Skip to Content Accessibility Information

Peer Review - Public Accountancy

Peer ReviewThe Maryland Public Accountancy Act requires CPA firms and individual CPAs who perform audit or compilation services for clients to undergo a peer review every three years. Licensees and permit holders are required to certify every renewal time that they have undergone a peer review. The license and permit renewal application has a section to report peer review compliance.

What is a peer review?
A peer review is an external review of a CPA firm's or individual CPA’s quality control system in accounting and auditing practices. The purpose of peer review is to be educational for CPAs and CPA firms to further enhance the quality of their performance of accounting and auditing work. There are two types of peer reviews.

What is the difference between a “system” and an “engagement” review?
See the AICPA chart comparing the two types of peer reviews.

Who must undergo a peer review?
CPAs and CPA firms that perform audits or engagements under the Statement on Standards for Attestation Engagements (SSAEs).

Who does not have to undergo a peer review?
CPAs and CPA firms that do not perform audits, such as tax preparation, accounting, consulting, or bookkeeping services do not have to undergo a peer review. CPAs who work for a CPA firm that performs audit and compilation services do not have to obtain a separate peer review, but can claim the benefit of the peer review of their firm.

Who do I contact to get a peer review?
The Board has approved the Maryland Association of Certified Public Accountants (MACPA) Peer Review Program as the approved program for Maryland licensees and permit holders. The Board has also recognized the peer review programs of other state programs approved by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.

How often do I have to get a peer review?
Peer reviews are performed every three years. Peer reviews are usually valid for two license or permit periods. This is determined by comparing the date of the peer review acceptance letter and the license or permit renewal dates.