General Counsel & Trial Board 


    The General Counsel & Trial Board group is responsible for all legal related matters involving the Institute. They provide timely and accurate legal advice and counsel with respect to the Institute’s legal affairs, including proposed standards, contractual matters, employment issues, copyrights/trademarks and articles of legal significance. They continually evaluate the AICPA bylaws for changes and provide legal advice to Institute committees, serve/staff task forces as appropriate, interpret/write legislation, interface/provide support for Washington lobbying activities, draft/edit briefs filed by the Institute. In addition, they also support the activities of, and serve as counsel to, the AICPA Joint Trial Board, which adjudicates disciplinary charges against AICPA and state society members.

    Focus Areas

    • Joint Trial Board
    • Judiciary Subcommittee Relations
    • Amicus Briefs

    Joint Trial Board
    When a member of the Institute or a state CPA society is accused of violating or has been found by other regulators to have violated professional standards, the AICPA has a process by which members are subject to disciplinary action.  The Joint Trial Board administers this process.  They are responsible for providing enforcement of professional standards by adjudicating disciplinary charges against state society and AICPA members through a system of hearing panels.

    Judiciary Subcommittee Relations
    AICPA sponsors a program entitled “Financial Statements in the Courtroom” Conference to help judges better understand the use of financial information and financial statements in the courtroom. The Relations with the Judiciary Subcommittee draft the materials and teach the courses that are presented at this program. The judges receive an overview of the concepts of Generally Accepted Accounting Principles and Standards and information on assessing the validity of financial statements and the credentials and credibility of accountants and business valuation experts.

    Amicus Briefs
    The Institute participates as an amicus curiae (friend of the court) in cases in which it can provide an authoritative and persuasive source of reference on matters of intrinsic significance to the profession as a whole.  It is usually triggered by a request from a member or CPA firm. Such requests are directed to the Institute’s General Counsel who is responsible for drafting and filing all such briefs where it is determined that it is appropriate to do so.

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