Williams Adley, CA Blog

Accountant Client eNewsletter - January 2017


View the January 2017 issue of Accountant Client eNewsletter:


We have moved!


We are happy to announce Williams, Adley moved its corporate headquarters to the Airport Corporate Centre Building located at 7677 Oakport Street in Oakland. We are nestled on the 10th floor in suite 1000. The location has easy access to I-880 and close in proximity to the Oakland Airport and Oakland Coliseum. There is a free Bart shuttle service from the Coliseum Bart station to the building and back. Our telephone number and fax number have remained the same. The building is Energy Star Certified and sustainable offering programs for recycling and composting.

Commitment to our Community

Williams Adley has been head-quartered in Oakland its entire 35 year history. We are proud to be part of the Oakland Business Community and are glad to see the surge in economic activity in Oakland in recent years. We believe that Oakland represents the best in diversity and inclusion and is a vital economic center with a bright future.
If you have not been to our offices we encourage you to pay us a visit.

We look forward to seeing and serving you at our new improved office surroundings! If you have any questions regarding our location, please feel free to contact us.

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Accountant Client eNewsletter - December 2016


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Accountant Client eNewsletter - November 2016


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Accountant Client eNewsletter - October 2016


View the October 2016 issue of Accountant Client eNewsletter:

Accountant Client eNewsletter - September 2016


View the September 2016 issue of Accountant Client eNewsletter:

Accountant Client eNewsletter - August 2016

View the August 2016 issue of Accountant Client eNewsletter:

Accountant Client eNewsletter - July 2016

View the July 2016 issue of Accountant Client eNewsletter: 



Accountant Client eNewsletter - June 2016

View the June 2016 issue of Accountant Client eNewsletter: 



Accountant Client eNewsletter - May 2016

View the May 2016 issue of Accountant Client eNewsletter: 

2012 Tax Update Presentation

2012 Small Business Tax Update "Unchartered Waters Ahead"

Robert Griffin, Partner at Williams Adley cohosted a seminar on 2012 small business tax updates.  Various small business for the local area joined in the seminar.  Please feel free to download and view the presentation below.


Williams Adley 2012 Small Business Tax Update Presentation - Download

Does the 1099 Really Matter?

by Robert Griffin, CPA and Partner at Williams Adley


1099s are playing an ever increasing role in the compliance policies of both the Internal Revenue Service and Franchise Tax Board. Given a tough economy and declines in tax revenues, both agencies are scrutinizing issuers of 1099's more closely.

Both the IRS and FTB maintain programs to step up enforcement against employers who misclassify employees as independent contractors. The IRS's Voluntary Classification Settlement Program is a new program that allows taxpayers to reclassify workers on a go forward basis while providing partial relief on any old tax amounts due. Effective January 1, 2012, California Senate Bill 459 (SB 459) significantly increases the penalties that can be assessed against employers who willfully misclassify as independent contractors individuals who should be treated as employees.

Before you can determine how to treat the payments that you make, you must determine the business relationship between you and the person performing the service. The individual performing the service may be:

  • an independent contractor
  • an employee
  • a statutory employee
  • a statutory non-employee

Several tests are used to evaluate and properly classify a worker as an employee or contractor. In summary, three key questions to ask include:

  1. Does the company have the right to control how the worker performs his or her duties, and does the company have the right to control what those duties are?
  2. Are the business aspects of the worker controlled by the company? Are tools, equipment and supplies provided? Are expenses reimbursed?
  3. Are written contracts utilized, or are employee type benefits provided?

If you have questions as either a payer or payee, you can complete Form SS-8 and submit it to the IRS for a determination. Beware -- as anyone who has ever called the IRS or FTB knows, it takes a while to get an answer. In this case, it could take up to six months.

If you misclassify an employee as an independent contractor and you have no reasonable basis for doing so, you may be held liable for employment taxes as well as penalties and interest. Misclassified workers can file Social Security Form 8919 - Uncollected Social Security and Medicare Taxes on Wages to report the employee's share of Social Security and Medicare taxes due.

We strongly encourage you to consult with legal counsel or an accountant experienced in employment practice matters to review your independent contractor relationships, to determine the appropriateness of these classifications, and to assist you if re-classifications are required to mitigate potential legal exposures.

In the meantime, please call our office at (510) 893-8114 should you have any questions or would like to receive more information. You can also visit our website, ca.williamsadley.com.



Williams Adley in the Metro News

Williams Adley is very excited about sharing our successes.  As loyal Oakland Chamber of Commerce members we were delighted to see Audrey Elbert and Kenneth Yu in the local Metro News.

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New Partnership and Promotion Announcement

Williams, Adley & Company-CA, LLP (Williams Adley)
Announces New Partnership & Promotion

Oakland, CA - February 13, 2012


Audrey Elbert_hi-res_1995Audrey Elbert, J.D., CPA, has been admitted as a Partner. She joined Williams Adley in 1992, and possesses a wealth of knowledge and experience in audit and assurance services for government, non-profit, and other business entities. In her new role as a Partner, Audrey will manage engagements, coordinate staff development and peer reviews, as well as focus on the most important aspect of our business, client service. Audrey holds a bachelor's degree in Accounting from Florida A&M University, along with a law degree from Boalt Hall School of Law, University of California-Berkeley.

Audrey's Focus for 2012:  Although Audrey is still working on "finishing out 2011" and "wrapping her head around" her new role as junior partner, she is excited at the opportunity to help solidify the firm's branding as a "firm of choice". As partner, Audrey plans to "personally place more emphasis on the technical strengths of the employees and continue to enhance our team". Williams Adley is known for its hands-on support and client care. Audrey will work diligently in continuing to provide this high level of service to clients, as well as focus her attention outside of the office with clients to better understand their needs.

Kenneth hi-2012Kenneth Yu, CPA, has been promoted to Audit Manager. Having joined Williams Adley in 2004, Kenneth has proven knowledge in audit and assurance, as well as consulting from both a strategic and tactical level. Kenneth's experience includes government, construction, non-profit, as well as consulting with major corporations throughout the U.S. He holds a bachelor's degree in Managerial Economics from University of California-Davis.

Kenneth's Focus for 2012: Kenneth is looking forward to playing an integral role in Williams Adley's future engagements. Since planning, increasing efficiency and technical knowledge are Kenneth's strengths; he "plans on mentoring accountants and supervisors, as well as continuing to bring modern technologies to Williams Adley's projects to better serve clients."

Williams Adley – a Leading CPA Firm Since 1982
We realize the importance of expert accounting services in today's economic climate. As Certified Public Accountants in an increasingly complex world, we continually focus our efforts and offer the highest level of services to our clients in meeting their challenges. With our combined experience, education, and industry participation, we are able to offer clients broad-based, local expertise specific to their industry needs (Government, Non-Profit, Construction, General Business and Real Estate). Our team provides to our clients a diverse array of auditing, accounting, management consulting, financial services, litigation support, and tax services.

Williams Adley is rapidly approaching 30 years in business, and everyone at the firm is extremely proud and honored to achieve such a milestone in service and excellence! For more information about the firm's services, please contact our office at (510) 893-8114, email mbutler@wacllp.com or visit our website at: www.ca.williamsadley.com.

Independent Contractors - Senate Bill 459

Sentate Bill 459 News Regarding Independent Contractors:

Effective January 1, 2012, California has a new law -- Senate Bill 459 (SB 459), which significantly increases the penalties that can be assessed against employers who willfully misclassify as independent contractors individuals who should be treated as employees. If your company utilizes independent contractors, it is extremely important that you take the time now to understand the impact of this new law on your operation and to take the necessary steps to ensure appropriate compliance with this law. The highlights of the law are summarized below for your reference, although they are not meant to be all-inclusive.

SB 459 makes it unlawful for any person or employer to engage in "willful misclassification" of an individual as an independent contractor. The law also prohibits charging individuals who have been misclassified as independent contractors a fee or making deductions (e.g., for space rental, goods, equipment maintenance) from compensation if those acts would have violated the law had the individuals not been misclassified.

This new law comes on the tail of the IRS's recent announcement regarding its new settlement initiative, the Voluntary Classification Settlement Program (VCSP), allowing employers to: 1) come forward if they are not under audit, 2) reclassify independent contractors as employees, and 3) pay a significantly reduced employment tax.

Who has authority to assess compliance and penalties?

SB 459 authorizes the Labor and Workforce Development Agency, specifically the Labor Commissioner or a court, to assess specified civil penalties on persons or employers violating the law. SB 459 also requires the agency to take other specified disciplinary actions against these individuals.

What happens if I am found to have violated the law?

The law requires employers who are found to have engaged in a misclassification "to display prominently" for one year on their websites a notice to employees and the general public announcing, among other things, that the employer "has committed a serious violation of law by engaging in willful misclassification of employees." The notice must be signed by a corporate officer.

What are the fines and penalties?

Violation of the new statute carries exposure for a civil penalty of between $5,000 and $15,000 for each violation. If the employer is found to have engaged "in a pattern or practice of violations," the civil penalty is increased to $10,000 and $25,000 per violation. The law does not define the term "pattern or practice."

Where should I go for assistance and additional information if I have independent contractors?

We strongly encourage you to consult with legal counsel experienced in employment practice matters to review your independent contractor relationships, to determine the appropriateness of these classifications, and to assist you if re-classifications may be required to mitigate potential legal exposures to your business.

In the meantime, please call our Williams Adley office at (510) 893-8114 should you have any questions or would like to receive more information.



Volunteer Day at Food Bank

WA Volunteer DayTo support our community outreach goals, employees of Williams Adley volunteered last year at the Alameda County Food Bank, and we're looking forward to serving again this year. We spent the day shucking corn, peeling potatoes, and loading food into bins which were ready to be transported to soup kitchens, child care facilities, senior citizen homes and many other community based organizations which provide food to low income or homeless families.



Learn More About the Alameda County Food Bank

The Alameda County Food Bank is an excellent organization, and they are continually seeking volunteers to help package and distribute food to less fortunate individuals in our community. Below is a photo of Williams Adley's "Volunteer Day" at the food bank.


Williams Adley Summer Luncheon


As Williams Adley is nearing its 30th Anniversary we reflect on our accomplishments, the legacy that Tom Williams left behind and the most important part of Williams Adley: Our Team.

Without our team of Managers, CPA's, Accountants and Administrators we could not evolve and bring to our clients competent service, technical knowledge, reliable communication and innovative project implementation.

On Friday – August 26th the Williams Adley Team participated in our annual Special Summer Outing Luncheon at Yang Sing Restaurant in San Francisco. This was a great event in which staff, managers, & partners had an opportunity to spend quality time & bond with each other outside of the office. Some team members took the ferryboat & enjoyed the beautiful views, while others enjoyed a shorter BART ride to the City. The photos below represent a few moments that were captured from the event. ENJOY!

Sacramento Small Business Award

TomSwansonDuring the California Small Business Day reception this past June in Sacramento, Assembly member Sandré R. Swanson (D-Alameda) honored local businessman Tom W. Williams, Jr. with the small business award for his significant leadership as Chief Executive Officer and founder of the accounting firm Williams Adley.

Click here to read the entire story!