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Caesar's Brook Babblings

QuickBooks News You Can Use


February 2012 - Vol 5, Issue 2

In This Issue
Tax Reports and Filtering Options
QuickBooks 2009 Support Ends May 31, 2012
Phishing Email Warning
Set A Closing Date
Caesar's Brook
April 15 Is Tax Day

   

Greetings! 

Welcome to the February issue of Caesar's Brook Babblings!

 

This month's feature article is on QuickBooks built-in tax reports - a timely topic.  We also have a reminder that support for QuickBooks 2009 will be ending soon, a security notice regarding the latest QuickBooks-related phishing emails, and a QuickTip on Setting a Closing Date.

 

Here in New England this has been the winter that wasn't, but I'm on the lookout for signs of spring just the same. The Amaryllis blooming in our living room the past few weeks have been just what I needed.

 

Amaryllis are blooming 

FeatureFeature Article
 

April 15QuickBooks Income Tax Reports And Filtering Options: Target The Right Output 

 

April 15 is getting uncomfortably close.

 

Uncle SamQuickBooks, of course, can't do your taxes for you. But it helps you lay some of the groundwork. Following up on last month's column on customizing reports, we'll look at the program's tax-related reports and its powerful report-filtering options.

 

But first, you'll need to make sure that this output will be accurate.

 

Describe your company accurately

  

Your tax entity setting should have been established when you first set up QuickBooks, but verify that you've specified the correct one. Go to Company | Company Information. Your Report Information is in the lower left corner. Click the arrow next to Income Tax Form Used to see what's active.

 

Figure 1 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Figure 1: Make sure that QuickBooks is set up for the correct tax entity.

 

QuickBooks automatically assigns some of your accounts to their matching lines on the 1040 and assorted forms and schedules; this is called tax line mapping. So when you create tax reports, related transactions will be grouped by these designations.

 

This can be a real time-saver - as long as you've specified the correct entity. If:

  • <Other/None> was selected
  • This setting is incorrect
  • You're starting a business and don't know which to choose...

... please contact us. If you switch entities, your existing tax line mapping will disappear and will have to be reassigned.

 

Dedicated tax reports

  

Many of QuickBooks' general financial reports provide tax-related information. But there are some that specifically relate to the numbers that will go on your return. Go to Reports | Accounting & Taxes | Income Tax Preparation. Here's an excerpt of what you'll see:

  

Figure 2 

Figure 2: QuickBooks automatically assigns many accounts to the appropriate tax form lines, based on your specified tax entity.

 

Here, QuickBooks shows you which tax lines have been pre-assigned to your accounts.  You can specify a tax form line for unassigned accounts, but this is something you should not attempt on your own. This report, though, will give you an idea of how useful your report output will be and where you'll need assistance.

 

Other reports provide tax-related data. You can access them by going again to Reports | Accountant & Taxes and clicking:

  • Income Tax Summary. This displays totals for each tax line that's relevant to your particular tax entity. Double-click on any number, and the Tax Line By Account report appears, detailing every transaction related to every tax-related account (you could add a column for Tax Line in Display options and make this quite a useful report).
  • Income Tax Detail. This lists all individual transactions by tax form/schedule line assignment.

Paring it down

  

Some tax reports can be very lengthy; you may want to filter them to look at various "slices."

Click Customize Report | Filters:

  

Figure 3  

Figure 3: This window displays a powerful set of filtering options.

 

The options listed under Choose Filter are available on other reports; they help you set up incredibly complex searches using multiple filters.

 

Let's say you want a report that displays your installation labor costs on new residential construction from the last year (you could also throw other variables in). You'd simply choose the filters from the left pane and then select related options in the next pane (usually a list). You'd want to also click on the Display tab to make sure that the appropriate columns appear.

  

Figure 4 

Figure 4: You can apply multiple filters to your reports.

 

QuickBooks reports can shave time off of tax preparation, and filtered views help you scrutinize your data in quite creative - and very useful - ways. The program's boilerplate reports have their place in simple examinations of your financial status, but filters are potent tools. They can facilitate the kind of deep analysis that helps you make critical business decisions.

 

If you have questions on this or any other QuickBooks feature, call or email us. We're your partner and we're here to make your business better.

 

QuickBooks 2009 Support Ends May 31, 2012

 

QuickBooks 2009 ProLive technical support and add-on business services such as payroll, credit card processing, QuickBooks Email, and online banking will be discontinued for QuickBooks for Windows 2009, QuickBooks 2009 for Mac, and a few other products as of May 31, 2012.

For more information see:
 http://support.quickbooks.intuit.com/support/Articles/INF12842#products 

If you are still running QuickBooks 2009, now is a great time to upgrade.  Both Amazon and Costco currently have QuickBooks Pro 2012 on sale for $99.99.

 

Phishing Email Warning

 

Phishing EmailTwo new QuickBooks phishing emails are circulating this month.  The first is an email purporting to come from Bank of America and Intuit entitled "Tax Information Needed within 30 days".  The second purports to come from QuickBooks Online and informs you that your account has been discontinued because of the suspected violation of Intuit QuickBooks Terms and Conditions.

 

If you receive either of these emails:

  • Do not click on the link in the email.
  • Send a copy of the email to spoof@intuit.com.
  • Do not forward the email to anyone else.
  • Delete the email.
For more information visit Intuit's Online Security Center at:  http://security.intuit.com/index.php  

QuickTip: Set A Closing Date

 

Sorry We're ClosedOnce you've finished up doing your data entry for 2011 and sent your information off to your tax preparer, do yourself a favor.  Set the Closing Date in your QuickBooks file to 12/31/2011.  You'll find the Closing Date on the Company pull-down menu as well as on the Company Tab of the Accounting Preferences available from the Edit pull-down menu.  Setting a Closing Date and Closing Date password will prevent users from inadvertently making changes to closed periods.  If you use Estimates, Sales Orders, or Purchase Orders, check the box to exclude these non-posting transaction types. 

 

banner 2I hope you found these babblings useful.  Your feedback is important to me.  Please drop me a line and let me know what you think.

Sincerely,

Susan Dugdale
Caesar's Brook Business Solutions, LLC
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