I am thinking of a New Yorker magazine cartoon from some years ago. It featured an elderly man being served something by the butler. He is looking at it on his plate with a bit of disgust. The caption was, “I say it’s spinach and I say, ‘To hell with it.’”
I am feeling that way about the new year and trying to make some resolutions.
Should I start lying about the quality of the items I see on a regular basis when I am appraising – just to keep the client happy?
Should I underestimate valuations so that the estate pays less to the IRS?
Should I charge someone for an appraisal when all they need is a walk-through valuation?
Should I not make clients sign a disclaimer on the above when I am only providing a verbal estimate of value?
Should I take a case where the client wants me to low-ball the valuations so that other heirs are not cognizant of the value of the estate?
Should I put any credence in the comments of one heir over that of another?
Should I work with moving companies who don’t want to pay me for the work I do?
Should I work for the relocated individuals who want me to write a report that gives them a value on items that clearly were damaged before the move?
Should I believe family history when there is no clear, written history of provenance?