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Brian T. Kelly, CPA & Associates, LLC is a full-service accounting and consulting firm offering our clients superior expertise, specific industry expertise, technical resources, and personal advise from our team members.

With offices in Carbondale and Honesdale, PA, we are large enough to provide the technical expertise you need, yet small enough to deliver the personalized services you deserve.

We believe that your involvement at each level of the process adds value to our services and increases satisfaction through more informed decision-making.

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We offer accounting services for individuals, towns, and small businesses. We also conduct audits for governmental entities.


5 Tips to Prevent Fraud in Your Company

This article appears at

The article appears here with the permission of NEDCOCDC.

Small and midsize companies are at great risk and typically experience more fraud than larger companies according to the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). It is estimated that many businesses lose approximately 5% of their annual revenue due to incidents involving fraudulent activities.

According to accounting expert Brian Kelly of Brian T. Kelly, CPA & Associates, LLC, in Carbondale and Honesdale, PA:

“Fraud is an intentional act that can be carried out by one or numerous individuals within an entity. The smaller the entity the greater the risk of fraud due to limited internal controls or qualified personnel. As an owner of a small business, it is imperative to review monthly internal reports, bank statements, payroll reports for any suspicious disbursements or unusual transactions.”

Having an effective fraud prevention program in place is one of the best ways you can minimize fraud in your company. Here are 5 tips to prevent fraud by implementing proactive techniques designed to stop employee fraud.

Tip 1 – Perform Background Checks

One way to help prevent fraud is to start early during the hiring process by always performing accurate background checks. Be sure to check references, current employment, certifications, credit, and licensing for all new hires.

Tip 2 – Segregate Duties

Remember that no one employee should have too much control or power over sensitive information or duties like accounting and accounts payable. Always review payroll checks and never allow the person who receives mail reconcile accounts.

Tip 3 – Require Authorization

Ensure the employees aren’t exceeding their authority by requiring authorization for all important transactions or activities.

Tip 4 – Audit

Have procedures for independent audits including inventory counts and surprise check ups to deter employees from committing fraud and encourage compliance with company policies. You should also provide a means to allow other employees to report fraudulent behavior anonymously.

Tip 5 – Have a Manual

Having an employee manual that outlines both acceptable and unacceptable behavior sets expectations for your employees right from the start. It clarifies the rules and gives your employee an important point of reference.

Follow these tips to minimize fraud in your small business and promote a productive work environment that sets your employees up for success.


7 Tips to Detect Fraud in Your Business

This article appears at

The article appears here with the permission of NEDCOCDC.

Completely preventing fraud may be the ultimate goal for small business owners, but what can you do to detect fraud that may already be occurring inside your company?

According to accounting expert Brian Kelly of Brian T. Kelly, CPA & Associates, LLC, in Carbondale and Honesdale, PA:

“In order to detect fraud in your business, (which can be very difficult due to collusion of employees, or trusting someone that has been your employee for numerous years), you must review “financial and non-financial information. As a business owner, you must meet with your senior level and lower level employees to discuss business operations, employee attitudes, comparative financial results and most importantly non-financial results to investigate any unusual or ‘head scratching’ observations.”

If you have suspicions of fraud in your small business, here are 10 things to look for that could lead you to discover fraudulent activity.

Tip 1 – Missing Documents

Missing documents are usually a major indicator of fraudulent activity. Naturally, accidents do happen, but you should always have clear explanations for missing documents are ensure that proper procedures are in place should documents go missing in the future.

Tip 2 – Complaints from Clients or Employees

It’s true that not all complaints may be warranted, however, it’s important that you pay attention to the complaints you receive surrounding a particular activity (or employee) in your organization, and they be a red flag for suspect activity.

Tip 3 – Suspicious Behavior

Be aware if any employee suddenly displays a suspicious change in behavior, such as excessive smoking, drinking, or increased irritability and defensiveness.

Tip 4 – Excessive Voids

Excessive voids are often a big indicator of theft. Be sure to watch for voided sales, duplicate payments or bogus refunds that lead to stolen money by an employee.

Tip 5 – General Ledger Out-of Balance

When your general ledger is out of balance, it is a sign that money or merchandise may have been stolen but the perpetrator was unable to make a false entry in order to force balance the records.

Tip 6 – Inventory Shortages

If you notice a sudden and drastic inventory shortage, it could possibly be caused by embezzlement or theft.

Tip 7 – Expense Accounts

Fraud is often concealed in individual employee expense accounts so it is extremely important to monitor usage and require reasonable explanations for discrepancies found.

Use this list to help detect fraud in your company and avoid many of the common pitfalls experienced by other small business owners.