ParenteBeard Forensic Brief
November 2012

AICPA Forensic and Valuation Services Executive Committee on Reducing Litigation Costs

The AICPA and its FVS Executive Committee has made a significant contribution to the current litigation process with Another Voice: Financial Experts on Reducing Client Costs in Civil Litigation. Together they have provided a roadmap to address the increase in the cost of and delay in civil litigation and the inefficient practices commonly encountered in the pretrial process.

After 18 months of study and analysis, the FVS Executive Committee, in conjunction with the Institute for the Advancement of the American Legal System (IAALS), offers plaintiffs, defendants, judges, attorneys, financial experts and others with a stake in the civil justice system the following recommendations to maximize both the effectiveness of financial experts and efficiency of their use in the civil pretrial process:

  • Judges should implement early and consistent active case management;
  • Clients and attorneys should involve experts early in the process;
  • Attorneys should target, focus and streamline expert depositions and discovery;
  • Attorneys’ Daubert-like challenges should be appropriately targeted and acted upon promptly by the court; and
  • Attorneys and the court should develop a process for the collaboration and cooperation of opposing experts where appropriate.

Next Steps: Implementation and Education

The FVS Executive Committee and IAALS recommend that judges and attorneys consider, implement and experiment with these recommendations. Judges can move forward with these recommendations by incorporating them into case management practices and pretrial orders, facilitating conversation during pretrial conferences among parties and experts on the issues identified and promoting innovative and collaborative practices among parties and experts. Attorneys can manage their civil cases with an emphasis on identifying financial expert needs early in the case, streamlining and targeting discovery to maximize information exchange while reducing unnecessary costs and appropriately considering and employing collaborative approaches among financial experts to narrow issues.

The FVS Executive Committee and IAALS will facilitate the consideration and implementation of these recommendations by undertaking broad outreach and education efforts. The committee and IAALS representatives will seek to share and discuss these recommendations at meetings, professional education courses and conferences proactively and at the request of interested individuals and groups.

ParenteBeard’s Glenn Newman served on the task force that researched, interpreted and presented financial perspectives to the IAALS and the FVS Executive Committee. Mr. Newman is a partner in ParenteBeard’s forensic, litigation and valuation services group.

If you have questions about the report or are interested in learning more, please contact Glenn Newman, CPA, ABV, CFF at 215.972.2354 or Glenn.Newman@ParenteBeard.com.

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