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Lead Payroll Tax Accountant

Mid-Senior Level | Full-time
Finance & Accounting | livermore, CA | 10/13/2021

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Company Description

Join us and make YOUR mark on the World!

Are you interested in joining some of the brightest talent in the world to strengthen the United States’ security? Come join Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) where our employees apply their expertise to create solutions for BIG ideas that make our world a better place.

We are committed to a diverse and equitable workforce with an inclusive culture that values and celebrates the diversity of our people, talents, ideas, experiences, and perspectives. This is essential to innovation and creativity for continued success of the Laboratory’s mission.

Job Description

We have an opening for a senior level Lead Payroll Tax Accountant to work in a dynamic and fast paced environment.  Responsibilities will include directing the preparation, analysis, maintenance, and review of complex institutional accounting, financial, and tax reporting information. This position is in the General Accounting & Compliance Division of the Office of the Chief Financial Officer (OCFO) Organization.

In this role, you will

  • Serve as a key member and tax subject matter expert, provide strategic leadership, direction, and oversight to the Payroll Tax portion of the Institutional and Corporate Tax Accounting Team to assure services are appropriately aligned to meet customer needs and comply with the provisions of Contract 44, Cost Accounting Standards (CAS), Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), applicable California State and Federal regulations, policies and procedures. 
  •  Supervise an exempt staff, providing leadership and day-to-day work direction including review of work products and deliverables provided to Payroll, Benefits and Accounts Payable and other teams in Finance in collaboration for meeting payroll tax compliance requirements.   Direct and oversee all activities associated with the payroll tax accounting function.
  • Reconcile, adjust, and verify the preparation and the filing of Laboratory payroll tax returns with a third-party provider, including federal and multi-state withholding taxes for employees in various states and multiple jurisdictions.  Assist the Payroll Tax Accountant in over-seeing and maintaining the engagement relationship with the Payroll tax third party filing provider and the Laboratory’s Payroll group, while ensuring compliance with Contract 44, Cost Accounting Standards (CAS), Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP), applicable federal and state regulations, and policies and procedures as they apply to tax. 
  • Serve as a Tax Liaison for taxing authorities as it pertains to payroll tax and to participate and lead as appropriate on long-term projects requiring highly complex solutions to payroll tax-related problems, recommend and implement appropriate courses of action.
  • Independently research and respond to highly complex questions concerning federal and state withholding issues, prepare position papers and recommendations.
  • Reconcile tax account balance sheet general ledger accounts, prepare journal entries; provide analysis and interpret complex accounting data; provide advice and make recommendations for proper accounting and tax treatment and prepare various ad hoc reports.
  • Perform other duties as assigned.


  • Ability to secure and maintain a U.S. DOE Q-level security clearance which requires U.S. citizenship
  • Bachelor’s degree in Accounting, Finance, Business, or equivalent combination of education plus substantial experience, or equivalent education, training, and experience in the finance/accounting/tax field.
  • Extensive experience preparing and filing multi-state payroll and/or entity state and local tax returns; experience in tax research and interpretation of tax laws.
  • Complete in-depth knowledge and understanding of taxation, accounting theory, CAS, GAAP, and financial policies and procedures.
  • Extensive experience with decision making, problem-solving and analytical skills to solve complex issues requiring mature judgment, discretion and tact, and experience negotiating desirable outcomes and making effective and timely decisions.
  • Complete knowledge and understanding of foreign national employee's taxation requirements.
  • Complete knowledge and understanding of Change of Station tax law including tax equalizations and gross ups.
  • Significant experience in researching, compiling, and analyzing highly complex financial data and information as well as in the development, implementation and interpretation of financial policies and procedures.
  • Expert organizational skills and expertise; excellent interpersonal communication skills both verbal and written, to effectively explain, negotiate, persuade, and build consensus amongst diverse stakeholders; experience establishing and maintaining effective working relationships with all levels of personnel. 
  • Expert level experience in the development and maintenance of financial spreadsheets containing advanced functions, including significant experience utilizing commercial and institutional financial tools and report-generation applications. (e.g., Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint).

Qualifications We Desire

  • Public Accounting tax experience.
  • Large company multi-state payroll tax experience.
  • A Certified Payroll Specialist (CPS) or CPP (Certified Payroll Professional) Certification

Additional Information

Why Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory?

  • Included in 2021 Best Places to Work by Glassdoor
  • Work for a premier innovative national Laboratory
  • Comprehensive Benefits Package
  • Flexible schedules (*depending on project needs)
  • Collaborative, creative, inclusive, and fun team environment

Learn more about our company, selection process, position types and security clearances by visiting our Career site

COVID-19 Vaccination Mandate

LLNL demonstrates its commitment to public safety by requiring that all new Laboratory employees be immunized against COVID-19 unless granted an accommodation under applicable state or federal law. This requirement will apply to all new hires including those who will be working on site, as well as those who will be teleworking.

Security Clearance

LLNL is a Department of Energy (DOE) and National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Laboratory.  Some positions will require a DOE L or Q clearance (please reference Security Clearance requirement above).  If you are selected and a clearance is required, we will initiate a Federal background investigation to determine if you meet eligibility requirements for access to classified information or matter. In addition, all L or Q cleared employees are subject to random drug testing.  An L or Q clearance requires U.S. citizenship.  For additional information please see DOE Order 472.2.

Pre-Employment Drug Test

External applicant(s) selected for this position will be required to pass a post-offer, pre-employment drug test. This includes testing for use of marijuana as Federal Law applies to us as a Federal Contractor.

Pre-Placement Medical Exam

A job related pre-placement medical examination may be required.

Equal Employment Opportunity

LLNL is an affirmative action and equal opportunity employer that values and hires a diverse workforce. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, marital status, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, medical condition, pregnancy, protected veteran status, age, citizenship, or any other characteristic protected by applicable laws.

LLNS is committed to offering reasonable accommodations during the application and recruiting processes due to a disability.  If you need assistance or an accommodation due to a disability, please submit a request via our online form

California Privacy Notice

The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) grants privacy rights to all California residents. The law also entitles job applicants, employees, and non-employee workers to be notified of what personal information LLNL collects and for what purpose. The Employee Privacy Notice can be accessed here.

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