Here we are, on the verge of 2016's close. The end of the year can be a hectic time for those with accounting-related duties. There are books to square up, new guidelines to learn about, and tax season to prepare for. We've assembled some information that will hopefully make those tasks easier...or at least more approachable.
Have You Enrolled in the Sage Payroll Subscription Plan?In May of this year, Sage removed the Payroll and Direct Deposit modules from the Sage Business Care Plan and put them into a separate Payroll Subscription service. Since then, Sage 100 Payroll customers have been expected to enroll in the Payroll Subscription service at the time of their annual Sage plan renewal (although clients on a rental or 100c plan may enroll at any time). Clients on supported versions (2014 and higher) who have the Payroll module – but who don’t have a current Payroll subscription – will still have access to TTU, IRS, and ACA updates for year-end filing through April 30, 2017. However, as of May 1, 2017, only clients with a Sage Payroll Subscription plan will receive updates.
The Sage Payroll Subscription plan includes Gold (i.e. unlimited) support from Sage. It also includes the Direct Deposit module and Sage Direct Deposit Services at no additional charge. However, the Direct Deposit module and services are available only for Sage 100, version 2015, Product Update 4 or higher.
To enroll in the Sage Payroll Subscription service, customers will need to wait to be contacted by Star Lester from Sage. Star will begin contacting customers on Wednesday, December 14 to discuss the subscription plan and enroll those who are interested.
2017 Tax Table Update and the Interim Release Download for A/P
In December, Sage will release a 2017 tax table update for Sage 100, versions 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017 (lower versions will not receive the update). An Interim Release Download (IRD) will also be released that will contain program updates for the Accounts Payable and Payroll modules. We're happy to schedule appointments with our clients who would like assistance installing these downloads. The ideal scheduling time, if you have the Payroll module, is typically after your last payroll of 2016 and before your first payroll of 2017.
Although Bennett/Porter is more than happy to help with the updates, clients who are enrolled in the Sage Payroll Subscription plan may want to contact Sage in order to use their "free" Gold Payroll support for assistance with the year-end downloads. However, any clients (whether on the Payroll Subscription plan or not) with installed enhancements or modifications to their Sage 100 software should contact us for assistance with the IRD download, as those customizations may require updates and/or reinstallation when the IRD is installed.
For clients who are on Sage 100, version 2013 or lower – or who do not have a current Sage Business Care plan, we can manually update the tax tables. The average appointment takes between 15 minutes and one hour, though it may take longer if enhancements or modifications are installed.
Aatrix is Sage’s answer to the required A/P and Payroll form filing. You can use the software to electronically file your 1099s, 1096s, State Quarterlies, 941s, 1094s, 1095s, W-2s, and W-3s, or you can use it to just print the forms and then manually send them in. Aatrix was added to Sage 100 (MAS 90/200), version 4.3 and above for both W-2 and 1099 processing, and it is much easier to use than the conventional filing methods.
Payroll Tax Changes for 2017
FICA Limit for 2017: The Social Security Administration (SSA) announced that the maximum amount of wages in 2017 subject to the 6.2% Social Security tax (old age, survivor, and disability insurance) will rise from $118,500 to $127,200 – an increase of more than 7%. The maximum amount of Social Security tax a taxpayer could pay will therefore increase from $7,347 in 2016 to $7,886.40 in 2017 – an increase of $539.40.
Medicare Tax: The additional .9% Medicare Tax on "highly compensated individuals" that was implemented in 2016 will remain in place for 2017.
Federal and State Withholding: We expect the Federal Withholding Tax Tables to change a bit for 2017, but we don't have the information yet to give to you as to what those changes are/will be. That's true for the State of Oregon Withholding Tax Tables as well.
Washington SUTA: The State of Washington SUTA limit will rise from $44,000 in 2016 to $45,000 in 2017.
Oregon SUTA: The State of Oregon SUTA limit will rise from $36,900 in 2016 to $38,400 in 2017.
Workers’ Benefit Fund: The State of Oregon Workers’ Benefit Fund Assessment will decrease from the 2016 amount of $ .0165 per hour worked for each the employer and employee (a total of 3.3 cents per hour worked) to the 2017 assessment of $ .0140 per hour for each the employer and employee (a total of 2.8 cents per hour worked).
Tri-Met Tax: Oregon Tri-Met Tax will rise from $.007337 in 2016 to $.007437 in 2017.
Lane County Tax: Lane County Mass Transit District Tax will rise from $ .0071 in 2016 to $ .0072 in 2017.
Wilsonville Transit Tax: The Wilsonville Transit District Tax remains the same as it was in 2016 at the rate of $ .005.
401k Limit: The 401k limit remains the same as it was for 2016 – which is $18,000 – and the catch-up contribution limit for employees aged 50 and older remains unchanged at $6,000.
Mandatory Sick Leave: Mandatory Sick Leave in The State of Oregon has not changed from 2016. It dictates that for every 30 hours an employee works, the employer has to pay one hour of sick pay.
ACA Reporting Deadline: As announced in Notice 2016-70 by the IRS, the due date for furnishing to individuals the 2016 Form 1095-B (Health Coverage) and the 2016 Form 1095-C (Employer-Provided Health Insurance Offer and Coverage) has been extended from January 31, 2017 to March 2, 2017. The deadline for filing Forms 1094-B, 1095-B, 1094-C, and 1095-C with the IRS is February 28, 2017 if filing on paper, or March 31, 2017 if filing electronically.
FUTA Tax: FUTA tax for Washington and Oregon employees remains the same as it has been: .6% of the first $7000 paid annually to each employee (note that several states, including California, Connecticut, and Ohio, could have a higher FUTA tax rate because of the loans those states have with the Federal Government).
IRS Reimbursable Mileage Rate: As of today, the 2017 Mileage Rate has not been announced. We expect the 2017 rate to be announced within the next two weeks.
Bennett/Porter’s W-2 and 1099 Processing Service
For clients who would like to have their W-2 and/or 1099 forms e-filed with the IRS, e-filed with The State of Oregon, printed and mailed to employees or vendors (or all of the above), Bennett/Porter offers a W-2 and 1099 Processing Service. Processing service is billed at an hourly rate plus the cost of forms and mailing (if applicable). For more information, or to request an order form for this service, get in touch with us.