Newswise — Small businesses and nonprofits can receive pro bono control risk assessments from Justice for Fraud Victims (JFV) at the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business.

“A risk assessment can reveal control weaknesses in an organization and will make pragmatic suggestions as to how to solve those,” says Smith Accounting Lecturer and JFV Director Samuel Handwerger

Handwerger adds, “It is normal for small businesses and nonprofits to have inherent control weaknesses because of their size. This is why they are most vulnerable. We can help find and institute easy mitigating controls without increasing the organization's budget.” 

The work will be CPA-supervised, including under Handwerger, a past recipient of the Maryland Governor’s Volunteer of the Year Award for financial and management advisement to nonprofit organizations. 

JFV launched in 2023 as a collaboration of UMD Smith and the Prince George’s County Financial Crimes Unit and State’s Attorney’s Office. The program engages students in investigating financial fraud – including against members of vulnerable populations — with local law enforcement officers.

The program further involves forensic accounting in investigating real-life cases of fraud and analyzing evidence from grand jury-subpoenaed documents. The students also receive assistance from UMD faculty and oversight of certified fraud examiners, as well as other professionals.

Organizations can arrange for an assessment and get more information by email at [email protected].

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