Why you need a CPA on your fraud litigation team
Even an extensive fraud prevention program can’t guarantee your company will escape fraud-related legal action. If you decide to initiate a civil suit or press criminal charges against an employee involved in fraud, you’ll need every resource at your disposal. One of the most critical is the expertise of a certified public accountant.
Expert in your corner
Fraud cases can involve anything from falsified financial statements to embezzlement, tax fraud and insurance scams. But typically they have one thing in common: They involve large amounts of complex financial documents. Experienced CPAs can help your legal team collect and summarize such documents, and they may be able to reconstruct lost or stolen records.
They also can be enlisted to analyze and translate financial data for attorneys, insurers and other interested parties. As a case moves forward, a CPA can assist with depositions, finding ways to frame questions that attorneys will ask witnesses. They’re skilled at spotting inconsistencies and flaws in witness testimony and evaluating the opposing side’s evidence for weaknesses or inaccuracies.
Confidence in court
Once a case gets to court, a CPA can serve as an expert witness to help shore up your position with a judge or jury. In general, courts aren’t interested in dry recitations of facts and figures. Good expert witnesses, therefore, put numbers in a framework that their audience can understand.
While those and other services will be useful in any legal proceeding, a CPA uses different skills in different types of cases. In civil actions, for example, plaintiffs must prove they suffered damages and then determine the extent to which the monetary loss from those damages was attributable to the defendant.
A CPA can create a damages model based on factors such as your executive compensation compared with that of other companies, investment rates of return or conditions that affect your business results. Using that model, the expert will determine monetary damages to your company.
Contact us for more information. We can work with your attorney to determine what’s needed in your particular matter.
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