NIFA NEWS

Forensic accountants hit the small screen

Viewers of new BBC drama The Split will have seen how forensic accountants are used in divorce cases.

In the show, a very wealthy businessman decides he wants to divorce his wife of 20-plus years and finds a lawyer with a reputation of being fierce in her negotiations to represent him.

Unfortunately for him, his wife opts to engage a similarly thorough lawyer – who happens to be the daughter of her husband’s legal representative.

When the lawyer shows the wife a list of her husband’s assets, she quickly realises that there are several items missing – such as his yachts and a jet.

Realising that the husband is being less than transparent, her lawyer then advises her to engage a forensic accountant to go through the assets and provide a proper valuation.

The forensic accountant will also, no doubt, comb through his business and personal life to find anything he may have ‘forgotten’ to list.

Forensic accountants are extremely experienced in such matters and can help to find any missing or hidden assets especially with the aid of someone who can point them in the right direction, such as the wife in this case.

These specialists are not always engaged in divorce or civil cases but can also play an important role in criminal trials acting both for the defence and prosecution.

Roger Isaacs, Forensic Partner at Milsted Langdon, said: “Forensic accountants can play a number of roles in complex legal disputes – but, regardless of which side they are instructed by, the person who appointed them can rest assured that, if large amounts are at stake, a thorough forensic financial analysis will almost always be a worthwhile investment of time and effort.”

Author: Roger Isaacs 8 May 2018

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