Accounting Firm Gettry Marcus Discusses Four Phases of a Litigation Case That Could Benefit From the Involvement of a Forensic Accountant

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Gettry Marcus CPA, P.C., a leading consulting, tax and forensic accounting firm, discusses the instances when a forensic accountant can play a vital role in the outcome of a litigation case.

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Gettry Marcus is "Always Looking Deeper" to build value for our clients.

Leading tax, consulting and forensic accounting firm Gettry Marcus provides information on the timing of when a forensic accountant can play a vital role in the outcome of a litigation case. Hiring the forensic accountant as early as possible allows the forensic accountant to assist the attorney in a variety of ways, including making a preliminary determination as to the merits of the litigation. Due to the unique circumstances of each case, the forensic accountant’s role can differ from one assignment to another, and may even change as a case advances through the litigation process. There are many different facets within each litigation case where an attorney can benefit from the services of a forensic accountant, and these can be divided into four general phases:

(1) Foundational - provide assistance in the case development and discovery stages, and assist in defining the financial framework of the case. Assess the quality of the documents to determine what might be relevant.

(2) Interpersonal - conduct interviews to aid in the planning and execution of case data collection, and perform background research on the people and entities relevant to the matter.

(3) Data collection and analysis - accumulate the data, and marshal the necessary analytical tasks to either support or refute the legal theories presented. If requested, assist in any hearings, conferences and settlement negotiations.

(4) Expert report and trial - aggregate all of the forensic accountant’s conclusions during the assignment, followed by the submission of an expert report, and possibly testify at deposition or trial. If requested by the attorney, the forensic accountant can critique the opposing expert’s report.

This is only an abbreviated list of assignments that the forensic accountant can perform. In addition, each of these tasks can be expanded to encompass a greater role for the forensic accountant. For example, when providing assistance in the discovery phase, the forensic accountant could collaborate with the attorney to determine the appropriate universe of data required for the specific engagement. Thereafter, the forensic accountant would continuously evaluate and interpret the documents that were received from the opposing party, along with their relevance and reliability.

In the data collection and analysis phase of the case, the forensic accountant would investigate the financial documents received, perform research, and apply financial forensic tools and techniques such as trending, benchmarking, and ratio analysis.

Depending on the case requirements, the forensic accountant may deploy digital analysis techniques by using data mining software to test for anomalies by examining case specific digit patterns and other relevant characteristics.

Litigation attorneys can often attain dramatic leverage at the negotiating table and in the courtroom by being able to present quantifiable data in clear, cogent terms. A case that is substantiated by indisputable testimony will most often be received favorably. A skilled forensic accountant in the litigation arena can act as powerful support to the retaining attorney by helping the attorney to present or defend claims. Learn more about the role of a forensic accountant at the Gettry Marcus website.

The information contained in this communication is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as legal or accounting advice on any subject matter. It is not intended or written to be used, and it cannot be used, for a particular matter. These articles are prepared to present matters of general interest relating to business valuation, forensic accounting and litigation support topics. They do not render an opinion by Gettry Marcus CPA, P.C., its partners, or employees on any technical matter; but rather are of an educational nature. Gettry Marcus CPA, P.C. disclaims all liability with respect to actions taken or not taken based on any or all of the contents of this communication.

Gettry Marcus CPA, P.C., a top New York City and Long Island CPA firm with offices in Woodbury, Long Island and New York City. We provide accounting, tax, and consulting services to commercial businesses, high net worth individuals and various industries which include real estate and health care. We have one of the premier and most credentialed business valuation, litigation and forensic accounting groups in the New York Area. Our experience in diverse industries and a highly talented and experienced professional staff gives us the ability to share valuable insights into our clients’ businesses, to better understand their goals and problems and to help them attain the vision they have for their company.

Gettry Marcus is "Always Looking Deeper" to build value for our clients.

Media inquiries: Contact Stacey Ellenthal at 516-364-3390 ext. 247 or at
Sellenthal (at) gettrymarcus (dot) com


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Stacey Ellenthal
Gettry Marcus CPA, P.C.
+1 516-364-3390 Ext: 247
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