registration of Brian Carroll, of Miranda, Sydney, in July 2022 for failing to lodge with ASIC an SMSF auditor annual statement and for not meeting the additional conditions imposed on his registration in April 2022.

The regulator also cancelled the SMSF auditor registration of Linda Ingham, of St Kilda, Melbourne, in August 2022 for failing to lodge five SMSF auditor annual statements with ASIC.


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