Departmental Bulletin Paper 二重責任の原則再考
Reconsideration of "The Principle of Dual Responsibility"

朴, 大栄

This paper discusses "the principle of dual responsibility," one of the basic principles in auditing theory. "The principle of dual responsibility" assumes that financial statements are the responsibility of the company's management and that the auditor's responsibility is to express an opinion on the fair presentation of financial statements based on his or her audit. Actually, it means the "division of responsibility." The expression "the principle of dual responsibility" seems to have taken root in auditing theory texts in Japan from the 1960s. However, it is not apparent why "dual" responsibility is refered to, instead of "division" of responsibility between management and the auditor. In addition, this expression is widely used in textbooks on auditing in Japan but it is not discussed as a principle in American texts. What's the difference between them? As complications under current accounts, there are various issues concerning accounting estimates and uncertainty of measurement. Management is required to use good judgment in the selection and application of accounting principles. Shareholders and investors require the auditor to provide much more information in the auditor's report. Whenever an auditor includes specific information on uncertainties in his report, it may be inconsistent with "the principle of dual responsibility." What is the difference between Japan and the United States in relation to "the principle of dual responsibility"? Is the provision of specific information on uncertainties in an auditor's report against "the principle of dual responsibility"? That is the theme of this paper.

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