One of the most commonly used features ofQuickBooks is their online banking. It not only allows for easier and more accurate input of data into the system, but it can also make the reconciliation process quick and easy, provided that there are no duplicate or missing transactions. Online banking allows you to connect credit card and bank accounts to QuickBooks. This way, you don’t need to manually enter transactions, just download or import, then match, and add to your register.
As the name implies, you need an Internet connection to use this feature. Also, your financial institution needs to offer this service. Once you have met these two requirements, then you are ready to activate your QuickBooks online banking. However, you may encounter errors when setting it up, when downloading transactions, or while working on downloaded transactions either when using QuickBooks Online or the desktop version.
Errors and Fixes for QuickBooks Desktop Online Banking
When working on QuickBooks Desktop, it is always important that you have a supported version of the program to continue using some of its features, such as online banking. This does not mean that you need to have the latest version, but you must have a version that less than two years old (counting back from May 31st of the current year). It is also recommended to always install the program on a computer that meets the system requirements.
Error codes that start with"OL" and "OLSU" are common when activating online banking or when downloading new transactions. There are several possible reasons for these errors:
On some occasions, you may not be able to merge the accounts or deactivate the Online Services. This may mean that there is a more serious data damage, which often requires the file to be sent to Intuit’s Data Services team.
Common QBO Bank Feed Errors
As an alternative to Direct Connect, which is the automatic downloading of bank transactions inside QuickBooks, Web Connect can be utilized specially when dealing with bank-related issues that may take a day or more to be resolved. Web Connect is available for both QuickBooks Desktop and QBO. It is also the solution if your financial institution no longer offers Direct Connect. This option also allows you to download and import the transactions beyond the last 90 days.
Before switching to Web Connect, make sure to first deactivate the Online Services for the account in QuickBooks. Then login to your bank’s website and verify that you can download a .qbo file of your bank transactions. As opposed to Direct Connect, Web Connect needs you to download the file from the bank’s website, save it to your computer, and import it into QuickBooks. But the process of matching and adding the transactions to the register is the same.
For additional QuickBooks Training call Mike McVay, Accountant at Pensacola Bookkeepers - 850-725-5696
The IRS has always been able to match individual tax returns against information statements and propose underreporter adjustments that come in the form of CP2000 notices. But things are changing, and a new era at the IRS is upon us. Now, the IRS is using information statements to find underreporting on business returns. For practitioners across the country, this will add to the already increasing level of post-filing compliance activity they are seeing. More interest in business income In September, the IRS started its first information return-matching program for business return Forms 1120, 1120S and 1065. This program matched business return incomes to the total amounts reported on all information returns. This year, business taxpayers also started receiving Form 1099-K, Merchant Card and Third-party Network Payments, reporting amounts received from payment settlement entities (from debit/credit cards and third-party network payers such as PayPal). To avoid taxpayer burden, the IRS stated in a to the National Federation of Independent Business on Feb. 9 that it will not require taxpayers to separately report amounts from Forms 1099-K on returns, and has no plans to in the future. On Nov. 16, the IRS announced that it will start questioning businesses with smaller-than-expected income, based on its analysis of Forms 1099-K reported to the business. Interestingly, the IRS cannot propose specific adjustments to the return because it can’t match Forms 1099-K directly to line items on 2011 business returns. However, the IRS is contacting taxpayers when it thinks that there is a discrepancy. The IRS determines this probability based on the taxpayer’s line of business and a perceived disproportionate share of credit/debit card and third-party network payments reported on Forms 1099-K, compared with gross receipts from other sources reported on the tax return. Last week, as reported by the National Association of Tax Professionals (NATP), the IRS indicated that it is starting three compliance initiatives: A soft-touch inquiry that asks taxpayers to review their returns more closely A correspondence audit An underreporter notice and assessment, similar to the CP2000 automated underreporter program used for individual income discrepancy adjustments The NATP reported that the IRS will send out about 20,000 letters to small businesses. The notices to expect As part of this initiative, the IRS created four new letters that question business returns with possible unreported income, based on a Form 1099-K analysis. These letters question the accuracy of your client’s return. Each letter provides information on the reported gross receipts on the return, as well as the total amount for Form 1099-K payments received. The letter will also provide information on the specific Forms 1099-K filed on your client’s business. If your client receives Letter 5035, 5036, 5039 or 5043, Notification of Possible Income Underreporting, your client may have underreported gross receipts. The IRS compared the amount in gross receipts reported on the return to the amount in receipts from merchant card payments on Forms 1099-K. Based on the IRS’ analysis of your client’s industry (presumably using the merchant category code on Forms 1099-K), the IRS thinks that your client may have more income than what is reported on the filed return. Depending on the letter, your next steps vary. Here’s how to respond to each letter. Letter 5035 Actions requested by the IRS: Review the accuracy of the information shown on the notice and the filed return. How to respond: This is a soft notice, which doesn’t require a direct response. Your client should take appropriate action based on a review of the information provided and the return filed. Possible next actions by the IRS: None Letter 5036 Actions requested by the IRS: Review the accuracy of the information shown on the notice and the filed return. File an amended return, if necessary. How to respond: This notice has the potential for an IRS underreporter assessment or audit. Respond to the IRS with one or more of the following actions, depending on your client’s situation: A description of inaccurate Form 1099-K information listed on the notice An amended return filed for additional gross receipts An explanation that the return and the Form 1099-K information shown on the notice are accurate, and an explanation for why the business’s gross receipts from card payments are higher than expected Deadline: 30 days; the IRS provides a fax number for responding Possible next actions by the IRS: The IRS does not specify its possible next actions with this notice. However, Publication 3498-A, The Examination Process (Examinations by Mail), is attached, indicating that if your client doesn’t respond to this notice, a discrepancy adjustment notice or a mail examination could result. Letter 5039 Actions requested by the IRS: Review the accuracy of the information shown on the notice and the filed return. Complete Form 14420, Verification of Reported Income. How to respond: This notice has the potential for an IRS underreporter assessment or audit. The IRS requires a completed Form 14420 in your response. Deadline: 30 days; the IRS provides a fax number for responding Possible next actions by the IRS: The IRS states four possible next actions: The IRS will contact your client if it needs additional information. The IRS might propose an adjustment to the taxes due. The IRS might send a letter stating that no further action is required. If your client doesn’t respond to the notice, the IRS might propose an additional tax assessment, underreporter assessment or audit. Letter 5043 Actions requested by the IRS: Review the accuracy of the information shown on the notice and the filed return. File an amended return, if necessary. How to respond: This notice has the potential for an IRS underreporter assessment or audit. Respond to the IRS with one or more of the following actions, depending on your client’s situation: A description of inaccurate Form 1099-K information listed on the notice An amended return filed for additional gross receipts An explanation that the return and the Form 1099-K information shown on the notice are accurate, and an explanation for why the business’s gross receipts from card payments are higher than expected Deadline: 30 days; the IRS provides a fax number for responding Possible next actions by the IRS: The IRS states four possible next actions: The IRS will contact your client if it needs additional information. The IRS might propose an adjustment to the taxes due. The IRS might send a letter stating that no further action is required. If your client doesn’t respond to the notice, the IRS might propose an additional tax assessment, underreporter assessment or audit. Completing Form 14420, Verification of Reported Income The IRS provides a new two-page form to reply to Letter 5039: Form 14420, Verification of Reported Income. The form requests: Verification of the accuracy of Forms 1099-K filed under your client’s name Estimates of gross sales by Form 1099-K reportable transaction categories (such as online, phone or catalog, gift cards, lottery tickets) to explain why the portion of gross receipts is higher than expected Information on other individuals or businesses that shared a card terminal with your client and would have received merchant card receipts reported on your client’s account The IRS estimates that it will take three to six hours to prepare, copy and send Form 14420 to the IRS. The IRS expects to use Letter 5039 and Form 14420 in 5,600 pilot cases for 2011 returns. This could be a costly letter for your clients, when you consider the time needed to analyze your clients’ records used to prepare the return. Business information matching may resemble CP2000 Business information matching, including Form 1099-K matching, is a pilot program for the IRS. The IRS has released the letters on its , but it hasn’t provided any details on how it will propose additional assessments. However, the IRS is attaching Publication 3498-A, The Examination Process (Examinations by Mail), to most of the letters. This indicates that the IRS intends to assess additional tax using deficiency procedures – similar to how the IRS assesses tax in CP2000 individual underreporter inquires and audits.
Here is the situation: you have received a letter from the IRS; they are reviewing a previous tax year and you must provide support for your tax position(s). Hence, you are being audited.
Numerous taxpayers are audited on a yearly basis. You won’t be the first or the last. Since the IRS is such a large government institution, the process will be slow. The best thing you can do is remain calm and begin to make a plan. We have seen an uptick in audits for 2014 - 2015. The IRS has a new tool to analyze your credit card merchant account compared to your gross sales reported. If your industry average is higher than other same industry averages will possibly trigger an audit.
Read the Audit Letter.
Once you have taken the time to thoroughly examine the letter and its contents, determine what they looking for? Audits vary in length and scope. Pay attention to the time frame the IRS has provided for you to compile the requested documents. McVay Business Services know the pitfalls of IRS audits. We know what the IRS look for and consult our clients on best practices to avoid such audits.
Gather all information requested.
Begin gathering the info requested. If you maintain good records, the process may be easier. If you are having difficulty locating certain documents, you may call and request an extension . If necessary, you may send the information piecemeal as some auditors appreciate some information rather than none. It is important to send only those items requested. Obviously, the IRS has the power to open additional audits of anything/anyone they feel is questionable or suspicious. So while you may think offering additional supporting information would be helpful, it may in the end cause additional issues. Rule of thumb is to stick to their list, The IRS will notify you if additional information is necessary. McVay Business Services suggest calling us for a FREE consultation so that you know what and what not to give the IRS. The IRS will try to get you to voluntarily give up more info then the IRS audit calls for. This is not a good idea for many reasons. Call Mike McVay, Accountant to find out why this practice could put you into a bad situation with your audit.
Work with the auditor.
Auditors are people too! More often than not, auditors are willing to work with you. Being upfront and honest can go a long way. If you are unable to locate a receipt, tell them. They may allow a credit card invoice or some other proof of payment as alternative substantiation. The number one advice I tell all my clients, in a case of an audit, be polite, forthcoming, however do not talk to much and never offer anything the auditor does not ask for.
Talk through the results and ask questions.
Once the auditor has reviewed your paperwork, they will inform you of any issues. In some cases, you may be asked to provide more substantive evidence for expenses. In other cases, the auditor may try to assess penalties. In all of these instances, make sure you ask questions to understand why such circumstances are occurring. Many times, penalties are negotiable and occasionally even completely abatable. Make sure you take the time to understand what’s happening and go from there. Never pay an IRS bill until your call you'r accountant in Pensacola Florida. McVay Business Services, Tax Specialist.
Pay the tax.
Once you’ve gone through the process and settle on what you believe to be the final tax owed, make sure you pay it! This sounds straight-forward, taxpayers often think they can deal with the balance at a later time. The IRS will assess additional penalties and interest on any outstanding amounts due. If needed, payment plans are available.
If you are the subject of an audit and are unsure of the actions being taken, or have questions about the process, feel free to contact Mike McVay, Intuit Accountant in Pensacola, Florida. 850-725-5696. firstname.lastname@example.org
No one ever said running a business was easy, but most business owners don’t realize that one of the most difficult aspects of their job will be bookkeeping headaches. Virtual accounting and bookkeeping services can solve some of the biggest problems for fast-growing businesses with revenue between $2 and $25 million. Let’s look at the top 7 reasons business owners call upon a virtual firm for their accounting and bookkeeping needs:
1. “I never get the financial reports I need, when I need them.”As a business owner, you wouldn’t think looking for timely and accurate bookkeeping is asking for a lot. But, if you’ve been using an in-house bookkeeper who doesn’t know their job or the bookkeeping software as well as they should, you may not get what you need in terms of bookkeeping services. On the other hand, a virtual accounting firm will deliver all the reports and statements you need on a daily basis, so the information that will help you run your business is right at your fingertips.
2. “Hiring and training bookkeepers is a hassle. Just when someone learns the job, they leave.”Have you struggled with finding qualified bookkeepers? Why not leave the hiring and training process to an experienced virtual accounting and bookkeeping service? A high quality virtual accounting firm hires only the best-of-the-best online bookkeepers and virtual accountants from across the United States. A premiere virtual accounting firm also requires its bookkeepers to pass Quickbooks certification exams annually, so your bookkeepers stay up-to-date on software revisions and new capabilities of QuickBooks.
3. “My books are just a mess. They’re not balanced and I have no idea where we stand financially.”You’ll never have to worry about out-of-date or inaccurate books with 24/7 access to your financial dashboard and a financial controller who can explain anything you may not understand.
4. “I don’t need a full-time bookkeeper. But I definitely need some help with bookkeeping services!”Often, fast-growing businesses aren’t quite ready for full-time bookkeeping services, but the individual they have doing their books is overworked at certain times of the month and bored at others. With a virtual accounting firm, you get the bookkeeping services you need, when you need them, all at one monthly rate. Virtual bookkeeping services are scalable, so as your business grows, you and your virtual accounting firm can re-evaluate your virtual accounting and online bookkeeping needs.
5. “I’m afraid we’ll be audited, and I don’t trust the accuracy of my company’s bookkeeping records.”This is a big fear, understandably, of business owners. If you do get audited, a reputable virtual accounting firm will stand by your side through the whole audit process, helping you provide the information your auditors need to make their decision.
6. “We’re losing money because we’re not job costing properly, if we do it at all.”Accurate job costing goes beyond Accounting 101 and, for that reason, if you’re not using a professional accounting and bookkeeping service to manage your bookkeeping, it may not be done properly. A successful virtual accounting firm helps businesses make more money every day just by establishing better, more accurate job costing processes.
7. “I need help with payroll to make sure it gets out accurately and on time.”Payroll can get complicated for fast-growing businesses, especially if you have employees who work and travel across state lines. Your virtual accounting team will work with your payroll company to ensure this crucial part of your business is always accurate and on time.
What’s your biggest bookkeeping headache? We can help. Mike McVay, Accountant 850-725-5696. www.PensacolaFLTax.com
The topic of minimum wage increases has been discussed extensively in the media, in political forums and in private debates. While some lawmakers want to leave the minimum wage as it is, others are pushing to increase it in order to improve the financial situation of the working poor. In fact, several cities in the United States have already passed laws to gradually increase the minimum wage until it reaches $15 per hour. Although these wage increases may be beneficial to workers, small business owners are skeptical with regard to the effect a wage increase would have on their financial situations. Wages in Pensacola, FL may be lower than most larger cities. For tax services in Pensacola, FL contact Mike McVay, Accountant at 850-725-5696.
Understanding the Concern
The most obvious result of a raise to the minimum wage for a small business is an increase the business's expenditures. When the minimum wage goes up, the total of small business wages paid out to employees for the same amount of work must go up as well. This increase in expenditures cuts into the company's profit, which may lead to financial problems or even business failure. Business owners may end up laying off or reducing employee work hours to remain profitable. Some critics of the minimum wage increase have even argued that raising the wage would force businesses to raise their prices, which would be harmful to the very people the minimum wage increase was designed to help.
In spite of the concerns posed by critics of a minimum wage increase, recent research indicates that the effect of a minimum wage increase may not be as harmful as some think. Studies have shown that states with higher minimum wage requirements experienced more payroll and employment growth than states with a lower minimum wage. The number of small businesses located in states with a higher minimum wage also grew twice as quickly as those that were located in states with a lower minimum wage. Furthermore, researchers were unable to find any link between minimum wage increases and increases in business failure.
Preparing for a Wage IncreaseRegardless of your concerns, it is likely that the minimum wage will increase in the coming years. Congress has rarely waited so long to enact a minimum wage increase in the past, so an increase seems inevitable. In addition, even though the results of research indicate that minimum wage increases shouldn't be harmful to small businesses as a demographic, the individual business may still suffer if it isn't properly prepared for this change. If you are concerned about preparing for an eventual wage increase, please contact McVAY BUSINESS SERVICES. 850-725-5696 - Mike@MikeMcVay.com
Once you’ve filed your return to the IRS, you’re finished with your taxes for the year — at least that’s the hope. But if the IRS has questions about your filing, your return could be flagged for an audit. The prospect of an audit can be frightening, but the reality is that the IRS audits around 1% or fewer of taxpayers each year. Due in part to its shrinking budget, the IRS reports it audited 1.2 million returns in fiscal year 2014 — about 12% fewer audits than in the previous year and the lowest number since 2005. It’s unlikely that you’ll be audited, but if you are, it’s a big deal. Here’s what you need to know about how the IRS decides to audit you and what to do if it does. Your chance of an audit It’s tempting to think only your current year’s return can be audited, but the IRS can audit your past three years of returns. If returns look especially suspicious, the agency could go back as far as six years. The IRS uses the Discriminant Information Function system to determine which returns get audit-level attention. This system compares your return with others filed by people with similar professions and incomes and assigns it a DIF score. If the financial information in your return varies significantly from the information provided by your peers, your return gets a high DIF score, which increases the chances you’ll be audited. The DIF is more likely to trigger audits on the returns of high-income earners. Because the IRS has endured budget cuts over the past few years, it must focus its resources where it gets the most lucrative results. But while the returns reporting high income levels incur the greatest percentage of audits, taxpayers with more modest means still see their fair share.
Mike McVay, Tax Accountant Blog
Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor & Licensed Tax Accountant Pensacola, FL
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