Litigation matters that commonly require a business valuation expert include:
- Partnership/shareholder disputes
- Dissenting shareholder and shareholder oppression actions
- Gift/estate tax litigation
- Buy-Sell Agreement disputes
- Business damages (e.g. lost profits or diminution of value)
Once a need is identified and the expert is selected, you will need to determine whether to retain them as consulting or testifying expert. Prior to amended Rule 26 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, attorneys were inclined to retain two business valuation experts – one as consulting expert and another as testifying expert. This was done as a strategy to avoid discovery of draft work product. Now, with amended Rule 26, attorneys are retaining one business valuation expert to fill both roles (i.e. consulting and testifying expert). This option typically makes the litigation process more efficient and cost-effective.
The following are some additional tips on how to fully utilize a business valuation expert in a litigation matter:
- Retain the expert early on!
- They can assist with discovery and case planning.
- They can help reduce deadline continuations and other delays.
- If contacted late in the process, some experts may decline an engagement if a deadline is unreasonable given their schedule and workload.
- Business valuation experts can assist with the review of an opposing expert’s valuation report.
- They can assist in the preparation of opposing expert deposition and/or trial questions.
- They can help draft direct examination questions in order to ensure certain points are made during testimony.
- They can prepare trial exhibits to help a judge and/or jury understand the financial issues at hand.
Pacific Business Valuation’s professionals have been retained as experts in numerous litigation matters. Please feel free to contact us to discuss your needs in confidentiality.