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Payroll Year-End To Do's

It's that time of the year to wrap up 2022 payroll duties. Here are a few reminders to help you close out your payroll for the year.

Late November/Early December:

  • Remind employees that if there has been a change in their filing status (e.g., due to marriage, divorce, or dependents), they may want to file a new W-4 and state tax form for 2023.

  • Compare the previous W-2 with gross wage report.

  • Confirm that employee name, address, date of birth, and Social Security numbers are correct.

  • Verify all employees are taxed in their correct state.

Before your last payroll of 2022:

  • For tax purposes, checks or electronic payments of wages paid in 2023 are generally 2023 wages, even if earned in 2022.

  • Check all Social Security tax withheld. If any employee exceeded the 2022 limit, make an adjustment or refund before making your final tax-year 2022 deposit.

  • Verify that all special wage payments and adjustments are correctly posted to 2022 earnings before processing 2022 W-2s. These may include:

o Non-qualified relocation expense reimbursement

o Group term life insurance in excess of $50,000

o Third-party sick pay if the employer has responsibility

o Manual or voided paychecks not in the payroll system

o Personal use of company vehicles, parking and/or company-provided transportation

o Employer-paid childcare

o Company-paid educational assistance

o Bonuses

o Non-cash payments

After your last payroll of 2022, but before the first payroll of 2023:

  • Process W-4s submitted for 2023.

  • Review discrepancies such as missing addresses, and missing Social Security numbers.

  • Check for excess contributions to qualified plans, including 401(k), 403(b), especially for highly-compensated employees.

  • Check accumulators – Make sure the year-to-date numbers are zeroed out.

  • Review applicable state/local minimum wage changes.

  • Schedule any special bonus payrolls.

  • Verify that the new year month-end close-out dates are accurate.

  • Confirm that for the new year the schedule of pay dates, period ending dates, and quarter closing dates, are as intended and do not fall on holidays or weekends. If the end of the calendar year coincides with benefits policies resetting, inform employees about unused benefits.

  • Vacation, sick days, or personal leave time: Annotate any remaining paid time off and communicate it to the employees so that they can schedule and coordinate leave time accordingly.

  • Flexible spending accounts (FSAs) and health reimbursement accounts (HRAs) for medical costs and dependent care: Usually, FSAs have a use-it-or-lose-it feature. Advise employees about the terms of your plans and remind them in advance.

Record All Processed Paychecks

While you won't be able to finalize your annual payroll and tax numbers until after the final pay period, you can get a jump start on recording and verifying everything that has already been processed. Review previous pay periods to ensure that all amounts are logged accurately by verifying the following:

  • Employee wage amounts

  • Benefits deductions

  • Child support or other miscellaneous deductions

  • Disability or other benefits payments

  • Special tax exemptions that may have occurred throughout the calendar year

As part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, eligible employers may have deferred the employer portion of Social Security taxes through the end of 2022. If your organization opted to take advantage of this relief measure, you'll also need to verify the deferred amounts, which can affect the amount of taxes due in 2023.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to Kiwi Partners' HR Services team.


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