A Guide to Forensic Accounting

Divorce can be a hugely difficult period for both parties involved. These difficult times can be made even harder when one party isn’t being as cooperative as the other.

Maybe one side is making unreasonable demands, or they aren’t playing ball when it comes to disclosing their assets and finances.

During a divorce, all avenues must be explored, especially when these complicated issues arise.

One thing you can do if the other party isn’t forthcoming about their finances during a divorce is to hire an independent expert. These experts are known as forensic accountants.

Forensic accountants have been called upon time and time again to come into divorce proceedings and help sort things out, especially for high-net-worth divorces.

In this blog, we will go over exactly what a forensic accountant is and how they operate when it comes to divorce.

What is forensic accounting in the UK?

Forensic accounting refers to the process of conducting a thorough investigation into the finances of a business or an individual.


How can a forensic accountant help in divorce?

Forensic accountants can have a role when it comes to divorce proceedings. They can represent one party or act as a joint expert for both parties.

Their job is to delve into the finances of a party (or both) and see if they have been transparent about their finances as a whole.

The division of finances and assets is a huge part of a divorce so a forensic accountant’s findings can influence how these are divided.

Why do you need a forensic accountant for divorce?

As discussed, a forensic accountant’s job is to see if parties are being transparent to their legal representatives and the Courts about their finances during a divorce.

Although this is a key part of their job, it isn’t the only reason why they may be called upon. They can also be used for other situations including:

  • Assist with complex financial proceedings.
  • Help when there are a lot of high-value assets involved.
  • When a co-owned company is involved.
forensic accounting

Do both parties need a forensic accountant?

It is not essential for both parties to have the assistance of a forensic accountant. If both parties have a civil and respectable arrangement, there may be no need for one at all.

Or they could both benefit by having such a person act as a single joint expert, which will be a more cooperative approach, especially if both parties have agreed on the financial split for their divorce.

If this is not the case and there is mistrust between the two involved parties, then they could choose to have their own forensic accountant.

Can a forensic accountant be used once the divorce is finalised?

You can still seek the assistance of a forensic accountant once the final assets have been distributed.

This could happen if one party is found to have been concealing information about finances or assets they have.

It is for this very reason that it is important to seek help during divorce if possible.

How much does a forensic accountant cost in the UK?

When you hire the help of a forensic accountant, there is a wide scope in terms of how much they will cost.

A forensic accountant for divorce in the UK costs more from a larger, more reputable firm. They could cost in the region of £500 per hour.

If it is a forensic accountant from a lesser-known firm it may be around £100 per hour.

Brown Turner Ross – Divorce specialists

So there you have it, a guide into forensic and investigative accounting and how it relates to those going through divorce proceedings.

Hiring a forensic accountant to help with your divorce settlement can be tricky, as there is a lot to consider. We can help make this process smoother for you with the help of our experienced team.

If you’re going through a divorce at the moment and need the help of a team that knows how to handle these sensitive situations, please contact us today.

Southport Solicitors

Tel: 0170-454 2002

Fax: 0170-454 3144

11 St George's Place

Lord Street



Liverpool Solicitors

Tel: 0151-236 2233

Fax: 0170-454 3144

The Cotton Exchange Building

Bixteth Street


L3 9LQ