Read this case before writing your next BV report

“Explain everything” when writing a business valuation report, advises Howard Lewis (International Society of Business Analysts; RiskGuidance Co. LLC). Lewis, formerly with the IRS, spoke at the recent NYSSCPA Business Valuation Conference in New York City, which was covered by BVWire. He says the most common problem with reports is the failure to explain certain conclusions, especially discounts and multiples. “Don’t just state—explain.”

Court cases are a great resource to understand how to craft a report. He asked conference attendees whether anyone knew or could explain what the Gallagher case says about report writing. No one raised his or her hand. “I was shocked that no one appeared to know this case,” Lewis said later. “It’s a great report-writing case.” The judge destroyed both sides over their reports.

Free download: The full text of the case, Estate of Gallagher v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo.2011-148, is available from BVR on its Free Resources page (registration required).