Of necessity, any audit is limited in scope in that it seeks to look at the business as a whole and whether the accounts presented show a true and fair view rather than only perhaps looking at specific aspects. Whilst an audit will generally focus on risk areas in a set of accounts, it won’t be to the exclusion of everything else. For a more in-depth review of specific areas of the business, forensic accounting may be the answer.
As the name suggest, forensic accounting is about reviewing processes, controls or even income and expenditure in much greater detail in order to identify or correct weaknesses, obtain evidence of suspected fraud, search for missing assets and so on.
We can also assist with the valuation of business interests, comment on tax issues and assist when it comes to divorce or business splits.
To take divorce as one example, you finally get access to your spouse’s financial disclosure but things don’t make sense or do not gel with what you thought you knew. Perhaps there’s missing paperwork? Perhaps the value of the family business appears too low? You can’t be sure but your instinct is that assets have been hidden or understated …this is when a forensic accountant can help.
Divorce cases in particular often centre on the division of marital assets and debts, with some simple to divide and others rather more complicated. But this isn’t limited to divorce. Splitting from a business partner can be a similar experience and to be certain of a fair settlement, all assets need to be uncovered and quantified.
We can undertake extensive examinations of accounting records, provide or review valuations and generally support you if there is a problem requiring in-depth work.
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