Professional Liability Advocate

Professional Liability Advocate

Peter J. Larkin (White Plains, NY)

Peter J. Larkin (White Plains, NY) Peter Larkin provides legal counsel and representation to accountants and accounting firms in connection with all aspects of their businesses. He is co-chair of Wilson Elser’s national Accountants practice. In addition to professional malpractice defense and commercial disputes, Peter’s practice encompasses risk management, ethics proceedings, and transactional matters involving accounting firms. He also represents businesses and banking institutions in a wide array of commercial disputes.

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Accountants M&A Alert: New AICPA Guidance on Transfer of Client Files

Posted in Accountants, Professional Liability
If you are selling or acquiring an accounting practice, you need to read the AICPA’s new guidance “Transfer of Files and Return of Client Records in Sale, Transfer, Discontinuance or Acquisition of a Practice,” which clarifies the obligations of the selling and the acquiring parties and explains how to deal with clients that do not… Continue Reading

Deloitte’s $500 Million Sentence

Posted in Professional Liability
We have assisted many accounting firms in the creation or revision of their client engagement letters. They very often question the need to include certain provisions intended to limit their liability to their clients and sometimes ask whether the provision is even enforceable. Whether the provision will be enforced is uncertain due to the very… Continue Reading

CPAs Need to Sharpen Awareness of IT Threats

Posted in Accountants
In the most recent “North America Top Technology Initiatives Survey Results,” CPAs responding to the poll ranked “securing the IT environment” as the number-one priority, followed by “managing and retaining data,” “ensuring privacy,” “managing IT risks and compliance,” and “preventing and responding to computer fraud.” The top five poll results all relate to securing, managing… Continue Reading

Don’t “Dabble” in Employee Benefit Plan Auditing

Posted in Accountants
For years, U.S. Department of Labor Chief Accountant Ian Dingwall has been advising employee benefit plan administrators to avoid using auditors who “dabble” in employee benefit plans. During this period, the DOL has consistently found that approximately one third of the employee benefit plan audits the agency reviews are deficient, and points to the firms… Continue Reading

Revisiting Restrictive Covenants

Posted in Accountants
Accounting firms often use post-employment restrictive covenants to prevent their clients and employees from being poached by departing partners and employees. As the number of accountants moving between firms has started to pick up again, so too has the number of disputes concerning the enforceability of the restrictive covenants those accountants signed at their former… Continue Reading

Sidestepping The Advertising Trap

Posted in Accountants
In a recent Wilson Elser Client Alert, “A Trap for the Unwary Advertiser ,” Tom Manisero (Partner-White Plains) discusses a practice that can trip up accountants looking to use their current client list as a starting point for their advertising. While your clients undoubtedly can be fertile ground for expanding your practice, you have to… Continue Reading

Accounting Fraud Never Sleeps—and the SEC Plans to Prove It.

Posted in Accountants
Earlier this year, the New York Times reported that the SEC was “bringin’ sexy back” to accounting investigations. That’s probably not good news for those auditing public companies. In 2002, “accounting scandals” became a household phrase as the accounting frauds at Enron, WorldCom and others came to light. Although accounting fraud was nothing new, the… Continue Reading