reliability principle in accounting

This information becomes useless and unreliable because no appropriate steps can be taken with this set of biased information. In simple words, Accounting Reliability is the set of financial information that can be verified with the same results consistently when used by the investors or creditors.

Why reliability is important in business?

Reliability is applied to the performance of individuals, products, processes, and data, among other things. Reliable performance in all of these areas is critical to successful business planning and results. In order for a business to be successful, all of its components must be reliable.

For example, in agriculture industry, calculating cost per crop is difficult and expensive and hence they choose to report the price in the current market which is easier for farmers. In the field of accounting, when reporting the financial statements of a company, accounting constraints are boundaries, limitations, or guidelines. This accounting principle states that the information which will have a material effect should form a part of the financial statements. The information that is not material and by which the users don’t get misled can be avoided.


Failure of actual results to fall within a reasonable range of budgeted amounts should cause the owners to investigate the reason for the variance. Financial statements cannot be useful if they are based on unreliable and inaccurate recordings of transactions. There is no greater example of the garbage in, garbage out principle than financial statement preparation. The problem is that financial statement users cannot usually assess the presence of garbage simply by reading the statements. The statements may look fine, but in reality be riddled with inaccuracies. Alpha industry has a customer with whom the company has credit line of $5 millions.

What is reliability in research example?

The term reliability in psychological research refers to the consistency of a research study or measuring test. For example, if a person weighs themselves during the course of a day they would expect to see a similar reading. Scales which measured weight differently each time would be of little use.

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Relevance and Reliability

For example, if there is a $0.1 difference between checkbook register and bank statement, accountant should ignore the $0.1 rather than waste time and money to find the $0.1. According to the Financial Accounting Standards Board, another extremely important accounting assumption is the time period assumption. What this assumption means is that the accounting practices and methods used by a company should be maintained and reported for specific periods of time. These periods should also be consistent each year that the business is in operation. Time periods can be monthly, quarterly, biannually, or annually but must be consistent so that records can be compared over set time periods. This accounting principle states that there should be a standardized time period for reporting the financial statements.

  • Relevance and reliability are therefore basic attributes of every accounting information that cannot be done without.
  • Let’s walk through some of the features your accounting system needs to have for continuous, reliable information.
  • In the Double Entry system, every transaction is involved in both debit and credit.
  • These attributes should therefore be present in any accounting information.
  • Relevance and reliability are accounting attributes that increase the integrity of accounting reports and statements.
  • The question of how much money should be spent on auditing and internal controls is a matter of perspective and circumstances.

We also reference original research from other reputable publishers where appropriate. You can learn more about the standards we follow in producing accurate, unbiased content in oureditorial policy.

Costs and benefits

Also known as the Objectivity Principle, this basic accounting principle requires that all companies provide accounting information that is without significant error or bias. The reliability principle is generally required for publicly traded corporations under the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. A business must use three separate types of accounting to track its income and expenses most efficiently.

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OBJECTIVITY PRINCIPLE states that accounting information will be recorded on the basis of objective evidence. Objective evidence means that different people looking at the evidence will arrive at the same values for the transaction. Simply put, this means that accounting entries will be based on fact and not on personal opinion or feelings. • Most business accountants use the reliability principle as their guide when deciding which financial information to use in their company’s accounts. • It cannot be selected, prepared or presented to favour one set of interested users over another. This was disclosed, as required by GAAP, in the footnotes to the audited financial statements. The TUK Plc is engaged in providing cable TV services at metropolitan level.

What is reliability of records?

They do not make the psychic effort to implement the needed controls, because the burden of mistrusting their own employees is too great. In fact, the shock and anguish of employers who have been betrayed by trusted employees who have acted dishonestly, is often more painful than the monetary loss . The system of accounting is most scientific and reliable because it is the Double Entry System. In the Double Entry system, every transaction is involved in both debit and credit. One is ‘deliberate dishonesty.’ The other is ‘incompetency.’ There are certain methods to combat this evil. This wrong information may lead to very wrong decisions or steps taken upon with the help of this information.

reliability principle in accounting

Due to producing low quality chemicals and causing severe damage to one of its client, a lawsuit has been filled. Board of directors and lawyers of YTC are sure that if the case comes against them, it would lead to the liquidation of the company on the order of the court. YTC has to reliability principle in accounting disclose this information in its financial statements to ensure that its reports are relevant and reliable. This information helps the stakeholders in making decisions and make future strategies. Non disclosure could lead to decisions which may prove detrimental to their interest.

Accounting standards are implemented to improve the quality of financial information reported by companies. If the collected data shows the same results after being tested using various methods and sample groups, the information is reliable.

Revenue is earned and recognized upon product delivery or service completion, without regard to the timing of cash flow. Suppose a store orders five hundred compact discs from a wholesaler in March, receives them in April, and pays for them in May. The wholesaler recognizes the sales revenue in April when delivery occurs, not in March when the deal is struck or in May when the cash is received. Similarly, if an attorney receives a $100 retainer from a client, the attorney doesn’t recognize the money as revenue until he or she actually performs $100 in services for the client.

Accounting constraints

The tradeoff between reliability and relevance of accounting information is more evident in certain sectors. The oil and gas sector for example constantly experiences the tradeoff between reliability and relevance. Oil and gas firms give recognition to the current value of reserves in the calculation of net income. When it comes to the sharing of accounting information, no selective preference is made to favor one party at the expense of another. Take for instance a situation where a company is on the verge of going bankrupt. Accounting information is said to be faithfully represented if it is neutral, free from error, as well as complete. The data presented in the financial reports or statements should be a true picture of what is in existence.

  • International Accounting Standards are an older set of standards that were replaced by International Financial Reporting Standards in 2001.
  • These key players rely on the accounting information made available by the business to determine the financial position of the business or organization.
  • In simple words, Accounting Reliability is the set of financial information that can be verified with the same results consistently when used by the investors or creditors.
  • Furthermore, accounting records must be recorded using a stable currency.
  • One is ‘deliberate dishonesty.’ The other is ‘incompetency.’ There are certain methods to combat this evil.
  • As a result, investors may decide to expand their investments in the company.

Privately held companies and nonprofit organizations may also be required by lenders or investors to file GAAP-compliant financial statements. For example, annual audited GAAP financial statements are a common loan covenant required by most banking institutions. Therefore, most companies and organizations in the United States comply with GAAP, even though it is not a legal requirement. Although privately-held companies are not required to abide by GAAP, publicly traded companies must file GAAP-compliant financial statements in order to be listed on a stock exchange. Chief officers of publicly traded companies and their independent auditors must certify that the financial statements and related notes were prepared in accordance with GAAP. A company’s accounting results are verifiable when they’re reproducible, so that, given the same data and assumptions, an independent accountant would come up with the same result the company did.