Searching For Unreported Income

Written by Tracy L. Coenen, CPA, CFF

Wisconsin Law Journal

The million dollar question in many litigation disputes, be it family law, a shareholder divorce, or other corporate wrangling, often centers around unreported income. Are there sales that aren’t being recorded on the books? Is the individual receiving cash for work done? Is revenue hidden to shield it from being considered by the court?

It would be lovely to be able to wave a magic wand and have all the “hidden” income magically appear. Unfortunately, that’s just not going to happen in this lifetime. The search for unreported revenue and earnings is a difficult one.

Read moreSearching For Unreported Income

Behind the Numbers: Critical Financial Analysis in Litigation

The financial portion of a lawsuit is often high-stakes. This is especially true in cases of divorce, breach of contract, securities fraud, tax fraud, money laundering, and white collar criminal defense. Whether the other side is an individual, a company, or the government, you need an accurate analysis of the numbers for the benefit of your client.

There is almost always a story behind the numbers. Things are not always as they appear, and it is unwise to take the financial story at face value. A case can be won or lost based on your ability to find out the hidden truth about the numbers.

Finding the Data

Getting your hands on the right financial data depends on knowing what to ask for. The financial statements and tax returns are the obvious places to start. While they may not always be truthful, they still hold many clues to the financial story.

Read moreBehind the Numbers: Critical Financial Analysis in Litigation