Hurricanes prompt regulation relief

Hurricane Irma
Hurricanes Irma, Harvey and Maria prompted the SEC to provide regulatory relief to affected businesses.

The Securities Exchange Commission last week issued an order easing regulations on businesses affected by three hurricanes.

Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria disrupted the normal flow of business, to say the least. So on Thursday, the SEC exempted some businesses affected by the storms from some requirements for a period following the storm.

According to a press release, the SEC’s actions apply to publicly traded companies, investment companies, accountants, transfer agents, municipal advisors and others.

Among the regulations eased by the SEC:

  • Auditor independence requirements. Rules normally prohibit auditors from providing bookkeeping or other accounting services for clients they audit. The regulation relief allows accountants to help reconstruct clients’ records lost or destroyed by the storms.
  • The Commission also adopted temporary rules extending reporting deadlines for companies seeking to raise money through crowdfunding.

The SEC isn’t the only government agency easing rules because of the hurricanes. The IRS also loosened rules to allow owners of low-income rental property to provide shelter to people displaced by the storms.

However the storms have affected your business, Sterling Accounting can help with everything from bookkeeping to payroll.

Hurricane Harvey slammed into Texas in August, bringing with it widespread flooding to towns and cities including Houston. During a four-day period, the storm dumped as much as 40 inches of rain in some areas. Eighty-three people in the U.S. lost their lives. Experts estimated economic losses from $70 billion to $200 billion.

Hurricane Irma clocked in as the most intense storm to hit the U.S. since Katrina. Irma caused widespread destruction in the Caribbean before blowing through Florida. Cities in South Florida are still working to get rid of storm debris.

Hurricanes Maria and Irma hit Puerto Rico especially hard. Relief efforts there are in the early stages.

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