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How Do You Know You Can Trust Your Payroll Service Provider?

Have you ever considered the level of trust you place in your payroll company for what may be your largest cash flow transaction each month? It’s huge!

It seems simple: you hire a company to draft the gross payroll, payroll taxes, 401K contributions, insurance premiums, etc. right before payday. Then, almost magically, all of the employees’ net pay shows up in their accounts, the IRS and states get their taxes and the various benefit providers are paid their appropriate share the next day.

Unfortunately, the process doesn’t always go so smoothly.

Recently, the FBI and IRS raided Service Provider Group, LLC of Knoxville, Tenn., apparently the parent company of First Financial Employee Leasing, for alleged financial improprieties. This bust isn’t the first time we’ve heard of problems with vendors of this type.

A local business lost tens of thousands of dollars to a similar company—it withdrew the payroll tax payment from the business’ bank account but failed to pay it to the government. Another local payroll leasing provider was shut down more than ten years ago for taking insurance benefit funds from clients but not paying the premiums for those clients.

You might argue that the payroll leasing company took the money, so it owes the government; but that isn’t how it works. Until Uncle Sam gets paid, you still owe the money – even if it means paying your obligations twice.

How do you know your payroll service provider is trustworthy? Go with a proven, leading service provider with the financial strength to run the company without dipping into your payroll dollars. We have researched many providers and several reliable ones exist.

We selected ADP to be our wholesale provider for the clients for whom we process payroll, as well as to process our own payroll. This company processes more payroll checks than any other, and its customer service is solid.

Payroll is not an area where you should cut corners.  Many times we’ve seen one internal payroll processing error or missed tax payment cost a company more than the total annual fees to outsource this vital activity. Direct deposits, competitive benefit providers, automatic tax payments, and return filing all in one simple, reliable service is worth paying for.

If you would like Patrick & Robinson CPAs to take away the headaches of your payroll processing and compliance, let us know and we will set it up for you.  You can reach us at or 904-396-5400.

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