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Thursday, May 16, 2024 Live Webcast

Audits of Employee Benefit Plans Conference (E2405210)

8:00 AM - 4:00 PM EDT


8 CPE Credits in AA


As you aim for quality, excellence and efficiency in your employee benefit plan audit practice, spend a day with us to explore standards, issues and strategies that are on the horizon for 2024 and beyond.


CPAs involved in the auditing of employee benefit and pension plans


According to a U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) report released last December, 70% of audits of employee benefit plan financial statements fully complied with auditing standards or had minor deficiencies. Ensure your practice is in the 70%. This conference will focus on the current audit landscape, procedures to strengthen quality and practices to mitigate deficiencies.

8-8:50 a.m.

SECURE Act 2.0 Rules Reshaping Qualified Retirement Plans: Considerations for 2024 and Beyond

Tyler Reedman, CFP - HFM Investment Advisors, LLC

Explore the dynamic landscape of qualified retirement plans in the post-SECURE Act 2.0 era. We’ll review the latest rules and regulations reshaping qualified retirement plans, offering valuable insights for CPAs navigating the complexities of 2024 and beyond.


9-10:15 a.m.

U.S. Department of Labor Update

Michael Auerbach, CPA – U.S. Department of Labor

Hear from the Employee Benefits Security Administration's Office of the Chief Accountant about new developments and essential measures for ERISA compliance


10:25-11:15 a.m.

Internal Controls and SOC Reports

Heather Karpawich, CPA – Grant Thornton LLP

Mia Tempesta, CPA – Grant Thornton

Learn how internal controls, including those at service providers, affect the audit procedures, timing and scope. We’ll discuss how SOC 1s impact audit procedures, audit considerations and documenting the considerations.


11:25 a.m.-12:15 p.m.

SAS 143 and SAS 145 Update

Michael Kaplan, CPA - Smolin, Lupin & Co., LLC

This session will cover the following topics:
  • Statement on Auditing Standards No. 143, Auditing Accounting Estimates and Related Disclosures
  • Statement on Auditing Standards No. 145, Understanding the Entity and Its Environment and Assessing the Risks of Material Misstatement


12:45-1:35 p.m.

Definition of Compensation

Anastasia Romeo, CPA - WithumSmith+Brown, PC

Coral Lykkebak - CPA - WithumSmith+Brown, PC

Hear an overview of eligible compensation for retirement plans and learn how to identify different types of eligible compensation. Then, review best practices to test eligible compensation and receive practice points on common errors.


1:45-2:35 p.m.

AICPA Employee Benefit Plan Audit Quality Center Update

Sue Hicks, CPA - AICPA
Joe Zamboni, CPA - AICPA

Discuss the AICPA’s response to the 2023 DOL audit quality study report and EBPAQC tools and resources that address many of the audit quality issues identified in the study. Discover AICPA and EBPAQC resources to help you perform efficient and effective EBP audits.


2:45-4 p.m.

Common Reporting and Auditing Issues

Donna Nevolo, CPA – WithumSmith+Brown, PC

Sean Linde, CPA – WithumSmith+Brown, PC

This session will cover the most common deficiencies encountered while performing audits of employee benefit plans.




Michael Auerbach

Michael E. Auerbach, CPA

Chief Accountant, Division of Accounting Services

US Department of Labor

As the Chief Accountant, Employee Benefits Security Administration, Mr. Auerbach is responsible for managing the resources of the Office of the Chief Accountant and implementing various comprehensive, nationwide enforcement programs relating to certain provisions of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). He also provides ERISA related accounting and auditing technical expertise within the Employee Benefits Security Administration and is the liaison with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and other professional organizations. Mr. Auerbach provides executive oversight and leadership for EBSA’s fiduciary oversight program for the federal government’s Thrift Savings Plan (TSP). The TSP is the largest defined contribution plan in the world, with assets of in excess of $500 billion and 5.0 million participants.

Mr. Auerbach is a certified public accountant and earned his B.S. in accounting, from the University of Maryland.

Susan Hicks

Susan W. Hicks, CPA

Senior Manager


Susan W. Hicks, CPA is a Senior Manager with the AICPA Employee Benefit Plan Audit Quality Center. She is responsible for all Center activities, including member recruitment and retention, member communications, technical support to the Center’s Executive Committee, and serving as liaison to the DOL. She also staffs the AICPA Employee Benefit Plans Expert Panel. Prior to joining the AICPA, Ms. Hicks was a manager at Touche Ross & Co. She obtained her B.S. in Accounting at the University of Northern Colorado.

Michael Kaplan

Michael S. Kaplan, CPA

Member of the Firm

Smolin, Lupin & Co., LLC.

Michael is a member of the firm at Smolin, Lupin & Co and is responsible for quality control of the firm's Audit and Accounting practice. As a licensed CPA in New Jersey and New York, he assists clients with their annual audit requirements in a wide variety of industries including manufacturing, distribution, healthcare, life sciences, construction, real estate, broadcasting, retail, restaurants, apparel, publishing, software, technology and professional services. He has practiced public accounting for more than 25 years and also served private clients, assisting with audits of employee benefit plans, including 401ks, 403bs, 11Ks, and health and welfare benefit plans. He has been a speaker on employee benefit plans and had presented on national webcasts, at seminars and at continuing professional education (CPE) courses. In addition, he has written articles on various employee benefit plan topics. Michael is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the NJCPA.

Heather Karpawich

Heather Karpawich, CPA

Managing Director

Grant Thornton LLP

Heather is a Managing Director in the Philadelphia office of Grant Thornton LLP with over 16 years of auditing and accounting experience. She is an Employee Benefit Plan practice dedicated Managing Director who has supervised and managed the performance of numerous employee benefit plan audits for both large and small companies across various industries including not-for-profit, healthcare and commercial. She is experienced in audits of both limited and full scope 401(k), 403(b), 401(a), defined benefit plans, health and welfare, 11-K filings and ESOPs. Heather has extensive experience in addressing reporting and disclosure issues related to benefit plans.

In addition, Heather annually participates both writing and delivering Grant Thornton’s employee benefit plan audit training. She annually participants in internal practice reviews and peer reviews. Her clients include private, publicly held and not-for-profit companies

Sean Linde

Sean P. Linde, CPA



Sean is a senior manager at Withum's Whippany, NJ office and has 15 years of public accounting experience. His expertise includes auditing, financial statement preparation and business consulting. Sean is a member of the Firm’s Manufacturing, Distribution & Logistics and Employee Benefits Services groups. In these roles he provides accounting and auditing services to clients within the manufacturing, distribution, cannabis and transportation industry sectors and employee benefit audit services to plans across all industries. Sean is also the Audit Team Leader of the Cannabis Services team and a frequent presenter at conferences and workshops on emerging accounting and industry topics. He resides in Bergen County, NJ.

Coral Lykkebak

Coral Lykkebak, CPA


Coral Lykkebak, CPA is a Manager at Withum’s Orlando, FL office and has over 10 years of public accounting experience. Coral is well-versed in auditing various types of employee benefit plans, such as Defined Contribution Plans, 11-K filers, Defined Benefit Plans, Employer Stock Ownership Plans (ESOPs), Multiple Employer Plans, Multi-Employer Plans, and Government Pensions. Coral actively participates in audits related to Professional Employer Organizations, Staffing Agencies and Payroll Funding Agencies.

Donna Nevolo

Donna A. Nevolo, CPA



Donna Nevolo, CPA is a partner based in the Whippany, NJ, office and has over 15 years of experience serving large, publicly held multi-national companies. As a member of the Firm’s Financial Services and Employee Benefit and Pension Plans Services Groups, Donna has extensive experience with auditing broker-dealers, hedge funds and other commercial businesses as well as retirement plan auditing. She consults clients on tax compliance and supervises the preparation of corporate and individual tax returns.

Tyler Reedman

Tyler A. Reedman, CFP

Financial Advisor

HFM Investment Advisors, LLC

As a certified financial planner, Tyler assists individuals and families with all aspects of their financial planning and investments. Clients value his input, so much so that they often connect Tyler with their children for guidance on setting up their first individual retirement accounts (IRAs) or paying back their student loans. Tyler also works with HFM’s 401(k) clients, helping them maintain successful retirement plans, presenting workplace financial wellness and 401(k) education seminars, and delivering 1:1 financial advice for employees.

Anastasia Romeo

Anastasia Romeo, CPA

Audit Senior Manager


Anastasia (Ana) Romeo, CPA is a Senior Manager based in Withum’s Whippany, NJ office and has over 10 years of auditing and accounting experience. Ana is a member of the Firm’s Healthcare and Employee Benefit Plan services groups. Ana has extensive employee benefit plan expertise in performing ERISA Section 103(a)(3)(C) and ERISA Non-Section 103(a)(3)(C) audits, including defined contribution plans, defined benefit plans and cash balance plans for private and public companies. Ana is also a senior member of Withum's Accounting and Auditing Fellowship Program, responsible for instructing and training staff and conducting numerous in-house continuing professional education (CPE) certified courses.

Mia Tempesta

Mia Tempesta


Grant Thornton LLP

Joe Zamboni

Joe Zamboni, CPA

Associate Director


Joe is a seasoned accounting and auditing professional with a passion for leveraging technology to streamline processes and improve outcomes. As Associate Director - Accounting and Auditing Tools and Methodology at the AICPA, he is at the forefront of developing and maintaining cloud-based tools for auditing employee benefit plans (OnPoint EBP) and performing preparation, compilation, and review engagements (OnPoint PCR). In addition, Joe is a key member of the AICPA's core methodology team, contributing to the development of the innovative Dynamic Audit Solution (DAS).

With a background that spans executive editorial roles in Thomson Reuters' Tax & Accounting division, external financial reporting and benefits accounting management at Sabre Inc., and public practice experience with Deloitte & Touche, Joe brings a wealth of practical experience to his work, enabling him to develop tools and methodologies that are both effective and efficient.