Comparison of the negative and positive methods, Auditing

Comparison of the Negative and Positive Methods

Negative Method

According to this method of circularisation, the customer is asked to communicate only when he does not agree along with the balance. Effectively the customer is told that whether no reply is obtained from them then the auditor will include that the debtor is in agreement along with all the terms in the circular. The main drawback of this method is that whether the debtor does not obtain the circular, so he will not respond, and this could be misconstrued to mean such the debtor obtained the circular whenever in fact it was never considered and received. From this standpoint, this way is unreliable and should just be used when there is strong internal control.

Positive Method

According to the positive technique, the customer is asked to reply when he agrees the balance or not or is asked to provide the balance himself. This technique is used when there is weak internal control, suspicion of irregularities or items in dispute and several book-keeping errors.

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