The IASB has made clarifying amendments to IFRS 15 Revenue from Contracts with Customersand introduced additional transition relief for entities applying the standard for the first time.
The amendments clarify the application of IFRS 15 in three specific areas to reduce the amount of diversity in practice that might otherwise result from differing views on how to implement the requirements of the new standard.They will help companies:
- identify performance obligations (by clarifying how to apply the concept of 'distinct');
- determine whether a company is a principal or an agent in a transaction (by clarifying how to apply the control principle); and
- determine whether a licence transfers to a customer at a point in time or over time (by clarifying when a company's activities significantly affect the intellectual property to which the customer has rights).
The amendments also create two additional practical expedients available for use when implementing IFRS 15:
- for contracts that have been modified before the beginning of the earliest period presented, the amendments allow companies to use hindsight when identifying the performance obligations, determining the transaction price, and allocating the transaction price to the satisfied and unsatisfied performance obligations; and
- companies applying the full retrospective method are permitted to ignore contracts already complete at the beginning of the earliest period presented.
The Amendments are effective for annual periods beginning on or after 1 January 2018 (the effective date of the new standard). Earlier application is permitted.