Forensic accounting plays a key role in resolving disputes in the UK. Whether you’re a business leader or lawyer representing a private client, explore the key forensic services offered by Evelyn Partners.
Specialised forensic services can make all the difference in resolving a contentious financial dispute between two parties or strengthening a legal case.
You may be a lawyer handling complex valuations during divorce proceedings or a business leader seeking support with an internal fraud investigation. Perhaps you’re a solicitor calculating personal injury losses or run a company embroiled in a commercial dispute.
Whatever your needs, Evelyn Partners is on hand to deliver a diverse range of forensic accounting solutions right across the UK. Take a closer look at what makes us unique and the key forensic services we offer.
Who can benefit from forensic consulting services?
Financial forensic services can benefit both businesses and legal advisers representing clients.
Focusing on accountancy work with a litigious or contentious angle, here are just a few examples of where these services can help:
- Moving quickly to establish the facts and track down any lost assets if a business has fallen foul of corporate fraud.
- Responding to complex commercial disputes within a tight timeframe.
- Providing the technical expertise to navigate data minefields if an industry regulator suddenly demands facts and figures stretching back years.
- Valuing a business or quantifying loss of profits to meet the demands of courts in a legal dispute.
Despite their complexities, these aren’t niche or low-priority challenges to put aside for another day. Instead, they’re highly serious issues that businesses and legal advisers come up against frequently, with the potential to reshape their financial future.
Dealing with them effectively takes a dedicated team with the skills and experience to achieve the best outcome, no matter how tight the deadline.
What forensic services does Evelyn Partners offer?
From long-established business ventures to lawyers working on behalf of individuals, our forensic accounting solutions cover a broad mix of UK and overseas clients.
What makes Evelyn Partners different?
Our forensic consulting team always works on a case-by-case basis, adapting at speed to the unique challenges facing your business or client. This personal, highly tailored approach is just one of many attributes that makes our forensic services stand out.
Mix of talents and expertise
Right from the start, you’ll have direct access to our highly qualified team of forensic services experts. They include accountants, valuation specialists, technology experts, fraud investigators and former police officers.
Fewer conflicts of interest
As one of the UK’s top 10 accountancy firms* and with a strong track record in key forensic services, we have deep experience. But our structure throws up fewer conflicts of interest than many of our competitors.
*Source: Accountancy Age, 2021
Assistance that won’t break the bank
We understand the need to control the costs of forensic services. Our approach is proportionate and flexible, allowing us to meet your needs without cost constraints. Our competitive rates keep forensic accounting affordable across the UK.
Engagement from lead partners
Our highest-level partners and directors are always happy to get involved in the detail of cases. This means our forensic services are delivered by the most experienced members of our team.
Support beyond the UK
As a founding member of CLA Global Limited, Evelyn Partners provides a truly international service. Being a part of this leading worldwide network of independent firms, we are well positioned and have extensive experience to support you with your international requirements.
What can our clients expect from us?
With Evelyn Partners, comprehensive forensic insights are just the start of what you can expect…
Enviable track record
Our experts in financial forensic services have years of experience providing evidence in complex, high-value commercial disputes. We offer assistance both in the UK and internationally.
In total, we’ve carried out more than 200 investigations. Cases have involved false accounting, procurement fraud, theft, allegations of impropriety and treasury fraud.
Evelyn Partners is a founding member of CLA Global Limited (CLA Global), a market-leading, mid-market international accounting network of independent firms. CLA Global serves clients in over 100 countries, focusing on privately-owned international businesses and their owners.
Through this global network and our breadth of experience, we offer a truly international service and can support your business if you are expanding overseas, moving into the UK or already operating internationally.
Our forensic services experts never work in siloes. Using an end-to-end approach, we’ll logically guide you from one step of the process to the next.
This stops important issues from falling through the cracks and is something that sets us apart from the crowd.
Working at different scales
Our agile approach allows us to assist on cases both big and small. Our work goes all the way from large-scale corporate fraud cases to supporting lawyers with personal injury losses.
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Frequently asked questions about forensic services
What is a forensic consultant or accountant?
A forensic accountant is an expert accountant, who works on contentious matters that are likely to lead to legal proceedings, whether a tribunal or court case. Forensic accountants can support litigation by providing expert evidence and advice.
Many forensic accountants are also fraud investigators, supporting businesses to recover from instances of fraud.
How does digital forensics work?
Digital forensics works by identifying and analysing electronic data. When formatted correctly, this data can then be used to support legal cases in a court of law. The digital forensic services offered by Evelyn Partners can help recover, investigate and present electronic data.
What is a forensic audit?
Forensic auditing is a specialist service offered by experienced accountancy practices. A forensic audit examines the records of a company or individual to identify evidence that could support a legal case. It may bring to light financial statement fraud, conflicts of interest or other suspected corruption, for example.
Why would I need a forensic accountant?
Forensic accountants typically assist with historical events linked to a dispute or allegation of wrongdoing. Their forensic services can cover things like fraud, remedial accounting, and valuations of assets or lost earnings, for example in contractual disputes or divorce cases.
How can a forensic accountant help me?
Forensic accountants can provide a wide variety of services, such as:
- Preliminary case evaluation.
- Provision of an independent expert report for use in court.
- Assistance with complex financial disclosure requirements.
- Quantifying various scenarios or issues for mediation.
- Valuing a business, asset or shareholding under contentious circumstances.
- Reviewing a business for fraudulent activity.
- Quantifying lost earnings.
- Performing wide-ranging analysis of financial data, such as asset tracing and account restatement.
Who do forensic accountants work with?
Forensic accounting solutions support a wide range of clients in the UK and overseas. Some examples include:
- People and entities in a shareholder dispute.
- People and entities suing another party for damages, for example for a breach of contract or warranty.
- People and entities involved with or accused of fraud, or impacted by the Proceeds of Crime Act.
- People and entities involved in or impacted by a professional negligence dispute.
- Individuals in a divorce proceeding who require an independent valuation of assets.
- People, entities and councils involved in a compulsory purchase order.
When should a forensic accountant review my case?
Forensic accountants can be engaged at any time, from a preliminary review to advise on potential outcomes to when a case is well established.
However, earlier engagement will allow us to provide more input into case management. For example, helping with understanding the merits of the claim with you and your solicitors, drafting of pleadings, disclosure requirements and quantum issues.
In which courts and forums has your forensic services team operated?
Our forensic services team is regularly engaged in cases across the criminal, civil and family courts in the UK, and in various international commercial litigation forums. Cases involve various regulatory bodies and international competition authorities.
Do you accept forensic accounting work outside the UK?
Yes, our workstreams often have an international element. For example, our team has worked in jurisdictions including the UK, Channel Islands, US, Europe, Singapore, Brazil and India.
What is an expert witness?
An expert witness provides an independent expert opinion, within their area of expertise, to assist a court in relation to disputed matters. An expert witness cannot act as an advocate. Their evidence on matters within their expertise is given more weight than evidence provided by witnesses that are a party to the proceedings.
What should I do if I suspect financial statements have been misstated due to fraud or error?
It’s a good idea to contact a forensic accountant if you believe financial statements have been misstated. The forensic services team at Evelyn Partners has a range of specialisms. Depending on the nature of your concerns, we can:
- Perform investigations to identify whether fraud and/or error has caused a misstatement. We also have forensic technology experts who can ensure evidence is gathered and preserved in the manner required for any potential legal claim.
- Perform reviews of your financial statements to determine whether they were prepared in accordance with the relevant accounting standards. We have financial reporting experts in IFRS and UK GAAP, including each of the SORPs.
- Assist in considering whether there is a basis for an auditor negligence claim.
- Assist in determining restatements required in the financial statements.
What types of cases does your disputes team work on?
Our disputes team works across a variety of cases, including:
- Loss of profit claims
- Breach of warranty cases
- Breach of contract cases
- Shareholder disputes
- International arbitration
- Providing preliminary advice in advance of litigation
- Professional negligence cases
- Financial reporting disputes
- Business valuations
- Claims for consequential losses
- Intellectual property disputes
What account misstatement cases have you provided opinions on?
We have provided our expertise in many areas of accounting (and/or the audit of that area), including IFRS and UK GAAP, across each of the SORPs. For example, we’ve provided expert opinion where:
- Assets have been fraudulently presented in the financial statements as being owned by the company when in fact they were not.
- There were significant unauthorised related party transactions which, had they been appropriately reflected in the financial statements, would have led to intervention by the board and losses avoided.
- Financial statements were drawn up using a going concern assumption when that assumption wasn’t valid.
- A company had overstated its assets using ‘cross firing’. This is where a business falsely records additional assets arising out of payments and receipts between related companies.