What’s the Difference Between an Expert Consultant and Expert Witness?

As an expert consultant, the CPA/CVA/CFE is engaged to develop information that will be used by the attorney in a variety of ways, including settlement negotiations with the opposing side. In these instances, the CPA/CVA/CFE is usually not expected to testify or to develop an opinion that will be entered in to the court records. The documents created by the CPA/CVA/CFE may be protected by attorney-client privilege. In this situation, the CPA/CVA/CFE is working for the client’s advocate.

When a CPA/CVA/CFE is hired as an expert witness, the CPA/CVA/CFE will often have to provide deposition and courtroom testimony, and all of the documents created, including reports relating to the case, are subject to “discovery” by the opposing side. Professional standards prohibit the CVA from being an advocate for the client in situations where an opinion of value is rendered. A valuator is considered to be acting in an unethical manner if he or she advocates the client’s position.

The CVA valuator may be an advocate for his or her own opinion of value. The valuator is supposed to be unbiased and completely independent in rendering an opinion of value. Certified Valuation Analysts are highly trained ethical professionals who have earned the respect of the professional community. Allow us to help in your next case.

Should you need business valuation assistance or have questions, please call one of our credentialed professionals at (615) 822-8342 or contact us via email.