Blogs: Litigated Business Valuation

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The US Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (“TCJA”) passed by Congress on December 20, 2017, will impact forecasts of a company’s cash flow and thereby will likely impact the valuation of a company. One of the forecast elements impacted is the forecast of capital expenditures, depreciation and amortization. The lowering of the C Corporation income […]

The US Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (“TCJA”) passed by Congress on December 20, 2017, will impact forecasts of a company’s cash flow and thereby will likely impact the valuation of a company. One of the forecast elements impacted is the forecast of capital expenditures, depreciation and amortization. The lowering of the C Corporation income […]

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As discussed previously, once it has been determined that a separate business interest appreciated in value during a marriage, learned treatises and case law often delineate the active passive analysis into the following elements: Identifying and quantifying market forces that caused the separate property appreciation. Identifying and quantifying the separate property appreciation caused by the […]

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As discussed previously, once it has been determined that a separate business interest appreciated in value during a marriage, learned treatises and case law often delineate the active passive analysis into the following elements: Identifying and quantifying market forces that caused the separate property appreciation. Identifying and quantifying the separate property appreciation caused by the […]

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The business appraiser performing an active passive appreciation analysis looks to their engaging legal counsel to define and interpret state law in the particular jurisdiction. An active passive analysis is performed when state divorce law requires a determination of whether, and under what circumstances, appreciation in otherwise separate property is classified as a divisible marital […]

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Part II of my working capital blog identified methods often used by business appraisers when forecasting working capital. In this installment, I will present some additional thoughts regarding this topic. Depending on the facts and circumstances, it is typically appropriate to consider the company’s historical working capital ratios and industry working capital metrics at the composite level (e.g. total working capital), as well as each separate component of working capital (e.g. accounts receivable, inventory, accounts payable, etc.).

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Part I of my working capital related blog addressed the impact on free cash flow of changes in current assets and changes in current liabilities, which are the two components that comprise working capital (calculated as current assets minus current liabilities). The combined impact of changes in current assets and changes in current liabilities equals the impact of changes in working capital on free cash flow. Part II of this blog identifies methods often used by business appraisers when forecasting working capital.

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In a business valuation income approach, the income stream being capitalized (in a capitalized income method) or discounted (in a discounted income method) is often the free cash flow generated by the entity being valued. Free cash flow is typically calculated on an after-tax basis, and represents the cash available to a company’s owners after […]

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When valuing a private operating company, an appraiser is likely to use an income approach, either as the main valuation method or in conjunction with another method. Whether the appraiser capitalizes cash flows in a capitalized cash flow (“CCF”) model or uses forecasts of future cash flows in a discounted cash flow (“DCF”) model, they have incorporated both explicit and implicit assumptions into the cash flows used in their model.

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Forecasts of future cash flows within the income approach to business valuation are loaded with assumptions. During my nearly two decades of business valuation experience, I have reviewed hundreds of valuation reports prepared by other experts that serve as a constant reminder that mathematical accuracy does not always equate to a reasonable value. I have seen erroneous assumptions made by business appraisers that range from illogical disconnects within the valuation to outright errors or unsubstantiated speculation. 

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In my last blog post, I explained what an active/passive appreciation study is, scenarios in which it would be conducted and the value that a business valuation expert brings to the table when performing the analysis. As a refresher, an active/passive appreciation study is often required in matrimonial litigation when an existing business or business interest is owned by one spouse prior to the marriage, or is gifted or bequeathed to one spouse during the marriage. Since we have covered the basics, we can now dive deeper and discuss the various phases and steps of an active/passive appreciation study.

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When going through a divorce, determining the marital value of private business interests can often get tricky – this is especially true if one spouse has a separate ownership interest in a business. An active/passive appreciation study is often required in matrimonial litigation when an existing business or business interest is owned by one spouse prior to the marriage, or is gifted or bequeathed to one spouse during the marriage.

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Reflecting back on the performance of more than 1,000 business valuations over the last 20-plus years, I have observed the regular occurrence of an economic event in many divorce-related engagements that I have named the Pre-divorce Business Downturn Syndrome (“PBDS” for short).

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