Demystifying Valuation, Economic Damages + Forensic Accounting

Ponzi schemes: an overview

Often, when people find out I am a forensic accountant, they will ask me about widely publicized cases involving fraudsters, such as Bernie Madoff, who is currently serving a 150 year sentence in prison for orchestrating a multi-billion dollar Ponzi scheme. During 2010, the SEC filed forty-seven enforcement actions involving Ponzi schemes. Sometimes I am …

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Discounts in Marital Dissolution Business Valuations – To Discount or Not

After 15 years of marriage, Art and Wanda were getting divorced.  Among all the assets that had to be distributed was the family business, a heating, ventilation and air conditioning repair company.  Husband was the operator of the business.  Wife took care of the kids and managed the household.  Now Husband was faced with having …

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Discount for Lack of Marketability Job Aid for IRS Valuation Professionals

WHAT NEW DOCUMENT ARE IRS REVIEWERS USING TO ASSESS DISCOUNTS FOR LACK OF MARKETABILITY? A Two Hour Webinar on Tuesday, August 23rd Will Answer This Intriguing Question The “Discount for Lack of Marketability Job Aid for IRS Valuation Professionals,” (“IRS DLOM Job Aid”) has recently come to our attention, and we are excited to be …

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8 Essential Elements of an Exit Strategy for Business Owners: Part III

Develop a Strong Management Team The development of a strong management team is usually a necessary consideration in the preparation of an exit strategy. This helps to ensure a smooth transition with some continuity of leadership and talent. One consideration is whether, and when, the owner replaces himself/herself as the CEO. An outside person may …

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8 Essential Elements of an Exit Strategy for Business Owners: Part II

Improve Profitability and Cash Flow A company is more valuable when it is profitable and has good cash flow.  Therefore, an owner should always strive to have the company as profitable as possible.  Several steps can be taken to improve the profitability of a company. If the owners are paying personal expenses through the business …

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8 Essential Elements of an Exit Strategy for Business Owners: Part I

At some point in time, every business owner will need to transition their business to new owners, which could be a business partner or management buy out, a transfer to family members or an outright sale of the business on the open market.  Regardless of the expected exit strategy, every business and business-owner should probably …

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Is Your Company Vulnerable to Fraud – Part II: Fraud Indicator Checklist

HOW TO USE THE CHECKLIST 1. Review the concept for each internal control area and answer the questions following each section. 2. Each answer identifies an area that needs stronger internal controls. I. SEGREGATION OF DUTIES Concepts: • Certain accounting/bookkeeping functions are designed to cross-reference each other for accuracy.  If the same person is responsible for multiple duties, the …

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Is Your Company Vulnerable to Fraud? Part 1

Evaluate your business’ vulnerability with this simple checklist The opportunity for fraud in your business may be greater than you think.  It may be quite easy to pull off and it may come from one of your most trusted staff.  How does your company measure up in controlling the potential for fraud and what can …

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