Independence and quality are essential to Deloitte’s objectivity, integrity, impartiality, responsibility to the investing public, and ability to attract and retain clients. Standards for independence are shaped by legislation, regulations, professional requirements and public expectations. Maintaining independence in fact and appearance is a professional obligation to which all Deloitte professionals must adhere.
Protecting the public interest
The Deloitte Global Board of Directors has adopted robust independence policies and procedures (including around global systems and tools) to help Deloitte and its people safeguard their objectivity.
All Deloitte people are required to follow the independence policies and procedures, which address professional and regulatory requirements related to the provision of services, business relationships, employment relationships and financial relationships.
These independence policies and procedures are designed to help Deloitte professionals understand and meet independence standards and regulatory requirements to achieve excellence in service delivery. These policies and procedures are based, for the most part, on the International Code of Ethics for Professional Accountants (including International Independence Standards) issued by the International Ethics Standards Board for Accountants (IESBA) and on the independence standards of the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB). When applicable national or regional requirements are more restrictive than the requirements in Deloitte Global’s policies, Deloitte firms and their professionals and practitioners must meet those jurisdictions’ requirements as well.
Deloitte frequently serves the same clients in multiple jurisdictions. Each Deloitte firm, considering whether to accept a new client or a new engagement at an existing client, must consider the independence requirements in all applicable jurisdictions. For existing audit clients, a Deloitte firm must evaluate the independence implications of other Deloitte firms' relationships with that client, including the provision of non-audit services.
Each Deloitte firm has a director of independence who is responsible for overseeing independence matters, including the design, implementation, operation and monitoring of independence quality controls. On an annual basis, all Deloitte firms report to Deloitte Global that they have conducted procedures for determining that their firm and professionals are in compliance with Deloitte Global’s independence policies. Deloitte Global performs ongoing monitoring activities of Deloitte firms, enabling continuous enhancements to global policies, quality controls, tools and practice-support activities.
Elevating the focus
Deloitte faces dynamic regulatory environments in which national rulemaking often has broad-reaching global implications. Deloitte Global Independence leaders continually engage with external professional bodies and regulators to advance the development of independence requirements around the world. Internally, Deloitte Global provides Deloitte professionals worldwide with information and guidance on independence issues, as well as enabling technologies to raise awareness and help them comply with rapidly changing and increasingly complex requirements. Deloitte leadership reinforces the importance of compliance with independence and related quality control standards, thereby setting the appropriate tone at the top and instilling its importance into the professional values and culture of Deloitte.