Exiting lockdown: forensic accounting services during lift-off

2 June 2020 / Insight posted in Operations

Now that the first tentative steps are being taken to lift lockdown, there are several areas where our forensic accounting team can assist you. Our specialists have decades of experience in complex cases and produce clear and comprehensive reports to help you navigate challenging times.

Business interruption claims
It is possible that some companies are covered under their insurance for pandemics, and they will need to submit a schedule of any losses suffered to their insurers as part of any claim they may submit. We can help you assemble the evidence to support such claims. The sooner we are involved, the better equipped we are to assist.

Share valuations
We can provide expert valuation services in circumstances where shareholders are in dispute, or where new or revised valuations are required in an ongoing action.

Compulsory purchase claims
We are one of a handful of forensic accounting teams with experience and expertise in advising on business losses arising from compulsory purchase claims. We work with both claimants and acquiring authorities to ensure fair compensation is arrived at.

Fraud and investigations
Fraudulent activity is often uncovered when the perpetrator is away from the office and unable to continue covering their tracks. Similarly, in times of financial hardship, companies often focus more on costs with the result that frauds come to light. Conversely, individuals may take advantage of the current situation to defraud companies or otherwise misappropriate funds/business. We have the expertise to conduct fraud investigations to inform those instructing us how the fraud was perpetrated and concealed, quantify the losses incurred, and provide recommendations to help prevent future occurrence.

Professional negligence
Increased corporate fraud will mean a corresponding increase in professional negligence claims against auditors and accountants in the firing line from shareholders and liquidators for non-detection. We have significant experience acting for both claimants and defendants in professional negligence claims, involving auditors and accountants, in many of which we added value at the outset by advising parties on the merits of their case.

Matrimonial cases
Much has been written in the press recently suggesting that divorce filings may increase as a result of the lockdown. While these couples will obviously need solicitors in the first instance, any financial assets such as businesses will need to be valued as part of the matrimonial pot. We can be instructed by both parties on a joint basis, or as a shadow expert where a jointly instructed expert has already been instructed.

Breach of contract
Companies may have found their customers or suppliers have reneged on agreed timescales or projects because of the lockdown and accompanying restrictions. This may have caused a loss of profits, or a future loss of profits, which the injured party may wish to reclaim via discussions or via a legal process. Some suppliers may have increased their prices beyond an agreed contractual amount, and have caused a loss of profits as a result. We are specialists in the quantification of business loss of profit claims, having acted on a wide range of business disturbance disputes covering multiple industries and sectors.

For assistance on any of these matters, please contact our team.