Acc260 Solving Ethical Dilemmas in the Accounting Profession

1085 words 5 pages
Final Project: Solving Ethical Dilemmas in the Accounting Profession
Laurie Searing
July 25, 2010
Hope Piggee

Solving Ethical Dilemmas in the Accounting Profession
This dilemma in this ethical case is whether or not Daniel Potter (Dan), staff accountant for Baker Greenleaf accounting firm, should report unethical changes his immediate supervisor, Oliver Freeman, made to an audit report. The problem is that a large piece of real estate was valued on the balance sheet at $2 million. Dan had estimated the property at $100,000. Dan based his value estimate on the condition, location, and how long the property had been vacant. He approached the managers of the subsidiary with a proposal to write down the value of the property by
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According to Brooks, (2007), “Kant would argue that lying would not be a good rule because others following the same rule would lie to you - an eventuality you would not want” (chap. 5, p. 331). Additionally, deontological reasoning teaches that we are to use principles, moral standards, and rules as well as respecting the duties and obligations when making ethical decisions. Brooks (2007) states, “virtue ethicists are concerned with the motivating aspect of moral character demonstrated by decision makers” (chap. 5, pg. 332). Both of these approaches lead decision makers to “enlightened self interest” instead of self-serving fulfillment. These are traits that Dan feels very strongly about, apparently Oliver does not.
Dan could easily let the matter go and work on rebuilding his reputation with the company after the negative review from Oliver and the matter would be over. What if someone were to buy that piece of property and discover it was only worth $100,000 when the audit report clearly states that the property was worth $2 million? Dan could be blamed for the misstatement and could be held liable by the buyer and the professional communities to which he belongs. If he does say something about the conduct of Oliver he could lose his job as well as his reputation in his professional career.
The impact of his decision