Financial Remedy Proceedings

We get involved in all stages of financial settlement, providing advisory assistance with the completion of the Form E, Questionnaires and Duxbury Calculations and acting as expert in preparing reports dealing with business valuation, liquidity and taxation issues. Sally Longworth is a renowned expert in the field, as well as acting as single joint expert, she is also engaged as single party expert and shadow expert in high value cases and has prepared advisory reports for use in mediation. In 2009 she co-wrote a book, Company Valuation – the Experts’ View, for Resolution. In valuing businesses she is able to use the expertise she acquired in corporate finance, working on transactions.

She is assisted by Paul Sharman, who has acted as business advisor to family owned businesses for many years and has a thorough knowledge of the workings of family businesses, methods of withdrawing income and the tax implications. He can also advise on the capital gains tax implications of financial settlement.

The team are also involved in looking at fraud issues and the dissipation of assets and have worked on a number of asset tracing exercises, involving trusts funds, off shore and overseas companies and complex family business structures.

We would normally expect to be able to produce an advisory letter or report within three or four weeks of instruction and a draft expert report within six weeks of instruction. But this is dependent on the completeness of the information provided to us.

Examples of Cases

Party expert for husband, owner of technology company

Acting for the owner of a technology company, Sally Longworth was first appointed as shadow adviser but due to issues identified in the single joint expert’s report, notably concerning the treatment of directors’ remuneration and the weighting given to prior year results in arriving at maintainable earnings, the husband got leave from the court to appoint Sally as his own expert. The case went to Court and Sally Longworth gave evidence.

Adviser to wife, assisting with questionnaire

The husband had recently sold one of his business interests to a major company, and the sales price included earn out clauses and a consultancy term which meant the husband was contracted to remain working for the company for a two year period. The wife needed advice on the capital gains tax implications of the business sale and an interpretation of the earn out clauses, as well as an assessment of how the sale consultancy clause would impact on the husband’s other business interests. Sally was able to explain the tax situation, interpret the financial aspects of the sale purchase agreement, indicate its likely impact on the financial assets, provide input into the Questionnaire and provide support and assistance to the legal team in reaching a negotiated settlement.

Single joint expert, valuing a multi-million pound portfolio of businesses

Appointed as single joint expert to value an Entrepreneur’s business portfolio. The portfolio was diverse, comprising over 40 companies, including new start ups, two property groups and an offshore tax avoidance business. The report also addressed liquidity issues, capital gains tax and the husband’s sustainable income.

Other single joint experts appointments:

Valuation of the husband’s shares in a business. He has recently disposed of a large portion of his shareholding to the majority shareholder and the terms of the disposal of his remaining shares was restricted by provisions in the initial sale and purchase agreement.

Assessment of the capital gains tax due on the disposal of the parties property and business assets.

Valuation of a business owned by the husband and his family, and identified attempts to reduce the husband’s shares in the business, through transactions amongst the husband’s family.

Valuation of a land fill site, based in an old quarry. The business had one major contract and a finite life as capacity was limited. Therefore the valuation was based on a discounted cash flow.

Valuation and assessment of liquidity of husband’s interest in 30 business ventures, including 7 partnerships, 21 limited companies, a joint venture and an unincorporated business.