Litigation Support

In today’s increasingly complex business environment, it is crucial for litigation support professionals to be able to perform sophisticated financial analyses. Having a strong case can help you avoid a lengthy judicial contest and reduce the expense of valuable time and litigation costs you may incur.

Accurate and dependable analysis of your damages, property valuation, financial and tax positions can be key to winning your case or knowing when to settle and for what price. We stay current on the latest developments in state and federal cases in order to employ the most relevant methods available.

In addition to providing litigation support services, our experienced Business Valuation professionals can help you determine what your business is worth and how you can enhance its value.

Effective Use of Financial Experts

Learn when and how to utilize our expertise to help support your case.

Litigation Support Services

Our litigation support professionals have the specialized training and skills to provide valuable knowledge and case assessment tools to you and your legal advisor. Learn more about our qualifications

We have provided litigation support services to a wide variety of clients – ranging from small, privately held businesses to publicly traded, multi-entity organizations with operations throughout the United States – for many purposes, including:

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Value Measurement for Accounting – Financial Reporting Requirements

Proper application of generally accepted accounting principles often calls for significant changes to the way that accounts must be prepared and presented, requiring a wider range of assets to be valued on an annual basis. Our business valuation professionals understand the specific accounting implications, as well as the wider commercial context in which those accounting valuations will apply, and can provide the independent valuation opinions required to meet your financial reporting requirements.

Our professionals stay current on the latest pronouncements and guidance produced by the relevant regulatory authorities such as the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB), International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), such as:

  • Allocations of acquisition purchase price under ASC 805 – Business combinations require specific financial reporting procedures to recognize and allocate all identifiable assets acquired, liabilities assumed and non-controlling interests in an acquisition. 
  • Under IFRS, the accounting treatment for acquisitions requires that all assets (tangible and intangible) from a merger or acquisition must be included in the balance sheet of the acquirer at their current market value and be depreciated over their useful economic life.
  • Intangible asset and goodwill impairment testing under ASC 350 – Goodwill is tested for impairment annually, and is marked down according to the conclusions of that process.
  • Valuing stock and equity-based compensation under ASC 718 – in order to create a more “level playing field” for equity compensation design, the standard generally requires that all equity awards granted to employees and nonemployees be accounted for at “fair value.”
  • A range of financial assets need to be valued under IAS, including financial instruments and insurance contracts. IFRS requires share options to be valued on an annual basis as they are charged against the profit and loss account.

 

Because the Sarbanes-Oxley Act prevents firms from preparing valuations for companies for which they provide attest services, we work cooperatively with other regional and national accounting firms, to prepare independent business valuations for a wide array of financial reporting applications.

Bankruptcy Consulting & Valuation

Correctly applied, valuation is critical to the overall assessment of solvency in many workout situations as well as for compliance with bankruptcy and cancellation of indebtedness rules set forth in income tax statutes. Business valuations are important for creditors and debtors in a bankruptcy proceeding. 

Bankruptcy or restructuring actions can often be uncharted territory for management. We understand the need for responsiveness in bankruptcy and turnaround scenarios and can produce a quality work product in a timely fashion. We work with our clients’ legal and other advisors to help bring clarity and focus to the process. These services can significantly improve the chances of making a bankruptcy an efficient and positive business strategy. 

Our advisory services in this area include, but are not limited to:

  • Business valuation for debt restructuring purposes
  • Business valuation in bankruptcy
  • Design and implementation of spin-off strategies
  • Fairness assessment of offers to buy or sell the company or its assets
  • Financial feasibility analysis
  • Fraudulent conveyance analysis
  • Identification, quantification and analyses for fraudulent conveyances
  • Liquidation analysis
  • Litigation support within bankruptcy proceedings 
  • Organization structure issues
  • Preferential payment analysis
  • Protection analysis
  • Reorganization plan analysis
  • Restructuring strategy development
  • Review of opposing expert’s reports and analyses for proper application of technical guidance and conceptual propriety
  • Solvency analysis
  • Valuations for minority investors in entities that are in the process of restructuring or are in liquidation

Economic Damages & Lost Profit Calculations

The calculation of economic damages to assist with recovery of unrealized revenue can be required for many different types of cases including breach of contract, torts, and intellectual property infringement. Lost profits are not an independent cause for litigation, rather, they are the measure of a monetary remedy for a business that has suffered a financial detriment due to the wrongful act of another.

Each lost profits situation is different and unique. The specific facts and circumstances govern the approach and methods deployed. The goal of an economic damages calculation is to restore the individual or the company to the position it would have been in if the damaging conduct or act had not occurred. It is critical to provide well-developed, documented evidence of the damages incurred.

Our valuation professionals can serve as consultants and/or testifying financial experts to assist in the determination and support needed to enable the recovery of lost profits. Download our continuing education materials for more information about Damages and Lost Profits.

Estate, Gift and Inheritance Tax Strategies

A focus on planning for estate, gift and inheritance taxes can potentially save significant dollars for many privately held business owners and other high-net-worth taxpayers. Wealth preservation strategies are often built around a foundation of asset valuation. Download our continuing education materials for more information about Valuations for Estate Planning.

At GYF, we work collaboratively with the region’s best estate planning professionals. Our work often involves valuation of privately held business interests with an emphasis on valuation adjustments reflecting premiums and discounts for control and marketability issues.

Our professionals have extensive experience in preparing valuations for family limited partnerships (FLPs), S corporation recapitalizations and ownership sales to irrevocable trusts in exchange for long-term annuity payment streams. Such sophisticated devices can be used advantageously by many individuals. The keystone for each strategy is very often a defendable valuation.

We have prepared many valuations for estate, gift and inheritance tax purposes and have successfully defended our reports under tax authority audit. Our valuators have also navigated through the Internal Revenue Service Appeals division, with little or no adjustment to values contained within our reports.

All reports are prepared to meet the Treasury Department’s “adequate disclosure” regulations and “qualified appraiser” rules. Similar reports have been prepared by our professionals on numerous occasions to assist legal counsel with the appropriate compliance requirements for decedents’ estates.

Expert Witness Testimony

Forensic accounting has become a vital facet of litigation. Increasingly, attorneys must document the numbers they rely upon to substantiate their damage claims. The growing partnership between CPAs and the legal community is evidenced by the diversity of situations requiring the calculations and expert testimony of forensic accountants. Download our continuing education materials for more information about Utilizing Financial Experts.

All expert witness testimony related to business valuation and civil controversy is provided by the partners who lead the Business Valuation Services Group. Bob Grossman and Melissa Bizyak have been qualified as experts in several states and carry all major professional accreditations in valuation. They have earned impeccable credentials and have achieved national prominence in the discipline of business valuation. Click here to view their professional qualifications.

Bob and Melissa have performed hundreds of business valuations and authored numerous technical articles and training materials. Their explanations of the valuation and reporting positions as well as their responses to questions on the witness stand afford clients and legal counsel an opportunity to defend positions brought to trial.

They can provide expert witness testimony and depositions in family law matters concerning spousal support, child support and property division as well as business law matters concerning shareholder disputes, partnership disputes, business valuations, economic damages, lost profits, insurance claims, breach of duty, alter ego and fraud.

Marital Dissolution & Equitable Distribution

GYF provides specialized valuation and litigation support services in dissolution and equitable distribution matters for marital estates of all sizes and complexity. Our professionals have experience in valuing businesses, identifying and tracing assets, apportionment and reimbursement calculations, fair property distribution allocations, expense and/or lifestyle quantification, as well as cash flow, income and stock option analyses.

We assist counsel and their clients through all phases of the financial aspect of the dissolution process, including discovery and disclosure, document and data accumulation, financial analysis, mediation presentations, settlement assistance, and when necessary, reporting via written or oral expert testimony. Our professionals also provide expert testimony in Family Courts throughout Pennsylvania, and in proceedings before private mediators and judges. 

Our professionals hold specialized professional credentials relevant to analyses in marital dissolution engagements. Our team also includes professionals with special expertise in handling and analyzing large amounts of electronic data, a skill which is often advantageous in our marital dissolution practice.

Matters of Civil Controversy

In matters of civil controversy intended to provide monetary relief to harmed parties, the calculation of economic damages is critical to a fair and accurate resolution. Propriety and defensibility of these calculations are paramount, whether the matter is ultimately settled or goes to trial. 

Our Business Valuation Services Group has provided extensive assistance to clients in each of the following areas:

  • Business-owner splits — difficulties over interpretations of buy/sell agreements, the non-existence of such an agreement and owner departures under adversarial circumstances
  • Minority shareholder lawsuits — oppressed or minority shareholder actions (for and against) alleging harm imposed by controlling owner actions
  • Lost profits calculations — lost profit calculations for contract breach, non-competition agreement breach, patent and know-how infringement and unauthorized transfer of employees’ know-how with employment change
  • Economic damages calculations — determination of past and future income losses, fringe benefit values, life and work-life income expectancy and personal consumption calculations

Our services in these matters often include assisting legal counsel with discovery and development of direct and cross examination techniques and questions as well as strategy formation to illustrate key case components at trial.

Shareholder Disputes

The issue of shareholder oppression arises in the context of privately held businesses in which equity ownership is divided between majority and minority shareholders, and the controlling shareholder(s) misuses that control to the detriment of the non-controlling shareholder(s). In those cases where management allegedly undertakes actions that the minority shareholder believes are unfair and harmful to his or her particular equity ownership position, litigation may be required for resolution. Download our continuing education materials for more information about Equity Owner Oppression.

The remedies in an oppression proceeding are most often reduced to an economic platform comprised of a monetary resolution. This process requires the determination of economic damages resulting from actions taken by the majority equity owners that ultimately serve to misuse corporate assets and/or unjustly enrich majority equity owners.

Valuations in this context are generally intended to assist legal counsel in assessing the estimated economic impact of the alleged action. To make this determination, depending on the controlling state law statutes, the general goal is to ensure that the minority equity owner is returned to the same financial position he or she was in prior to the alleged oppressive action(s) by the majority equity owners.