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by Intuit Updated 6 months ago

Learn how to use Workpapers to review, adjust, and export your client’s QuickBooks Online accounts for tax season.

Workpapers for QuickBooks Online Accountant lets you review a client’s accounts from a single dashboard. After your review, QuickBooks assigns GIFI codes to each account. When all of your accounts are mapped, you can export the GIFI codes to Pro Tax (or as a .GFI file for other tax products) and get a headstart on your client’s tax return.

Here’s how to use Workpapers to get your clients’ year-end tasks completed. In this article, you'll learn how to:

Step 1: Open Workpapers

There are three ways to open Workpapers:

If you’re in QuickBooks Online Accountant, select the Clients tab. Find your client and select Review Data from the Workpapers column.

If you’re working in a specific client’s QuickBooks Online account, select Workpapers from the Accountant Toolkit. Each client has their own dedicated Workpapers page.

If you’re working in a specific client’s QuickBooks Online account, you can also access Workpapers under the Books to Tax section of the left navigation menu.

Step 2: Review your client’s accounts

Start your work in the Review and Adjust tab. Your client’s annual Balance Sheet and Profit and Loss Reports sit side-by-side for quick comparisons. You’ll also see last year’s totals, account differences, and any adjusting entries you’ve made in Workpapers.

To dive into a specific account and get a complete list of transactions:

  1. Expand the list of accounts.
  2. Select the account total in the column for the current year.

Under the Review and Adjust tab, you can toggle to and from a Trial Balance View to see debits, credits, percentage changes, and amount changes to the accounts year over year.

While in Trial Balance View, you can reorganize your workspace by clicking the gear icon to customize the information displayed.

Step 3: Make adjusting entries as needed

Workpapers has everything you’ll need to make adjusting journal entries.

Among many other uses, you can use them to adjust transaction totals without changing the original record. You can think of them like amendments.

To make an adjusting entry:

  1. Expand the list of accounts.
  2. Find the account on the list.
  3. Select Make adjustment from the Actions column.

Keep track of your work

The attach documents feature is currently unavailable, but it will be back soon.

If you need to retrieve old documents, you can download them from your old trial balance records. Don’t use your old trial balance for anything else.

Your documents will automatically transfer over when the attach documents feature returns.

Change the accounting method view

You can toggle between accounting method views to make your review easier. This won’t affect your client’s view or settings in QuickBooks Online.

  1. Select the pencil icon next to the accounting method.
  2. Toggle between Cash and Accrual.

Review the Change List

The Change List at the top of the Review and adjust tab acts like an audit log. Every time someone makes a change in Workpapers or QuickBooks Online for this time period, it’s logged on this list. For these changes to go through, be sure to select Accept Changes.

Step 4: Map accounts to tax forms

After reviewing your client’s accounts, you’ll assign them to specific lines on tax forms.

  1. Go to the Tax Mapping Tab.
  2. Select the pencil icon next to the form name.
  3. Select the appropriate tax form for your client.
Important: Edits don’t carry over if you change forms. If you change forms in the middle of mapping accounts, you’ll need to make the edits again on the new form.

Workpapers will automatically assign most accounts to GIFI codes. Accounts that still need to be assigned appear in the We found unmapped accounts section. Simply select Assign tax line and move them to the correct tax line.

Review each tax line individually for accuracy. If you need to reassign an account to a different tax line:

  1. Find the account on the tax form.
  2. Select the pencil icon to edit.
  3. Choose the correct tax line.

Step 5: Export the mapped tax forms

When you’re ready, you can import this data directly into Pro Tax.

  1. Select Pro Tax from your QBOA client list.
  2. On the next screen in Pro Tax, select Create New Return.
  3. Select QuickBooks Client Workpapers and input the required data for the correct client and year-end. Quickbooks will pull in your mapped GIFI data from Workpapers.

Pro Tax fills in form fields using your work. Check that everything exported correctly and complete your client’s return in Pro Tax.

Download a GFI for other tax preparation software

The downloadable GFI file is formatted for Lacerte tax preparation software. But you can edit the GFI file to work for other programs:

  1. Select the Choose tax option button.
  2. Select Export GIFI file.

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