Test-Driving the Codification

FASBís Accounting Standards Codification was designed to simplify the classification of accounting standards into one Web-accessible database under a common referencing system. Does it work?

December 2008
by Caroline Ford and C. William Thomas/Journal of Accountancy

In January, FASB released the FASB Accounting Standards Codification (ASC or codification). The codification simplifies the classification of accounting standards by restructuring all authoritative U.S. GAAP for nongovernmental entities into one online database under a common referencing system. The codification is a first step in organizing U.S. accounting standards for convergence with IFRS.

When it becomes authoritative, which is expected to happen in July rather than in April as originally scheduled, the codification will become the single source of authoritative U.S. accounting standards for nongovernmental entities, superseding all then-existing non-SEC accounting and reporting standards. This article continues with a more detailed discussion of the structure of the codification and Web-based research system, which offers several options for accessing, viewing and using its contents.

We encourage readers to test-drive the system while they read the article to better understand the system and experience its benefits firsthand. FASB is not charging for using the system now but has not said whether that will change after the codification becomes authoritative. Register to use the codification at http://asc.fasb.org and consider commenting before FASB closes the verification period in July.

This article has been excerpted from the Journal of Accountancy. Read the full article here.