Litigation

Quantifying Economic Damages: A Federal Case Study

Louis J. Cercone, CPA, CFE, CFF, ABV, ASA, CVA

Does a business need to be completely destroyed to recoup economic damages incurred in a business tort claim? A recent federal court ruling awarded a plaintiff damages based on the value of the business prior to the defendants' alleged wrongdoing — even though the business continued to operate.

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Timing Counts When Classifying Property in Divorce

Louis J. Cercone, CPA, CFE, CFF, ABV, ASA, CVA

Business interests acquired and nurtured during marriage are generally classified as marital property in most jurisdictions. But what if a couple owns a business that's sold prior to settling their divorce and the sale includes "earnout" payments that are contingent on future performance? Minnesota's Supreme Court addressed this issue in a recent high-profile case. 

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Ensuring a Peaceful Succession With a Buy-Sell Agreement

William P. Allen, CPA/ABV, CFE

A wave of consolidation in the music publishing sector. Several multimillion-dollar music portfolios are reportedly up for sale. But are they asking too much to attract serious buyers? When it comes to valuing intellectual property assets, experts don't rely on gut instinct. Here's an overview of tried-and-true methods used to value copyright portfolios and other types of intellectual property. 

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Music Industry Illustrates How to Value Intellectual Property

William P. Allen, CPA/ABV, CFE

A wave of consolidation in the music publishing sector. Several multimillion-dollar music portfolios are reportedly up for sale. But are they asking too much to attract serious buyers? When it comes to valuing intellectual property assets, experts don't rely on gut instinct. Here's an overview of tried-and-true methods used to value copyright portfolios and other types of intellectual property. 

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A Written Report Can Validate an Experts Method

Douglas P. Sosnowski, CPA/ABV, ASA, CFF

Expert witness testimony can sometimes make or break a case. But if your financial expert is unable to survive a Daubert challenge, the court may not be presented with critical evidence that could otherwise help prove (or dispute) damages or value. A recent federal district court case shows how a comprehensive written report can demonstrate that experts used proven financial theories and techniques to arrive at their conclusion.

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Reliable Experts Are Independent Experts

Every financial expert witness relies on assumptions or limiting conditions when valuing a business or quantifying economic damages. But what happens when the expert isn't given the opportunity to perform independent analyses or question key assumptions provided by the client or attorney? As one case demonstrates, failure to respect your expert's independence can led to the exclusion of his or her testimony.

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How Financial Reporting Quality Affects Expert Opinions

A financial expert's opinion is only as reliable as the numeric data that it's based on. The quality of financial information can span a wide range — from a company that generates only tax returns to a business with audited financial statements. The key is to catch and remedy financial data deficiencies as early as possible in litigation support engagements.

 

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Calculating Income in Divorce Cases

When it comes to calculating income for child or spousal support purposes in marital dissolution cases, the appropriate definitions of "income" varies based on state law. These calculations can involve significant complexity and uncertainty. So financial experts may be called in to help. This article explains some of the factors examined and what a financial expert brings to the table.

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