It’s important to schedule internal audits. Fraud doesn’t simply take a vacation during crises, such as the COVID-19 pandemic. If your not-for-profit’s internal controls aren’t effective, crooked individuals can find ways to exploit them and steal from your organization — even if they’re working remotely. Other threats, such as financial shortfalls, might also loom.

a computer screen showing a graph with red and green lines; image used for blog post about not-for-profit internal audits for risk mitigation

Comprehensive independent audits help assure stakeholders that your not-for-profit is ready for anything that might come its way — including opportunities.


Continue Reading How Internal Audits Can Serve as Risk Mitigation

IRS audit rates are historically low, according to the latest data, but that’s little consolation if your return is among those selected to be examined. But with proper preparation and planning, you should fare well.

In fiscal year 2019, the IRS audited approximately 0.4% of individuals. Businesses, large corporations and high-income individuals are more likely to be audited but, overall, all types of audits are being conducted less frequently than they were a decade ago.

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There’s no 100% guarantee that you won’t be picked for an audit, because some tax returns are chosen randomly. However, the best way to survive an IRS audit is to prepare for one in advance. On an ongoing basis you should systematically maintain documentation — invoices, bills, cancelled checks, receipts, or other proof — for all items to be reported on your tax returns. Keep all your records in one place. And it helps to know what might catch the attention of the IRS.


Continue Reading Getting Ready for an IRS Audit in Advance

Jen: This is the PKF Texas Entrepreneur’s Playbook. I’m Jen Lemanski, and I’m back once again with Carlos Gomez, an Audit Manager and one of the faces of the PKF Texas Contract Compliance Services team. Carlos, welcome back the Playbook.

Carlos: Thanks, Jen.

Jen: So, Carlos, you and I have talked off video about licensing and royalty audits. Are they the same thing?

Carlos: They’re just a term that’s synonymous with licensing. Royalties are just the funds that you receive from your contract agreement, whether it be a licensed franchise or just a vender.

Jen: So, are these very commonplace in the contract compliance services world?

Carlos: They are. Royalties is basically your revenue, as rather being a licensor; that’s where you get your money from. It’s your third party that’s collecting their share and then paying forward your share.

Jen: Is there a chance of misreporting going on during a license agreement?


Continue Reading Red Flags in Licensing and Royalty Audits

Jen: This is the PKF Texas Entrepreneur’s Playbook. I’m Jen Lemanski, and I’m back again with Carlos Gomez, an audit manager and one of the faces of the PKF Texas Contract Compliance Services team. Carlos, will come back to the Playbook.

Carlos: Thanks, Jen.

Jen: Carlos, in previous editions we’ve talked about vendor management audits. What are those and how do those help a company in this type of situation?

Carlos: Typically, our clients benefit from having some visibility into their vendors with a vendor audit. It will help you identify any key issues and maybe recover some expenses that you happened to lose that weren’t in line with the agreement.

Jen: So, how does a vendor audit actually work?


Continue Reading What to Know About a Vendor Audit

A financial audit conducted by outside experts is among the most effective tools for revealing risks in not-for-profits. They help assure donors and other stakeholders about your stability — so long as you respond to the results appropriately.

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In fact, failing to act on issues identified in an audit could threaten your organization’s long-term viability.


Continue Reading After Your Not-for-Profit’s Financial Audit…

Jen: This is the PKF Texas Entrepreneur’s Playbook. I’m Jen Lemanski, and I’m back again with Carlos Gomez, an audit manager and one of the faces of the PKF Texas Contract Compliance Services team. Carlos, welcome back to The Playbook.

Carlos: Thanks for having me again.

Jen: On our last video, you mentioned about franchise compliance, and that’s a type of audit that we do that we provide as part of our contract compliance services. What is a franchise compliance audit?

Carlos: Typically, the way a franchise is set up, they license a territory, certain rights; whether it be a restaurant, some type of service industry, from a franchisor who developed a plan, put together a program, how to really build a business. And so, when they license that right to get a franchise in a certain location, the franchisors just want to make sure they’re getting their—not only correct revenue, but that they’re obeying the terms of the agreement; whether that be marketing, advertising and treating the brand with respect.

Jen: Why should somebody be concerned if a franchisee is in compliance with their contract?


Continue Reading Franchise Compliance – A Closer Look

Jen: This is the PKF Texas Entrepreneur’s Playbook. I’m Jen Lemanski, and I’m here today with Carlos Gomez, an Audit Manager and one of the faces of the PKF Texas Contract Compliance services team. Carlos, welcome to the Playbook.

Carlos: Thank you. Thank you for having me.

Jen: So, what are contract compliance services?

Carlos: Contract compliance services is a mixture of different types of audit that we can do for a third-party in order to make sure you’re getting paid the right amount of money that you’re due, whether it be a license agreement or franchise or a vendor that you want to review.

Jen: So, who would need these types of services?


Continue Reading What are Contract Compliance Services?

After careful planning and collaboration with the Employee Benefit Plan Audit and Consulting niche team, PKF Texas hosted its first virtual Zoom webinar during the COVID-19 pandemic, “Retirement Plans: Navigating Recent Law Changes & Using Them to Your Advantage,” on June 25, 2020.

promotional image of Kristin Ryan, Carl Gillette and Brian Giovannini for a Zoom webinar about employee benefit plans during COVID-19 pandemic

The webinar featured Kristin Ryan, CPA, PKF Texas; Carl Gillette, Aon; and Brian Giovannini, Haynes and Boone, LLP, where they discussed:

  • Key provisions of the CARES Act, SECURE Act and other regulatory updates
  • Retirement plans design considerations and best practices
  • Implementation and potential roadblocks


Continue Reading Recap: Retirement Plans: Navigating Recent Law Changes Zoom Webinar

Many taxpayers don’t make the grade when it comes to recordkeeping. If you operate a small business, or you’re starting a new one, you probably know you need to keep records of your income and expenses. In particular, you should carefully record your expenses in order to claim the full amount of the tax deductions to which you’re entitled. And you want to make sure you can defend the amounts reported on your tax returns if you’re ever audited by the IRS or state tax agencies.

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Certain types of expenses, such as automobile, travel, meals and office-at-home expenses, require special attention because they’re subject to special recordkeeping requirements or limitations on deductibility.

It’s interesting to note that there’s not one way to keep business records. In its publication “Starting a Business and Keeping Records,” the IRS states: “Except in a few cases, the law does not require any specific kind of records. You can choose any recordkeeping system suited to your business that clearly shows your income and expenses.”

Here are three court cases to illustrate some of the issues.


Continue Reading Make Sure You Have Good Recordkeeping