Author Archive

Nienow & Tierney, LLP is Hiring!

January 10, 2014


Nienow & Tierney, LLP is seeking to hire a highly motivated staff or senior accountant to perform tax, financial and consulting engagements.  This is a unique opportunity for an individual who shares our vision and is seeking to build a career in a positive, high quality local CPA firm.


The staff or senior accountant will work closely with partners, managers and clients, performing corporation, partnership and individual income tax returns, planning and consulting, and compilation or review financial statement engagements.  The accountant will be required to work independently and complete multiple projects simultaneously within budget.


  • BA/BS degree in Accounting
  • CPA license or candidate a plus
  • Solid interpersonal/communication skills
  • Ability to handle multiple priorities and meet project deadlines
  • Strong computer skills
  • Proficient in Microsoft Word and Excel
  • Knowledge of Lacerte and trial balance programs preferred
  • 2-5 years of tax experience preferred


Nienow & Tierney, LLP is a local firm providing tax, financial accounting and management advisory services to closely held businesses and individuals in a variety of industries, including real estate, construction, manufacturing and professional service firms.  We strive to provide the highest level of technical assistance by combining our experience, education and resources, with the highest levels of integrity and personal service.  Further information about Nienow & Tierney, LLP is available at our website,

We offer an enjoyable, professional, positive work environment with a competitive salary and benefits package including a 401(k) plan with employer contributions, medical insurance, and continuing education.

Please email cover letter and resume to


The Basics of SMLLCs

January 6, 2014

By Joanna Nguyen

Single member limited liability companies (SMLLCs), like all LLCs, are designed to protect against personal liability.  An SMLLC is treated as a “disregarded entity” for federal income tax purposes, unless it formally elects to be treated as a corporation.  Thus, its earnings and losses will be reported on an individual member’s personal return on Schedule C as if it were a sole proprietorship.  In other words, an SMLLC will be considered a sole proprietorship for federal tax purposes, but will not lose other benefits associated with being a corporate entity.  Therefore, the SMLLC does not need to file any tax forms for federal purposes.

In most states, an SMLLC is treated as a “disregarded entity” for tax purposes.  For California income tax purposes, payment of the annual tax and LLC fee is required and therefore, a California SMLLC should file Form 568 with Page 1, Page 2, and the LLC Income Worksheet.  The LLC fee is applicable if total California annual income (gross receipts and not net income) is $250,000 or greater.  The fee ranges from $900 to $11,790.

Although an SMLLC protects against personal liability, it will not protect against a claim based on negligence, professional malpractice, or other personal wrongdoing that the owner commits related to the business.  Therefore, if a sole proprietor is able to acquire liability insurance, other types of business formations can be considered.

For more information about SMLLCs, please contact our office at (714) 836-8300.

Standard Mileage Rates go Down in 2014

December 9, 2013

Via Journal of Accountancy

Optional standard mileage rates for use of a vehicle will go down by one-half cent per mile for 2014, the IRS announced on Friday (Notice 2013-80). Taxpayers can use the optional standard mileage rates to calculate the deductible costs of operating an automobile.

For business use of a car, van, pickup truck, or panel truck, the 2014 rate will be 56 cents per mile. Driving for medical or moving purposes may be deducted at 23.5 cents per mile. Both rates are one-half cent lower than for 2013.

The rate for service to a charitable organization is unchanged, set by statute (Sec. 170(i)) at 14 cents a mile.

The portion of the business standard mileage rate that is treated as depreciation will be 22 cents per mile for 2014, down one cent from the 23 cent rate in effect in 2012 and 2013.

For purposes of computing the allowance under a fixed and variable rate (FAVR) plan, the maximum standard automobile cost for 2014 is $28,200 for automobiles (not including trucks and vans) or $30,400 for trucks and vans, increases of $100 and $500, respectively, from 2013. Under a FAVR plan, a standard amount is deemed substantiated for an employer’s reimbursement to employees for expenses they incur in driving their vehicle in performing services as an employee for the employer.

Association for Accounting Administration

November 20, 2013

Last week, the SoCal Chapter of the Association for Accounting Administration held an educational event for firm administrators, partners and COOs on “Building a Foundation for Success”.  The speaker, Rita Keller, is a nationally known CPA firm management consultant, speaker and author.  Our office manager, Katy Allen, and partners Paul Nienow and Stephen Tierney attended the event and gleaned from Rita’s knowledge and experience to continue building our firm so that we can provide our clients with the highest level of professional service.


Katy Allen is also on the board of the SoCal Chapter of the Association for Accounting Administration (AAA) and meets regularly with other accounting firm administrators in Southern California to share ideas about how to run accounting firms most effectively.  Feel free to learn more about AAA here:

Deadline Approaching for 100% Qualified Small Business Stock Gain Exclusion

November 7, 2013

Via Journal of Accountancy

Taxpayers have a short window in which to act if they want to take advantage of the Sec. 1202 provision that allows exclusion of 100% of the gain realized on the sale or exchange of qualified small business stock (QSBS). Unless the law is amended, for QSBS acquired after Dec. 31, 2013, the Sec. 1202 exclusion percentage will fall to 50%, and an alternative minimum tax (AMT) preference will further erode the exclusion’s advantages.

Currently, Sec. 1202 allows exclusion of 100% of the gain realized on the sale or exchange of QSBS for stock that is acquired after Sept. 27, 2010, and before Jan. 1, 2014, and held for more than five years. The exclusion applies to non-corporate taxpayers within certain tax-year limits.

In addition, the Sec. 57(a)(7) AMT preference for a portion of the gain excluded under Sec. 1202 does not apply to QSBS purchased within this period (Sec. 1202(a)(4)). Because the deadline for acquiring stock that will qualify for the more favorable treatment is rapidly approaching, investors should plan to complete any purchases of stock that could qualify as QSBS before the end of the year. 

If you have any questions regarding this article or any other matter, please contact our office at (714) 836-8300.

Governor Signs Cutler Bills

October 7, 2013

Via Spidell Publishing

On October 4, 2013, Governor Brown signed both AB 1412 and SB 209. Because the Governor signed AB 1412 last, it will become operative.

This means that for taxable years 2008 through 2012, taxpayers may exclude 50% of the gain on the sale of small business stock.

The bill not only reinstates the exclusion on the gain of small business stock deemed unconstitutional in Cutler, but it also generally allows taxpayers who claimed the small business exclusion on the federal return to also claim an exclusion on the California return for all open years. This is because AB 1412 removes the 80% payroll and property in California requirements.

Among other things, the bill allows taxpayers 180 days from the date of enactment to file a claim for refund for the 2008 year.

IRS Announces Cutback in Operations

October 2, 2013

Via Spidell Publishing, Inc.

The IRS announced today that “due to the current lapse in appropriations, IRS operations are limited.”

The key points of their announcement are:

  • They are unable to issue refunds;
  • Taxpayers must continue to file returns and make payments and deposits on a timely basis;
  • There is no live telephone service and walk-in taxpayer assistance centers are closed;
  • Audits, Appeals, and Taxpayer Advocate Services are “assumed” cancelled. “IRS personnel will reschedule those meetings at a later date;”
  • Automated notices will continue to be mailed, but the IRS will not be working any paper correspondence;
  • Automated applications on the regular (800) 829-1040 phone line will remain open; and
  • The IRS website will remain available, although some interactive features may not be available.

More information is available at:

Welcome Tracy Pohlen!

September 26, 2013

Please join us in welcoming the newest member of our team, Tracy Pohlen, CPA.  Tracy graduated from Biola University in 2007 with a Bachelors in Business Administration with an emphasis in Accounting and received her CPA license in 2013.  Tracy has worked in the accounting industry for over six years and has experience preparing tax returns for individuals, partnerships, corporations, estates and nonprofit organizations.  Tracy is starting at our firm as a senior accountant and many of you will have the pleasure of working with her in the near future.  We are excited to have such a valuable member join our team!

Welcome, Tracy!

No California Principle Residence COD Exclusion for 2013

September 18, 2013

Via Spidell Publishing

The California Legislature did not extend the COD exclusion for canceled qualified principal residence debt when SB 416 was defeated.  This means that a homeowner who loses a home to foreclosure in 2013 may not use the principal residence exclusion to exclude COD income on his or her California return.

An individual who has COD income in this situation should:

  • See if the insolvency exclusion will exclude income; or
  • Plan for a California tax liability in 2013.

Federal law extended the exclusion through 2013.

Client Spotlight: Yates & Yates, LLP

August 20, 2013


In this issue of our Client Spotlight, we are proud to feature the firm of Yates & Yates, LLP.

Yates & Yates, LLP is a law firm located in Orange, California, whose partners consist of Sealy Yates and his sons Matt and Curtis.

Originally formed by Sealy many years ago as a general service law firm, the firm today serves as one of the nation’s premier creative counsel for top-tier authors, artists and creative organizations.  The services they provide for their clients include agency representation, expert legal advice, marketing guidance, career coaching, creative counseling and business management consulting.  They are a full service firm for creatives, providing the highest level of experience and expertise in their industry.  It is the firm’s goal to help their clients make their ideas matter.

Yates & Yates, LLP has an impressive, lengthy client list that can be found on their website,

Nienow & Tierney, LLP has had the great fortune to be involved with Yates and Yates, LLP both personally and professionally for many years.  We shared office space with the firm in Orange back in the late ‘90’s and the relationships we built at that time have remained strong to this day.

We count it a privilege to work with clients such as Yates & Yates, LLP.