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Forensic and Dispute Advisory Services

Going Beyond the Numbers to Find Truth in Times of Financial Adversity with Forensic and Dispute Advisory Services

As business disputes arise, having experts who provide clear and credible analysis that will withstand the scrutiny of courts, arbitrators, mediators and opposing counsel is critical to a successful resolution. Cherry Bekaert’s Forensic and Dispute Advisory Services group brings together accounting, consulting and forensic experience to provide the insight and clarity required to meet the challenges of litigation and other corporate disputes with confidence.

Our professionals assist clients in navigating and responding to the financial aspects of business crises, controversies, damages and complex transactions. We work with businesses and law firms of all sizes, both as consultants and testifying experts. Our professionals have extensive experience in analyzing financial information to uncover issues that impact liability and damages, as well as crafting discovery requests that reveal information beneficial to the case.

We provide objective, independent and thoughtful analysis to clients while presenting complex financial information as testifying experts in ways that judges and juries can understand and accept.

Our Forensic and Dispute Advisory Services include:

  • Commercial Damage Analysis and Business Losses

    We have over four decades of experience in assisting clients in the calculation of lost profits in commercial litigation matters and business interruption claims in connection with insured events. Recoveries in these matters have totaled in excess of tens of billions of dollars. In the case of insurance claims, we calculate lost profits and extra expenses resulting from business disruptions, including natural disasters and other insurable events and assist our clients in their filing and collection of these claims. These services also extend to all aspects of FEMA claims including property damage assessment and coverage and reimbursement determination.

    The foundation of our damage analysis starts with gaining a core understanding of the affected business and its operations. This includes a thorough study and analysis of historical financial and operating data, utilizing sophisticated data analytics, conducting interviews with key personnel, and gathering industry, marketing and other critical information. This enables us to understand how a company performed before, during and after its disruption, considering seasonal impacts and other relevant economic or industry trends that impacted its financial performance.

    Once a clear picture of the business has been established, our forensic and dispute advisory team determines the business’s lost revenues and profits, accounting for the relevant facts and circumstances.

    Our notable insurance claims recovery experience includes representing clients on some of the most economically impactful natural disasters, including Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Ian, Ida, Laura, Michael, Gustav and Ike. Other notable engagements involving catastrophic events include the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, the largest oil spill in U.S. history and one of the worst environmental disasters ever, where we were engaged to calculate the business and individual losses of thousands of claimants for payment by BP. These claims included those for the states of Louisiana, Mississippi and Florida, and many of their local governments. Our efforts in calculating these governmental lost profits resulted in the largest economic environmental disaster settlement on record in the U.S., totaling in excess of $20 billion dollars.

  • Fraud, Detection and Recovery

    In today’s digital world, it’s essential to be aware of the risks of corporate crime, fraud and litigation. We understand how hard business owners worked to build their business, and we know how important it is to protect the business enterprise’s reputation and integrity. Our certified fraud examiners can assist with fraud detection and recovery in areas including the manipulation of accounting records, corrupt practices, cash embezzlements and cyber fraud.

    Our fraud detection and recovery experience include:

    • Financial Investigations
    • Forensic Analysis of Records
    • Data Analytics
    • Fraud Detection
    • Fraud Prevention
    • Fraud Recovery
    • Internal Control System Evaluation, Implementation and Monitoring
  • Expert Witness Testimony

    Cherry Bekaert’s testifying experts provide credible and objective testimony on behalf of our clients in ways that both judges and jurors can understand and accept. Our expert witnesses bridge the legal-accounting technical divide and draw on first-hand experience gained in a wide range of industries, including construction and engineering, energy and natural resources, infrastructure and real estate, healthcare, life sciences, media and technology, hospitality, state and local governments, and financial and professional services. These clients range in size from local, privately owned businesses to multinational Fortune 100 companies.

    The success of an expert witness stems from clarity, education, training and experience. Our highly skilled testifiers with these credentials prepare expertly crafted reports that describe and explain their opinions in ways that the readers can understand. We utilize compelling, demonstrative graphic evidence to present complex information to the courts. Our solid financial and business experience is complemented with the use of advanced technology, including digital forensic tools and software, that enable us to present complex information in the simplest terms.

    The breadth of our extensive successful expert witness experience in federal, state and local courts throughout the U.S. includes:

    • Expert Witness Reports and Testimony of Accounting and Financial Matters
    • Economic Damages Calculation, Reports and Evaluation
    • Quantifying Lost Profits and Business Interruption Losses
    • Fraud Detection and Recovery
    • Shareholder Disputes
    • Class Action Claims
    • Analysis and Explanation of Complex Financial Transactions
    • Corporate Veil Piercing and Single Business Enterprise Determinations
    • Bankruptcy Disputes
    • Wrongful Termination and Employment Claims
    • Probate Matters – Accountings and Disputes
    • Lost Wages
    • Whistleblower Investigations
  • Shareholder Disputes

    Shareholder disputes can be stressful, complex and challenging to resolve. In these matters, it is essential to seek out experienced financial experts in the early stages of these matters before a situation adversely impacts a company’s financial position and public image. We are committed to assisting our clients in uncovering the critical facts and circumstances unique to their specific situation. Our capabilities include fraud detection and recovery, forensic accounting, expert witness testimony and related advisory services.

    Whether you’re looking to reduce the risks of shareholder disputes or resolve an ongoing one, our forensic accountants are here to assist you through this process in providing the guidance, logistics and analytics that you need to make sense of your situation.

    Our team is ready to assist you with:

    • Alleged Breaches of a Shareholder Agreement
    • Fiduciary Misconduct
    • Shareholder Derivative Actions
    • Appointment of Receivers
    • Minority Shareholder Disputes
    • Differences in Contribution Versus Compensation
    • Business Valuations
    • Sales, Mergers and Acquisitions
    • Bankruptcies
  • Class Action Claims

    Cherry Bekaert’s class action experience includes our appointment by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York and for the District of Delaware in the bankruptcies of the notable pharmaceutical companies of Purdue Pharma, LP and Mallinckrodt, PLC where we represent the bankruptcy trustee on behalf of over 500 acute care hospitals throughout the U.S. in connection with their claims in these bankruptcies. The amounts of claims administered by us have totaled in excess of $100 million. Our services have entailed the use of sophisticated data analytics of over 100 million data points to calculate lost profits of these bankruptcy claimants.

    Our services in other class action claims have also included settlements in connection with the BP Horizon Oil Spill, where we calculated the losses of Gulf Coast businesses, states and local governments totaling in excess of $20 billion, and the defense of a national, Fortune 500 financial institution in connection with the class action allegations of service member Credit Relief Act violations.

  • Complex Financial Transactions

    With a keen understanding of financial arrangements and a commitment to uncovering the facts, Cherry Bekaert offers comprehensive solutions to businesses, law firms and their clients in connection with complex financial transactions in matters before the trier of fact. Our team of seasoned professionals combines extensive training and experience in accounting, finance and forensic investigative techniques to deliver objective results.

    In analyzing complex financial transactions, our forensic accountants frequently uncover fraudulent transactions including:

    • Fraudulent Misrepresentations
    • Ponzi Schemes
    • Money Laundering
    • Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) Violations
    • Bribery and Other Corruption
    • Fraudulent Transactions, including Billing Schemes
  • Whistleblower Investigations

    Cherry Bekaert’s Forensic and Dispute Advisory team is committed to integrity, accuracy and professionalism in every whistleblower investigation. Our goal is to help our clients safeguard their assets, protect their reputations and promote a culture of transparency and accountability within their organizations.

    Our whistleblower investigation service offerings include:

    • Providing confidential channels for employees or third parties to report concerns regarding fraud, corruption, or other unethical behavior
    • Conducting impartial and comprehensive inquiries to validate allegations and determine the extent of wrongdoing
    • Working closely with management and legal counsel to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements and protect the confidentiality of all parties involved
    • Our reports are detailed and transparent, providing clear findings and recommendations for the recovery of corporate assets and remediation actions to prevent future occurrences
  • Bankruptcy Disputes (Trustees and Receiverships)

    Cherry Bekaert’s Forensic and Dispute Advisory team provides value-added financial accounting and consulting services to fiduciaries, debtors, creditors and other parties of interest in bankruptcy proceedings. Our results-driven approach focuses on maximizing value for our clients and other stakeholders at all stages, including pre- and post-bankruptcy proceedings. Our areas of focus include:

    • Solvency Analysis
    • Tracing of Funds
    • Analysis of Preference Actions and Fraudulent Conveyances (Avoidance Actions)
    • Analysis of Proofs of Claim
    • Distribution Calculations
    • Evaluation of Potential Mismanagement and Fraud
    • Identification and Analysis of Insider Transactions
    • Expert Reports, Affidavits, Declarations, Discovery, Depositions and Trial Testimony

    With decades of successful experience investigating fraud, consulting on litigation matters and providing expert testimony, our team of professionals brings a unique perspective to the forensic analyses required to find effective resolution to disputes within the bankruptcy and restructuring process.

  • Intellectual Property Disputes

    Intellectual property (IP) disputes, whether around trademark, patent or copyright issues, are as complex as they are expensive to litigate. Cherry Bekaert’s Forensic and Dispute Advisory professionals are well versed in the determination, evaluation and presentation of damages involving IP.

    Our IP services include:

    • Assessment of Reasonable Royalties
    • Infringement and Misappropriation of Trade Secrets
    • Lost Profits
    • Unjust Enrichment and Profit Disgorgement
    • Financial Analyses to Aid in Settlement and Licensing Negotiations
    • Calculating Pre- and Post-Judgment Interest

    Our team of experienced professionals has been entrusted by law firms, companies of all sizes, individuals and inventors to provide independent expert opinions and analyses for all aspects of IP matters.

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Lori Smith

Lori Smith

Partner, Forensic & Dispute Advisory Services

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William (Bill) Legier

William (Bill) Legier

Managing Director, Forensic & Dispute Advisory Services

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John Collier

John Collier

Managing Director, Forensic & Dispute Advisory Services

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Jacqueline (J.C.) Tuthill

Jacqueline (J.C.) Tuthill

Managing Director, Forensic & Dispute Advisory Services

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