Celebrating 20 Years in Business • 2004 - 2024

Recordkeeping for Tax Purposes

Any recordkeeping system that suits you and your company and clearly shows your income and expenses is OK with the IRS. It’s the business you’re in that affects the type of records you need to keep for federal tax purposes.

And for how long should you keep records? For as long as needed to prove income or deductions on a tax return, according to the IRS. How should you record business transactions? All supporting documents from purchases, sales and payroll contain information you need to record in your books. Keep all records of employment taxes for at least four years after the tax was due or you paid it, whichever date is later. IRS Publication 15 addresses the types of employment tax records to retain.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce reasons that if the IRS audits your business or you need to adjust a return, it will be vital to have complete, accurate documents. Failure to keep records could increase your taxes owed substantially and, in some cases, result in penalties.

  • Retain records for three years after filing your return.
  • If you file for a bad debt deduction or loss from worthless securities, keep documents for seven years.
  • If you underreport income, and it’s more than 25% of your gross income, retain records for six years.
  • If you filed a fraudulent return or no return at all, keep tax and supporting documents indefinitely.

Add a year to the statute of limitations period. At a minimum, this means keeping tax returns for four years. But it may be more prudent to retain them for seven years. Most tax advisers tell business owners to keep most tax records for seven to 10 years, if not permanently. Why? The responsibility to substantiate entries, deductions and statements made on your tax returns, known as the burden of proof, is on you, especially for certain elements of expenses you deduct.

Advice from the government

The IRS lists several documents that small businesses and self-employed individuals should keep:

  • 1099s.
  • Cash register tapes.
  • Audit reports.
  • Charts of accounts.
  • Depreciation schedules.
  • Annual financial statements.
  • Fixed asset purchases.
  • A general ledger.
  • Inventory records when using the last in, first out method.
  • Tax records.
  • Canceled or substitute checks for real estate purchases.
  • Information about leases or mortgages.
  • Patent and trademark details.
  • Corporate shareholder reports.
  • Employee pension and profit-sharing plans.
  • Construction records.
  • Leasehold improvements.

Always keep business records available for inspection by the IRS, according to IRS Publication 583. An electronic storage system “must provide a complete and accurate record of your data” and be accessible by the IRS.

Your system “must index, store, preserve, retrieve and reproduce the stored documents and books in a legible format.” The IRS can penalize your firm if your electronic records don’t meet its requirements and you have already disposed of the paper documents.

What else you should save

Supporting documents to back up your tax returns and bookkeeping records:

  • Gross receipts — Documents showing the sources and amounts of your gross receipts, including bank deposit slips.
  • Inventory — Keep canceled checks, credit card sales slips and invoices to show what you paid for stock and proof of payment.
  • Expenses — Save receipts, proofs of purchase, canceled checks or account statements for each business expense.
  • Travel, transportation and gift expenses — Follow IRS guidelines in IRS Publication 463 to meet additional recordkeeping rules for these expenses.
  • Assets — Save supporting documents like canceled checks, purchase and sales invoices, and real estate closing statements.

Talk to your creditors or insurance company before discarding tax records, as they may require you to keep them longer than the IRS does. Keeping records for your business can seem overwhelming — everything from paying your taxes to planning for the future rides on your having accurate numbers. Make sure your storage system is secure and safe from the elements.


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Emily Gooding

Payroll Specialist

Emily is graduating in May with a BA in Business Administration from Lander University. She has gained valuable experience as a payroll intern for BMW. We are so excited to have her on the team and  to see her excel in her role as a Payroll Specialist.

Madison Capps​

Payroll Specialist

Madison received a BS in Psychology from Southern Illinois University in 2019. Since then, she has been working as a supervisor at Starbucks and earning her second degree, a BA in Administration and Accounting, from USC Aiken in the fall. She will be joining us as a Payroll Specialist and a valuable addition to our Paysmart team.

Kristen Wilby

Payroll Specialist

Before moving to South Carolina with her husband, Kristen worked as a Sales & Marketing Specialist for Premium King in Feasterville, PA, where she gained valuable experience in strengthening the brand and generating new business. Kristen also brings to our team several years of professional experience as an Executive Assistant and as an Office Manager, where she was first introduced to payroll. Kristen’s knowledge and her innate ability to establish genuine relationships contribute greatly to the team as we continue to grow and serve our clients.

Meg Whitaker

Payroll Specialist

Meg brings nearly twenty years of professional experience to the team. Most recently, she worked as a Payroll & Benefits Specialist in Centennial, Colorado. She and her husband recently moved back to the Carolinas for his job, and we were fortunate to find her! Before Colorado, Meg worked at CPI Security Systems in Charlotte, NC, for twelve years as a Billing Coordinator and Senior Administrative Assistant. She also gained three years of experience as an HR Assistant for a law firm in Fayetteville, NC. Her expertise significantly adds to our team and benefits our clients as we continue to grow!

Rachel McClaran, EA


Rachel plays a crucial role in developing Paysmart’s core processes and procedures, as well as overall strategy within the company. Rachel graduated from Bob Jones University and is an active member of the Junior League of Greenville and the South Carolina Association of CPAs. Her desire to serve her community has led her to become involved with several nonprofit organizations and to serve as the past Vice President of Finance for the Junior League of Greenville. Outside of the office,Rachel enjoys spending time on the water and traveling with her husband and their two children.

Hina Rogers

Payroll Specialist

Hina joined the Paysmart team in August 2022. She grew up in Portland, Oregon, before moving to Greenville, SC. She earned both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in education. After college, she represented her alma mater as an enrollment counselor in the Southeast and Western states. She enjoys traveling, road trips, cooking, and quality time with her family. Hina looks forward to serving your company’s needs! 

Sharon Quantrille

Payroll Specialist

Sharon has spent several years in the accounting industry and has completed courses to hone her skills as a Payroll Specialist. Her background as an educator, professional musician, and Human Resources Generalist has contributed to her communication skills, commitment to professionalism, and organizational skills that make her a tremendous benefit to her Paysmart clients and colleagues. A graduate of Bob Jones University with a B.S. degree in Music Education, a Master of Music degree in Piano Performance and a Human Resources Generalist Certificate, Sharon spends her free time gardening, hiking, playing the piano, and spending time with her four adult children.

Haleigh Bates

Payroll Specialist

Haleigh joined our team in May of 2022 as a payroll specialist. Haleigh has over eight years of experience helping personal and small business clients with their financial needs. She received her Bachelor’s Degree from Georgia Southern University. She enjoys spending time with her husband and their three children, Caden, Addie, and Mason.  She likes to go hiking, spend time at the beach, and volunteer at her church in the children’s ministry. 

Courtney Rossello

Payroll Tax Manager

Courtney joined the team at Paysmart Payroll Services in September 2020.  She was raised in Simpsonville, SC, and graduated from Clemson University in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in political science and a concentration in public administration.  Courtney began her payroll career in 2011 and currently works in the payroll tax department at Paysmart.  She strives to make every client feel comfortable knowing their payroll taxes and tax returns are handled accurately and efficiently.  Courtney is also a volunteer Treasurer for a local middle school in Greenville County.  In her spare time, she enjoys volunteering with special needs children, road trips, and spending time with her two daughters. 

Emily Hargrave

Senior Payroll Specialist

Emily received her bachelor’s degree in music from West Coast Baptist College. Since her college days, Emily has gained nearly 18 years of experience in office operations and project management. Emily joined Paysmart in 2017 and enjoys using her skills to support clients and the Paysmart team.

 At heart, Emily is a small-town country girl from the Midwest but is happy now to call the Upstate home, where she doesn’t have to endure harsh winters. Emily’s favorite ways to spend her free time are reading a good book, challenging herself with puzzles, and doing her best not to kill the plants in her garden.

Julie Shull

Client Success Specialist

Julie is the Client Success Specialist for Paysmart Payroll.  She joined the team as a Payroll Specialist in March of 2020. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from NC State University and earned an MBA from Gardner-Webb University while playing on the GWU women’s tennis team. After starting her career with Wilson Sporting Goods as a Financial Analyst, she took a few years off to raise twin boys until she began working for Greenville County Schools in 2014.  Julie enjoys spending time with her family and outdoor activities.

Brad Detandt

Payroll Administrator

A graduate of Northland International University with a BA in Counseling, Brad Detandt leads the day-to-day operations of the Paysmart team. He is eager to grow the firm’s client portfolio. He brings a diverse employment background in retail, manufacturing, nonprofit ministries, and business development, with
a specialized focus on team development and process improvement. Brad’s professional – and personal – mission is to “Be Great. Serve!” Brad enjoys spontaneous activities and weekend trips to state parks with his wife Miranda and his three children.

Stephen C. Stokes

Managing Partner

Stephen has more than 14 years’ experience working with individuals and businesses to meet their tax, accounting, and payroll needs. He has been the managing partner of Paysmart Payroll Services since January 2009. He is a licensed certified public accountant in South Carolina and Georgia. Stephen is also a member of the South Carolina Association of CPAs, the Georgia Society of CPAs, the American Institute of CPAs, and the Professional Association of Small Business Accountants. He has a bachelor’s degree from Bob Jones University and a master’s degree from Georgia State University. Stephen was born and raised near Atlanta, Georgia and moved to Greenville, South Carolina, several years ago. He enjoys spending time with his wife, Tiffani, and daughters, Madeline and Julianna. He is actively involved in his church and enjoys reading, sports, and other outdoor activities.