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In Gatekeeper Role, Court Trains Attention on Expert Methodology, Not Conclusions

In ESOP case pivoting on valuation, court denies parties’ Daubert challenges; court notes “gatekeeping” means focusing “on principles and methodology, not the conclusions that [the experts] generate”; parties’ objections are mostly quarrels with opposing expert’s conclusions, court finds.

Acosta v. Wilmington Trust, N.A. (I) (Graphite)

In ESOP case pivoting on valuation, court denies parties’ Daubert challenges; court notes “gatekeeping” means focusing “on principles and methodology, not the conclusions that [the experts] generate”; parties’ objections are mostly quarrels with opposing expert’s conclusions, court finds.

Claims Against Third-Party Appraisal Crumple Under ‘Palpable Error’ Standard

In buyout dispute, court rejects plaintiff’s request to set aside third-party appraisal performed pursuant to valuation agreement; court notes its limited role and high “palpable error” standard; alleged mistakes were not apparent on face of appraisal and there was no misconduct by appraiser.

Olli Salumeria Americana, LLC v. Vosmik

In buyout dispute, court rejects plaintiff’s request to set aside third-party appraisal performed pursuant to valuation agreement; court notes its limited role and high “palpable error” standard; alleged mistakes were not apparent on face of appraisal and there was no misconduct by appraiser.

Solvency Determination Turns on Income Recognition Analysis

Court credits trustee expert’s analysis of debtor’s balance sheet, finding the expert showed debtor’s practice of immediate recognition of initial franchise fees as revenue violated GAAP and debtor was continuously insolvent; transfers are avoidable.

Solvency Determination Turns on Income Recognition Analysis

Court credits trustee expert’s analysis of debtor’s balance sheet, finding the expert showed debtor’s practice of immediate recognition of initial franchise fees as revenue violated GAAP and debtor was continuously insolvent; transfers are avoidable.

Redmond v. NCMIC Fin. Corp. (In re Brooke Corp.)

Court credits trustee expert’s analysis of debtor’s balance sheet, finding the expert showed debtor’s practice of immediate recognition of initial franchise fees as revenue violated GAAP and debtor was continuously insolvent; transfers are avoidable.

In Unusual ESOP Case, 5th Circuit Validates FMV Computation

5th Circuit upholds district court’s liability and remedy findings in ESOP case; lower court’s weighting and averaging of valuation results offered by parties’ experts to compute amount of overpayment “was founded in established valuation methodology.”

Perez v. Bruister (II)

5th Circuit upholds district court’s liability and remedy findings in ESOP case; lower court’s weighting and averaging of valuation results offered by parties’ experts to compute amount of overpayment “was founded in established valuation methodology.”

Subsequent Transaction Too Remote to Allow for Reliable Valuation

In gift tax dispute involving decades-old transaction by a media magnate, Tax Court upholds IRS’s deficiency ruling and credits agency expert’s valuation of transferred stock based on a similar arm’s-length transaction occurring near the valuation date.

Redstone v. Commissioner

In gift tax dispute involving decades-old transaction by a media magnate, Tax Court upholds IRS’s deficiency ruling and credits agency expert’s valuation of transferred stock based on a similar arm’s-length transaction occurring near the valuation date.

Tax Court Tacitly Approves of IRS Solvency Assessment

In transferee liability case, solvency experts use gamut of valuation methods to establish when subject became insolvent; Tax Court does not endorse any one approach but appears to give nod to IRS market-based solvency analysis.

Court Affirms Rightness of Expert’s ‘Marital Value’ Calculation

Court upholds expert’s idiosyncratic valuation approach based on ascertaining “marital value” of community’s grocery stores as opposed to stores’ “investment value”; since the stores were not sold, valuation properly captured their value to owner spouse.

In re Honer

Court upholds expert’s idiosyncratic valuation approach based on ascertaining “marital value” of community’s grocery stores as opposed to stores’ “investment value”; since the stores were not sold, valuation properly captured their value to owner spouse.

High Company-Specific Risk Adjustment Distorts Valuation

In a buyout case, the court finds that, in reselling company, defendants undervalued rollover equity interest by double counting risks specific to the company in order to avoid triggering windfall provision in prior sales agreement favorable to plaintiff.

Kardash v. Commissioner (I)

In transferee liability case, solvency experts use gamut of valuation methods to establish when subject became insolvent; Tax Court does not endorse any one approach but appears to give nod to IRS market-based solvency analysis.

Expert’s Solid DCF and Industry Research Sway Court

Court discredits respondent expert’s capitalization of earnings calculation and market-based analysis, noting “severe deficiencies” and instead adopts petitioner expert’s valuation but applies DLOM to entire equity value, not just goodwill.

Charron v. Sallyport Global Holdings, Inc.

In a buyout case, the court finds that, in reselling company, defendants undervalued rollover equity interest by double counting risks specific to the company in order to avoid triggering windfall provision in prior sales agreement favorable to plaintiff.

Wright v. Irish (Hudson Valley Clean Energy, Inc.)

Court discredits respondent expert’s capitalization of earnings calculation and market-based analysis, noting “severe deficiencies” and instead adopts petitioner expert’s valuation but applies DLOM to entire equity value, not just goodwill.

Valuation Upheld Against Party That Fails to Use Independent Valuation Sources

Verizon Inc. had offered to buy MCHC’s majority holder, Palmer Wireless Holdings (Palmer), if Verizon’s initial public offering was successful and if Palmer could acquire 100% of the stock in all of the companies it held.

Montgomery Cellular Holding Co., Inc. v. Dobler

Verizon Inc. had offered to buy MCHC’s majority holder, Palmer Wireless Holdings (Palmer), if Verizon’s initial public offering was successful and if Palmer could acquire 100% of the stock in all of the companies it held.

Tax Court Determines That Value Was 'Somewhere in the Middle' of Expert Opinions

The taxpayers' expert, Gregory Heebink, used the discounted cash flow (DCF) method and the guideline public company method.

Hess v. Commissioner

Taxpayers gave 10 shares of HII common stock (a 10% stockholder interest) to an irrevocable trust established for their daughter. Issue was the fair market value of the stock for gift tax p ...

Tax Court Chooses Market Approach Over Asset Approach

The issue in this consolidated case involving the Caracci family was whether the value of the Sta-Home Health Agency Inc. (SHHA) and related entities transferred into S corporations exceeded the consideration paid.

Caracci v. Commissioner (I)

The issue was whether the value of the Sta-Home Health Agency, Inc. (SHHA) and related entities transferred into S corporations exceeded the consideration paid.

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