Review engagement is the type of assurance engagement that auditors or professional accountants give a negative or limited level of assurance. Comparing to the positive or reasonable assurance given in an audit, the level of negative assurance in the review engagement is much lower.
In a review engagement, processional accountants do not give an affirmative opinion in the report like in an audit. They only give some assurance that the subject matters or financial statements look reasonable.
For example, in a review engagement on financial statements, the professional accountant may state in the report as “based on our review, nothing has come to our attention to indicate that the financial statements contain material misstatement”.
Likewise, the risk in this type of engagement is much higher than the risk in an audit. This is due to, in an audit engagement, auditors are required to reduce the audit risk to an acceptably low level; while, in a review engagement, the risk is usually only be reduced to a moderate level.
Review Engagement vs Audit
It may be easier to understand when we look at the difference between review engagement and audit as below:
|Review Engagement vs Audit
|Provide a negative or limited assurance
|Provide a positive assurance which is a higher level of assurance comparing to negative assurance
|Auditors or professional accountants do not give an opinion on financial statements or subject matters
|Auditors give an opinion on financial statements
|Usually state in the report as “nothing has come to our attention…”
|Usually state in the report as “In our opinion…”
|The risk is reduced to a moderate level
|The risk is reduced to an acceptably low level
|Auditors or professional accountants only need to review subject matters
|Auditors need to make examination on subject matters by obtaining sufficient appropriate evidence to form a basis for opinion