Granting Access to Prospective Purchasers Investors or Lenders

Basis for Granting Access


Owners of an entity seeking to sell their investment, or entities seeking further equity or loan funding from third parties, often believe their objectives might be facilitated by requesting the entity’s auditor to make available their audit working papers to third parties. As such a request potentially exposes an auditor to significant legal risk, access to audit working papers for this purpose necessitates the following matters be considered by the auditor before access is given:

  1. whether to obtain legal advice; and;
  2. ensure the auditor’s client and third parties, to whom access is to be given, confirm and acknowledge, in favour of the auditor:
    1. that no representation is made about the accuracy or completeness of the audit working papers or any additional information provided in connection with that access, or of any individual amounts, accounts, balances, transactions or disclosures, or the accuracy or completeness of other information included in the audit working papers or any additional information;
    2. that the auditor is not responsible to the audit client and/or other third parties for any loss suffered in connection with access, to or use of, the audit working papers; and
    3. that the auditor will receive an indemnity against any loss, action, liability, claim, suit, demand, claim for costs or expenses or any other proceeding that the auditor may suffer arising out of, or in connection with, granting access to the audit working papers and the additional information given in connection with that access.