Keeping your financial records in order is very important to the success of your business and ensures that your financial statements are accurate. Follow these steps to make the close of your fiscal year easy to execute.

1. Review your profit and loss statements in mid-December.
What does your revenue look like now that the year is almost over? Do you anticipate future invoices or expenses to greatly affect your profit? If your profit is large, talk to your tax advisor to see if there are ways to lessen your tax burden.

2. Verify your vendor and lender files.
Review information relating to any current outstanding loans. Verify vendor 1099 information is up-to-date and you have accurate W-9 Forms. Forms 1099 and 1096 are due to the IRS by 1/31/18.

3. Take inventory.
If you sell products, take a physical inventory and compare the results to the QuickBooks Inventory Valuation Report. Make any necessary adjustments in QuickBooks.

4. Reconcile all of your accounts.
Reconcile your credit card and bank accounts. Verify the statements match your records and investigate any unexplained discrepancies.

5. Review and update employee info.

  • Run reports for year-end (Employee Details, Payroll Details, Wage and Tax Summary).
  • Confirm your employees’ social security numbers, legal names, and current addresses.
  • Make sure all employee paychecks have been recorded (handwritten, termination, commission, and bonus checks). Verify employee wage and benefits are correct.
  • Review sick and vacation policy settings; confirm sick and vacation hours used.
  • Review tax rates and settings.
  • Update state unemployment insurance (SUI) rates effective 1/1/18.
  • Review and update any federal or state deposit schedules.
  • Prepare and file payroll tax forms (940, 941, W-2’s and W-3) by 1/31/18.
  • Distribute employee W-2s by 1/31/18. Wisconsin W-2s are due by 1/31/18 and Minnesota W-2’s are due by 2/28/18.

6. Create a budget for the next year.
Review your financial statements from the current year and create a budget to plan for the next year. By taking stock of your expenditures from the current year, you’ll have a better understanding of where to focus your efforts moving forward.

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Debbie Denny
I joined the Green Bay, WI office of Hawkins Ash CPAs in 2008. I am a Tax Manager and Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor. I have been certified in QuickBooks for more than 16 years. I specialize in software consulting and training, small business accounting and tax preparation. I am also experienced in Sage 50 software.

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