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What is my interest in this business estimated to be worth? What is the market value of my business to potential purchasers?

Determining the value of someone’s interest in a closely held business can be important for tax, business, and personal reasons. But establishing value is not always easy because there is rarely an established market for closely-held business interests. That’s why an objective, professionally-prepared business valuation is essential.

Select a qualified business valuation professional.

Carbis Walker LLP’s business valuation consultants use a comprehensive approach to valuing business interests. We perform an in-depth analysis using relevant market data and apply state-of-the-art valuation techniques to ensure an accurate and defensible business valuation report. In addition, we monitor statutory authority, administrative rulings, and judicial precedent to ensure the valuation is in compliance with legal and professional standards.

Carbis Walker professionals are recognized leaders in the valuation industry and are active in the American Society of Appraisers, the Institute of Business Appraisers, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, and the Association for Investment Management and Research. Our involvement in these professional organizations and participation in continuing professional education keep us abreast of the latest developments in the increasingly sophisticated field of business valuation.

Business valuations serve many needs.

Carbis Walker performs independent valuations for many business reasons, including:

Estate and Gift Taxes.

Valuations of closely held business interests are beneficial for estate planning, gifting, estate settlement, and Internal Revenue Service reporting of estate or gift transactions. A properly prepared valuation can help avoid: 1) an IRS challenge that could overturn an estate plan; 2) exposing the estate to under valuation penalties; and 3) disputes among heirs.

Income Tax Purposes.

Certain transactions may require determining the fair market value of stock in a closely held business to accurately assess tax liability, which can help avoid overpayment or underpayment of taxes. Tax-related valuations are prepared for a variety of purposes, such as compensation in the form of stock or options, charitable contributions, S corporation elections, and purchase price allocations.

Business Acquisition, Sale, or Merger.

In selling situations, a valuation may help set realistic price expectations. If someone is planning to buy a business, a valuation may protect him or her from paying more than the business is worth. Conversely, someone trying to sell a business interest will want to ensure a fair selling price.

FinancialStatement Purposes.

Due to the elimination of pooling accounting and changes for intangible asset amortization, properly allocating intangible assets after an acquisition is often a challenge.

SFAS 141 requires allocation of the purchase price among the assets acquired, including all tangible and intangible assets. Any intangible asset associated with contractual or legal rights, such as a trademark, patent, or copyright, must be recognized separately from goodwill. We can determine the fair value of these intangible assets for purposes of allocation.

SFAS 142 requires that goodwill and intangible assets without a defined life must be tested for impairment at least annually through a process that begins with an estimation of the fair value of the reporting unit. We can determine the fair value of the reporting unit for purposes of testing goodwill for impairment.

Value-Based Planning.

Our professionally prepared business valuation report can be an effective management tool to help business owners and managers with decisions that can ultimately impact shareholder value. Because our report clearly identifies factors impacting a business’s value, owners or managers can use the report to help analyze the possible impact of their decisions on future value and adjust business plans accordingly.

Litigation Support.

Attorneys rely on the opinion of our business valuation professionals, as well as their reports, to help substantiate claims and defend positions in situations such as business and marital dissolutions, lost profit cases, insurance claims, and more.

Determining the level of detail you need.

Carbis Walker business valuation consultants can provide the level of service you require, ranging from informal calculations to a comprehensive appraisal report. They’ll help you determine which of the following valuation services you need:

Appraisal Report.

This comprehensive, narrative report expresses an independent opinion on the value of a business interest. The report provides a logical progression that clearly communicates pertinent information, valuation methods, and conclusions. The result is a report that is easy to understand, with information that can be defended, if necessary.

Summary Letter Report.

If the report is for client use only, we can issue a Summary Letter Report that states material factors leading to the report’s conclusions. If a third party challenges the value conclusion, we can use additional work-file information to produce an appraisal report.


For a calculation engagement, which provides an approximate indication of value, we perform limited procedures agreed to in advance with our client. This type of engagement is appropriate when a client wants an estimate of business value, but does not require a formal opinion.

Expert Testimony.

In addition to preparing written valuation reports, our valuation professionals offer the experience and credentials to provide trial preparation assistance, expert testimony, and review of other expert reports.

For more information about our business valuation services, contact Charles M. Laverty, Jr., ASA, CBA, MAFF at 800.452.3003 (opt 1).

Chuck is an Accredited Senior Appraiser (ASA) and Certified Business Appraiser (CBA) with over six years of experience exclusively in the area of valuation services. He has directly managed, or been the preparer of, over 300 appraisals for entities including operating companies, professional practices, holding companies, and family limited partnerships.