Dispute Resolution Insights: Working with lawyers.

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The GAO Method guides us in writing concise, evidence-based reports. Expert reports should be almost directly admissible as materials to be used in court. From our experiences with lawyers and Singapore Courts, we have refined our methodology to include 4 key aspects that make our reports clear and accessible to our clients.

  1. Past experiences

We draw from our past experiences and deep research to look for precedent legal cases that can be used as support. We also work closely with lawyers and their associates in order to present the most appropriate precedent cases for specific issues brought up in defenses. Additionally, as a known name in the financial industry, we learn of many financial events or transactions that we then draw on as possible precedents to a case.

2. Detail and transparency

Our valuation methodology is detailed and transparent. We aim to produce all intermediate workings, methods and assumptions in our reports, so our clients can fully understand the financial picture behind any case. Our models are always dis-aggregated into smaller operations that can be appropriately valued, and then recombined to produce an accurate final value. We draw heavily on our partners’ years of experiences at major investment banks to construct a working financial model that is conservative and representative of any business.

3. Industry standards

We understand these standards and draw on our knowledge to provide support for our assumptions and methods. For example, instead of using book value (used more in accounting and regulatory reporting), we tend to use the Market and Income-based Approaches to value ongoing businesses that require future assumptions. We are able to provide supporting documentation for our assumptions because we fully understand our industry and the authoritative writings that participants trust.

4. Language and formatting

Our reports are structurally adaptable to court documents such as affidavits. Because we receive feedback from our lawyers as to what we can improve on, we have been able to make great strides in drafting documents that our clients can easily adopt. A quick comparison between a report we wrote in 2017 and the actual affidavit used in court will reveal that over 90% of our report was used verbatim in the affidavit – with only minor formatting changes.