Very often criminal cases need the expertise of a forensic accountant to assist. They analyse and present financial information in a way that a court can readily understand. Frequently their task is to assist the defence lawyers to respond to the allegations being made.The prosecution often brings a case in a fraud matter such as a tax fraud or a confiscation of assets using the Proceeds of Crime Act legislation following another conviction that involves a large amount of financial data. It is usual for the case summary, or statement of information as it may be called in a confiscation, to be written and presented by persons such as an accredited financial investigator. These are often employed as police officers and may receive training in a number of areas including investigating, interviewing and evidence handling. Some will receive rudimentary accounting instruction but most will not. It is very rare for the prosecution to employ expert accountants to present financial data owing to budgetary constraints. However, this results in the need for the criminal defence to examine the allegations in very great detail as, more often than not, they will include errors and inappropriate conclusions.In the case of a fraud, it will usually be clear that there is a case to answer. The police will investigate financial losses and in many cases be able to present a modus for the crime that can be readily understood. However, such is the partisan nature of the approach adopted by the regulatory authorities that they will often draw rather zealous or inappropriate conclusions from their evidence.
The forensic accountant must consider all aspects of the case and present the information in an independent and unbiased way. Sometimes this can result in the defendant being shown in a more adverse light, but mostly will lead to a tempering of the prosecution's case.On the other hand the treatment of a confiscation by the authorities can result in the presentation of wholly unreasonable demands for a person to lose all their wealth and suffer lengthy additional prison terms for committing even modest crimes for which they have already received a punishment. The confiscation regime has often been called draconian and presents a much stronger need for a capable forensic accountant to become involved.The Proceeds of Crime Act 2002 ensured that criminals involved in not only money laundering and drug dealing were targeted, but also any criminal who could be deemed to have enjoyed a criminal lifestyle. Unfortunately, the criterion for a criminal lifestyle are very easily met!The prosecution continue to use accredited financial investigators to estimate the extent of a person's criminal lifestyle, without the benefit of having to prove matters to within "reasonable doubt" as is usual for criminal matters.
What is more, the legislation allows sweeping assumptions to be made, with the onus on the defendant to prove otherwise. This is why the defence is tasked with a difficult job and hence the need for the assistance of forensic accountants.An expert may therefore be used to clarify the framework of a complex fraud, presenting the evidence in an understandable fashion. It can point to flaws in the allegations being made but can equally present a poorer picture for the defendant. More often than not, in a confiscation matter the expert accountant will reduce the extent that the criminal benefit has been estimated as by the prosecution, pointing out flaws in the approach and mistakes in the calculations.In both frauds and confiscations there is a strong argument for an increased use of expert forensic accountants. This would mean increased funding for the police and prosecution authorities, but might mean a corresponding reduction in the amount of work that the defence is tasked with, which at the end of the day is also funded from public money.
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Every company knows the rule that an employer must pay non-exempt workers time and a half for hours worked over forty in a workweek. But employers still have difficulty in defining terms such as non-exempt or hours worked. Employers also frequently make mistakes in calculating the overtime owed sometimes resulting in the employer paying too much but often resulting in the employer not paying enough. The Department of Labor has been focused on employers violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act. And, lawsuits have significantly increased.federal employment laws Employers are still finding it difficult to calculate whether they owe overtime and how to pay overtime correctly.This webinar will assist you in identifying which employees are entitled to overtime, how to calculate hours worked and will address methods of compensating for overtime worked straight workweek methods, fluctuating workweek methods, and even Belo contracts.
Areas Covered in the Seminar:- What does the FLSA require? Who is exempt from its coverage?- What is a workweek for purposes of overtime calculation? Are there any exceptions?- What are hours worked? What does it mean to suffer or permit someone to work?- Do you have to pay for unauthorized overtime?- How can you decrease your overtime liability and still be legal?- What does it mean to pay someone a salary? Why cant you just pay a straight salary to cover overtime hours?Who Will Benefit:All companies both private and governmental will benefit from this webinar. Every company with employees will find at some point that it will have a problem that arises from an employees use of social networking sites.- HR Managers- Supervisors- Labor department- federal fair labor standards act- ManagementInstructor Profile:Susan Fahey Desmond, has been representing management in all areas of labor and employment law since her graduation from the University Of Tennessee School Of Law since 1985. She is listed in Best Lawyers in America for Labor and federal employment laws and has been named by Chambers USA as one of Americas leading business lawyers in Labor and Employment Law. She is also listed in Mid-South Super Lawyers.
Susan Fahey Desmond is a shareholder in the Firm's Labor and Employment Practice Group and works from the firms Gulf Coast office. She is a graduate of the University of Mississippi (B.A., 1982) and the University Of Tennessee School Of Law (J.D., 1985). Ms. Desmond is a member of the Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, Florida and Colorado Bar Associations. She is also a member of the Federal and American (member, Labor and Employment Law Section; past chair, Labor Committee; Executive Council Coordinator, Young Lawyers Section; member, Torts and Insurance Practice Section; member, Emerging Issues Committee) Bar Associations.federal fair labor standards act Ms. Desmond has served as a director for both The Mississippi Bar Young Lawyers Division and the Jackson Young Lawyers Association.