Understanding the changes to audit thresholds in the UK: What you need to know


Recently, the United Kingdom has seen significant changes to audit thresholds, sparking discussions and debates within the business community. These changes aim to strike a balance between reducing regulatory burdens on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) while ensuring adequate oversight and protection for investors and stakeholders. In this blog post, we’ll delve into the specifics of these alterations, their implications, and what they mean for businesses across the UK.

What are audit thresholds?

Audit thresholds determine whether a company is required to undergo a statutory audit of its financial statements. Companies exceeding certain size criteria are obligated to conduct audits, ensuring transparency, accountability, and compliance with financial regulations.

Changes in the UK

Recent adjustments to audit thresholds in the UK have been implemented to align with the government’s objectives of stimulating economic growth and bolstering support for SMEs. Effective for financial years commencing on or after 1 October 2024, these modifications have resulted in higher thresholds, consequently reducing the number of companies obligated to undergo statutory audits.

For micro-entities, the turnover threshold will rise from £632,000 to £1 million. For small entities, it will increase from £10.2 million to £15 million. The medium threshold will increase from£25 million to £54 million. Any figure exceeding this would categorise the entity as a large company. The balance sheet total thresholds will elevate to £500,000, £7.5 million, £27 million, and anything above £27 million, respectively.

Implications and benefits

Relief for SMEs: Small and medium-sized enterprises form the backbone of the UK economy. By raising the audit thresholds, many SMEs will be exempt from the costly and time-consuming process of statutory audits. This relieves them of financial burdens and administrative complexities, allowing them to allocate resources more efficiently towards growth and innovation.

Enhanced competitiveness: Reduced regulatory burdens can enhance the competitiveness of UK businesses, especially SMEs, enabling them to compete more effectively in both domestic and international markets. This could spur entrepreneurship, innovation, and job creation, driving economic growth and prosperity.

Focus on risk-based approaches: While some companies may no longer be required to undergo statutory audits, they are still subject to regulatory oversight. This shift encourages businesses to adopt a risk-based approach to financial management, internal controls, and reporting, ensuring transparency and accountability even in the absence of a formal audit.

Investor confidence: Despite the increase in audit thresholds, investor confidence remains a priority. Larger companies and those operating in regulated sectors will continue to undergo audits, providing assurance to investors, creditors, and other stakeholders. Moreover, the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) and other regulatory bodies will maintain vigilance to safeguard the integrity of financial reporting and corporate governance.

The changes to audit thresholds in the UK reflect a concerted effort to balance regulatory requirements with the needs of businesses, particularly SMEs. By raising the thresholds, the government aims to alleviate the regulatory burden on smaller companies while maintaining transparency and accountability in the corporate sector. While these changes bring relief to many businesses, it’s crucial for companies to remain vigilant in their financial management practices and uphold high standards of governance and reporting. Through effective risk management and adherence to best practices, businesses can navigate these changes successfully and contribute to a thriving and resilient economy.

If you would like to discuss how your company can benefit from the change in audit thresholds, contact JW Hinks on 0121 456 0190.

Get in touch

JW Hinks LLP
19 Highfield Road, Edgbaston,
Birmingham B15 3BH

Phone: +44 (0) 121 456 0190
Fax: +44 (0) 121 456 0191
Email: info@jwhinks.co.uk