Auditing Employee Benefit Plans Self-Study Webinar (10 Hours)


Audits of employee benefit plans are among the leading causes of AICPA ethics investigations. With the increase in DOL investigations and changing peer review requirements, employee benefit plans are becoming an area of focus and risk. Avoid unwittingly adding your company or firm—and yourself—to the list of tarnished reputations. This self-study webinar will enable you to:

  • Perform an efficient and effective audit in accordance with GAAS
  • Ensure that the plan’s financial statements comply with GAAP, ERISA and DOL regulations
  • Understand auditors’ responsibilities for Form 5500
  • Avoid common pitfalls
  • Stay abreast of the current and/or upcoming changes

To develop the knowledge and skills to plan and conduct audits of employee benefit plans efficiently and in accordance with GAAS, as well as various government regulations. You will gain an understanding of the auditor’s responsibilities and special reporting requirements.

  • Audit planning and risk assessment
    – Understanding the control environment
    – Substantive analytics
    – Using a service organization (SSAE No. 16) report
  • Review ERISA and DOL regulations
  • Form 5500
  • Avoiding common errors
  • Assessing the level of testing for:
    – Investments
    – Contributions
    – Benefit payments
    – Payroll
    – Participant data
  • Financial statement presentation and disclosures
  • Current accounting and auditing update

Identify the financial relationships an auditor is allowed to have with an audit client without jeopardizing his or her independence from the audit client

Identify the characteristics of the auditor’s communication with those charged with governance

Identify employee benefit plan areas that represent particular audit risk

Identify the best practice materiality threshold for a terminating employee benefit plan

Identify the appropriate risk assessment procedures to provide a basis for the identification and assessment of risks of material misstatement

Recognize the components of an entity’s internal control

Recognize significant risks associated with defined contribution plans

Recognize significant risks associated with defined benefit plans

Recognize the role of analytical procedures performed as risk assessment procedures in the planning of the audit

Recognize what types of intentional misstatements are relevant to the auditor

Recognize the conditions generally conducive to fraud

Identify the auditor’s responsibilities when using the work of a specialist

Identify the role of SOC 1 reports in the audit of an employee benefit plan

Identify the audit objectives in a full scope audit of investments

Identify general procedures in a full scope audit of investments

Identify audit procedures when testing participant loans

Identify audit procedures when testing payroll

Identify the audit objectives when testing contributions from the employee and employer

Recognize audit objectives when testing benefit payments

Recognize the appropriate tests for plan administrative expenses

Recognize the necessary characteristics of a plan’s actuary

Recognize the format of the statement of net assets available for benefits

Recognize the format of the statement of changes in net assets

Identify the components of a statement of benefit obligations for a health and welfare benefit plan

Identify the typical components of the significant accounting policies section of the financials for an employee benefit plan

Identify the references in the auditor’s report associated with the different types of employee benefit plans

Identify the limitation associated with a limited scope audit

Recognize changes to benefit plans under the SECURE Act

Recognize likely COVID-19 related considerations by the auditors of an employee benefit plan

Recognize the significance of the Department of Labor’s fiduciary standard

Identify the delayed effective date of SAS 136 due to concerns regarding COVID-19


Basic knowledge of auditing and financial accounting.


No advance preparation required.

Level of Knowledge: 


CPE Credit: 
NASBA Field of Study: