The ACNC works closely with organisations that set accounting and auditing standards, particularly on matters relating to the charities and not-for-profit sector.

The Australian Accounting Standards Board (AASB) is the Australian Government agency responsible for developing, issuing and maintaining accounting standards.

Accounting standards set out the required accounting treatment for particular types of transactions and events.

There are also accounting interpretations which specify the requirements of standards in relation to particular transactions or events. These accounting requirements affect the preparation and presentation of a charity’s financial statements.

Recent changes to accounting standards

Changed disclosure requirements for not-for-profits preparing Special Purpose Financial Statements (SPFS) took effect for annual reporting periods ending on or after 30 June 2020.

More information on the changes and their implications is available on the Australian Accounting Standards Board website. This includes a high level summary to aid understanding of these new disclosure requirements.

In addition, the following accounting standards took effect for annual reporting periods beginning on or after 1 January 2019:

The introduction of these standards meant that the revenue and income recognition contained in AASB 1004 Contributions and AASB 118 Revenue are no longer applicable.

Charities and not-for-profits should also note amendments to AASB 9 Financial instruments and AASB 16 Leases

The ACNC has developed general guidance on how some of the changed standards may affect common aspects of charities' accounting.

The Australian Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (AUASB) is the Australian Government agency responsible for developing, issuing and maintaining auditing and assurance standards.

Auditing standards set out the requirements and provide application and other explanatory material on the responsibilities of the auditor and the assurance practitioner when undertaking an audit or review of the financial report.

The standards also set out the requirement of the form and content of the audit or review report. The ACNC Act specifies that a review or audit must be undertaken in accordance with the auditing standards.

The Accounting Professional & Ethical Standards Board (APESB) is an independent, national body that sets the code of ethics and professional standards with which accounting professionals who are members of CPA Australia, Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand or Institute of Public Accountants must comply.

Recent changes to standards

APESB issued a restructured APES 110 Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants (including independence Standards) (Restructured Code), which took effect from 1 January 2020.

For more information, including supporting material for the Restructured Code, refer to the APESB Basis for Conclusion and the APESB's Mapping Table.