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Sarbanes Oxley Act Sox And Not The Ones On Your Feet!

by: Earl Powers

Sarbanes Oxley Act falls under 'Corporate and Auditing Accountability, Responsibility, and Transparency Act' or 'CAARTA' act which was passed by the US Senate Banking Committee with the support of President Bush. This act was passed to strengthen corporate governance and improve investor confidence. Sarbanes Oxley Act ensured the accuracy and reliability of disclosures from the corporate world. This came into force to avoid any financial scandals from corporate giants.

Sarbannes Oxley Act is more often known as SOX or Sarbox but is actually officially termed as Public Company Accounting Reform and Investor Protection Act of 2002. It is the single most important piece of legislation that affects the corporate governance, financial disclosures and the practice of public accounting. Sarbanes Oxley Act prevents the large corporate giants to commit and financial frauds. This act also punished such corporate that showcase irregularities in their financial accountings. After the Sarbanes Oxley Act came into affect is strengthened investor confidence as this law bring the defaulters to justice and protects the interest of workers and shareholders.

According the Sarbanes Oxley Act the large companies need to meet the financial reporting and certification mandates for any year end financial statements. This act is organized into 11 titles but in actual case only subset of these titles relate to the compliance to the complete law.

Sarbanes Oxley Act established new standards for corporate boards and audit committees. This law implements criminal penalties on large corporate companies for defaulting and sets new accountability standards. Sarbanes Oxley Act gives more freedom the external auditors to set new standards of governance. This act also issues accounting standards and oversees public accounting firms.

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With the increase of regulatory norms, more and more companies are coming under the scrutiny of Federal government. Those companies that specially obtain lists and store personal information come under special scrutiny of Sarbanes Oxley Act. Lately, there had been review stating that Sarbanes Oxley Act has been too stringent on the companies. The most talked about section of the Sarbanes Oxley Act is the Section 404 which seeks to enhance reliability of internals controls over financial reporting. These tightened internal control implemented as a result of Sarbanes Oxley Act has lead strains on companies as well as the accounting firms.

A proper regulatory framework with more stringent rules and a company with proper internal regulatory body delivers the most accurate and transparent financial reporting. This law is administered by Securities and Exchange Commission. This body sets rules and deadlines for the compliance and published rules on the requirements.

The three rules of Sarbannes Oxley Act regulate the management of electronic records. The first rule refers to the falsification, destruction and alteration of records. The second rule states the retention of records by any company so as to how long the records should be stored. The third rule refers to the type of business records that need to be stored.

A total comprehensive study of the Sarbanes Oxley Act and its implementation by the corporate bodies deliver the most transparent and factual financial records for the company.


About The Author

Earl Powers, US Lawyer and Sarbanes Oxley Compliance expert at Aquest Group LLC ( http://www.404-sarbanes-oxley.info ) publishes other articles related to Sarbanes Oxley Compliance at http://www.sarbanes-oaxley.info and http://www.sarbanes-oxley-training.info.

 
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