California Enterprise Zones

What is an Enterprise Zone?

Enterprise Zones are State established areas targeted for economic development. There are 42 Enterprise Zones in California and Companies are encouraged to expand within them, making them eligible for lucrative tax incentives. Most people do not realize that areas like the Financial District in San Francisco, Downtown San Jose, Los Angeles, Long Beach, and San Diego are included within the boundaries.

How much money can I save with the Hiring Credit?

A single employee can generate close to $40,000 of tax credits during the first five years of employment. The beauty is that you can look at employees hired in the last two to nine years depending on which of the 42 zones your business falls within, and retroactively generate cash refunds.

What type of employee qualifies?

The program was designed for a large percentage of employees to qualify. The majority of companies greatly underestimate the credit they are entitled to. There are 13 different ways an employee can qualify and on average, 30% of your employee population will qualify. Employees can be full-time, part-time, minimum wage to top management. Everyone is a candidate!

Common Enterprise Zone Misconceptions


Did you know that if you hired someone out of school or any academic program (MBA, Law School, Bachelors, etc.) they could potentially qualify regardless if you are paying them $40,000 or $200,000?

How about if you hired a new employee who was previously earning less than $40,000 a year or was out of work for a couple months in between jobs?

If they were in the Military, left their previous employer due to company relocation or closure, or if they live in a certain area they could even qualify.

There are 13 different ways an employee can qualify and statistically 1 out of every 3 employees will qualify. Even if you or your CPA has already looked into this, it is a good idea to review again to ensure you are fully maximizing the benefit.

The program was designed for a large percentage of employees to qualify.


Almost all Companies that do the program internally themselves or have their CPA perform the employee screening are leaving up to 80% of the credits on the table.

If you are claiming the credit and you can use more credits (meaning you are still paying California tax) it is wise to invest 10 minutes of your time to determine the potential for additional credits.

How is this possible?

Give us a call and we can quickly explain or have your CPA call us directly.

You may be saving $20,000 — but what if you really should be saving $80,000?


This common misconception is the reason why many companies leave thousands of dollars on the table. Your employee does not have to live in
a certain area to qualify.

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