Forensic Accounting & Your Divorce Case: An Investment Now Could Mean Big Benefits Later
Updated: Mar 5, 2019
Going through a divorce can be a complicated process on many levels. When financial issues arise, having the right divorce team can make or break your case. Financial misconduct in a marriage may be difficult to prove or one or both parties may own a business. Should these factors apply to your case, a good divorce attorney might recommend obtaining a forensic accountant.
The definition of forensic accounting as it relates to your divorce case can be simplified as follows: forensic accountants are trained to closely examine and analyze personal and business financial statements. Their findings and testimony can then be used in court to determine the financial outcome of your matter. They can discover both what these statements show and, more importantly, what they hide. Oftentimes, forensic accountants can uncover financial misconduct and hidden assets, which could make an impact on your final divorce settlement.
Forensic Accounting: Property & Business Valuations
Oftentimes, forensic accounting and valuations go hand in hand. If one or both parties own a business or operate under a partnership agreement, getting the fair value of the business is imperative to a fair divorce settlement, especially in closely-held businesses. Furthermore, should varied investments, stock options and other complex financial instruments be present in your financial portfolio, a forensic accountant's skills can be extremely beneficial to receiving a fair and equitable result.
Lastly, it is important to differentiate between separate and joint property when negotiating the financial aspects of your matter. All assets and property must be appraised properly, especially if they are deemed to be joint marital property. A forensic accountant can trace and analyze various transactions to help your attorney determine in which of these categories your assets fall.
Whether you are preparing to file for a divorce or your matter is already pending, finding the right team to help you navigate these complex financial issues is important. The investment now may lead to sizable benefits later.