In divorce situations, an experienced financial expert can help ensure assets are fairly appraised and a split is equitable. This article discusses several ways experts can increase the odds of achieving a fair outcome when determining asset value, including improving information access to increase the scope of discovery, uncovering hidden assets, and clarifying tax and case law. The article stresses the importance of obtaining a business valuation from an experienced expert rather than depending on rules of thumb.
The terms “fair value” and “fair market value” are sometimes used interchangeably. To a business valuation professional, however, they have very different meanings. This article explains the IRS definition of fair market value and how it’s used as a starting point for determining fair value in shareholder disputes and divorce cases. A sidebar shows how the meaning of fair value differs in a financial reporting context.
When high net worth individuals file for divorce, both sides have a financial incentive to hide assets owned by their spousal “partnership.” So, it’s important to inventory the marital estate as soon as possible. This article discusses some ways spouses may attempt to conceal their wealth and techniques that financial experts use to investigate.
The level of value used in a business valuation may affect an expert’s analyses and techniques. This article explains how experts determine the appropriate level of value and why it’s critical to make this determination before work begins.
Owners of privately held businesses may draw large salaries because of tax advantages or take little or no salary to enhance the company’s reported earnings. In these cases, the valuation expert needs to “normalize” owners’ compensation and adjust it to a reasonable level. This article identifies factors that valuators consider in determining reasonable owners’ compensation.
A buy-sell agreement can help avoid disputes over ownership rights, control and the value of a company when an owner leaves the business. Whether the agreement is triggered voluntarily or involuntarily, owners need to protect their financial interests with an agreement that’s legally enforceable and comprehensive. This article points out that it’s important to define buyout terms, avoid ambiguous or outdated valuation formulas and specify the financial data to be used in a buy-sell agreement.
Allegations of hidden assets, or even fraud, can muddy the waters and heighten tension in divorce cases, making a fair resolution difficult. Especially when a private business interest is involved, valuation and forensic accounting expertise is key in helping spouses equitably divide their assets. This article discusses some strategies moneyed spouses sometimes use to attempt to hide business assets, delay revenue recognition or overstate expenses.
When courts or shareholders question valuation results or the conclusions of opposing experts are widely divergent, a rebuttal report can bring much-needed objectivity. This article discusses various uses of rebuttal reports and situations in which they can be useful. It also explains how to determine the best rebuttal report format for a particular situation.
Struggling businesses face different financial challenges than healthy ones do. This article discusses how business valuation experts factor these differences into their estimations when valuing troubled companies.
Most business valuation professional standards recognize two types of engagements: calculations and valuations. This article explains the critical distinction between these types of assignments — and the reason a full valuation report is necessary in most litigation contexts.