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Payroll Updates for QuickBooks Online – 2024

by Intuit Updated 3 months ago

In this article you'll find answers to some of the most common questions around the migration of your QuickBooks Online Payroll plan:

The new QuickBooks Payroll lineup

This is a comprehensive table outlining the features available in our Payroll plans — Core, Premium, and Elite. Whether you are looking for basic payroll processing or more advanced time tracking solutions, we have a plan that's right for you.

FeatureQuickBooks Payroll StandardQuickBooks Online Payroll CoreNEW PLAN! QuickBooks Online Payroll PremiumNEW PLAN! QuickBooks Online Payroll Elite
Run payroll with efficiency and confidence.Streamlined payroll and time tracking with expert support.Comprehensive payroll with project and time tracking.
Comprehensive payroll
Auto payroll
Tax forms
Payroll reports
Record of Employment
Workers’ compensation 
Workforce portal and app
Free guided setup
Electronically file and pay taxes 
Direct Deposit2-day2-dayAs fast as next-dayAs fast as next-day
Prioritized support (for clients)
QuickBooks TimeQuickBooks Time PremiumQuickBooks Time Elite
Time tracking
Employee access
Job and shift scheduling
Mobile app
Geofencing technology
Project-based collaboration 
Track projects with detailed reports

The main incremental benefits of the new QuickBooks Online Payroll Premium and Elite plans are related to QuickBooks Time being included, as fast as next-day direct deposit**, and prioritized product support for clients. On the Premium and Elite plans QuickBooks Time is automatically included as a feature. The other benefit is that Premium and Elite have faster direct deposit of payroll. On the new tiers, direct deposit is as fast as the next day with Premium and Elite. Core will remain at 2 business days.

Pricing for the new QuickBooks Payroll lineup

 Payroll CorePayroll PremiumPayroll Elite
Base Fee$25/month$55/month$80/month
Employee Fee$4/month per employee$8/month per employee$15/month per employee

Frequently asked questions

Why are we moving existing payroll customers to the new plans?

This change will help enable feature enhancements and capabilities on the latest platform. By making this transition, we open up the capability to add new features in the future, making our Payroll offering even more versatile than it is today.

Will the movement of Payroll subscriptions to the new Payroll plans impact all Payroll customers?

This transition will only apply to customers who subscribed to Payroll prior to August 22, 2023. All customers who subscribed to Payroll after August 22, 2023 will already be on one of the new plans.

What QuickBooks Payroll plan will I be switched to?

Please review the chart below to help you understand which new plan you will be moved to:

From To
Payroll existing Payroll Core 
Payroll existing + QB Time Premium Payroll Premium 
Payroll existing + QB Time Elite Payroll Elite 
Employee fee billed based on the number of employees that payroll was run for during the monthEmployee fees billed based on active employees in payroll at the beginning of the month 

Note: on the transition month invoice you will see employee fees billed for the month end and for the next month. This is a one-time occurrence as the employee-fee billing is transitioned.

Is there a price change for QuickBooks Online Payroll plan once Intuit has transitioned them?

The base and employee fee pricing will be updated to the current market price. Pricing for the new payroll plans can be found here.

Will there be an impact to the employee fee within QuickBooks Online Payroll?

There is no impact to the employee fee. However, there will be a change to how the per-employee fee is billed once the transition takes place. On the new QuickBooks Online Payroll plans, the per-employee monthly fee will be billed based on active employees at the start of the month, as opposed to the number of employees payroll was run for during the month as it is today. In other words, on the new Payroll plans, the employee fee will be billed on active employees whether they were in the payroll run that month or not.

You should update employee status for those employees who won't be in the monthly payroll run to Inactive to ensure they will not be included in the employee fee calculation.  Learn more about making employees inactive here.

For example, here is how the per-employee fee worked previously:

  • 6 active employees in a month
  • Payroll is run on 3 of them
  • The $4 per employee fee will be billed on 3 employees
  • $4 per employee x 3 employees = $12 for that month

On the new Payroll plans, the employee fee will be applied to all active employees vs. only those for which payroll was run in the month.

For example:

  • 6 active employees in a month
  • Payroll is run on 3 of them
  • The $4 per employee fee will be billed on all 6 active employees
  • $4 per employee x 6 active employees = $24 for that month

Note: This only applies to customers who are new subscribers to the Payroll Core, Premium, and Elite plans (on or after August 22, 2023). These changes will impact existing Payroll clients who are direct billed prior to that date.

Lastly, on the transition month invoice you will see both employee fees and subscription fees billed for the last month end and for the upcoming month. This is a one-time occurrence as the employee fee billing is transitioned.

Per employee sample billings (calculations based on Payroll Core fees)

Sample 1 – Employees not being paid remain in Active status:

Billing monthActive EmployeesEmployees Paid in current monthPer-employee BillingBilling Date
March633 employees paid X $4 = $12March 31
April636 active employees X $4 = $24April 30 *
May636 active employees X $4 = $24April 30 *
June636 active employees X $4 = $24May 31

* Both April (bill after) and May (bill ahead) charges will appear on the April 30th bill.

Sample 2 - Status updated for Employees not being paid:

Billing monthActive EmployeesEmployees Paid in current monthPer-employee BillingBilling Date
April6 336 3 active employees X $4 = $24 $12April 30 *
May336 active employees X $4 = $12April 30 *
June336 active employees X $4 = $12May 31

* Both April (bill after) and May (bill ahead) charges will appear on the April 30th bill.

How do I check which employees are active in QuickBooks Online Payroll?

To change the status of an employee to active or inactive, follow the steps found here.

Will there be pricing benefits once my subscription transitions to the new plans?

Customers who have combined employee fees (Payroll + QuickBooks Time) will benefit from a price reduction once they are on the new payroll plans. Additionally, these customers could get faster direct deposit and prioritized support.

Will there be any impact to my QuickBooks Online Payroll invoice?

All existing Payroll customers will be moved to the new employee fee billing outlined above. When this happens, you will see 2 payroll charges for the employee fees only on the monthly billing statement in which the transition takes place: 

  • 1 for the prior month (same as current billing method) and,
  • 1 for the month ahead (new employee fees billed in advance ). 

Prior to the billing period when you're moved to your new plan, we recommend that you review the payment method to ensure it will accommodate the combined billing for that one month. 

Moving forward, the per month employee fees billing will remain on the billed-in-advance model.

What will the invoice look like?

For an example of what your invoice will look like after your account has been migrated over to the new Payroll plan, see here.

Will there be an impact if auto payroll is enabled?

All customers that rely on auto payroll will not see an impact to this feature unless there are insufficient funds to cover the combined payrolls. If there are not enough funds, auto payroll will be disabled and employees will be unpaid.

I ‌purchased QuickBooks Online Payroll prior to August 22, 2023, when will I be transitioned to the new payroll plans?

This transition will be taking place in 2 phases this year:

  • direct-billed clients will begin transitioning in April 2024, 
  • all wholesale-billed clients (billed through your accountant) will be transitioned in June 2024.  

We plan to have all customers transitioned by July 2024.  More information will be shared in advance of each transition period to help ensure a smooth switchover.

Can I choose a different QuickBooks Online Payroll plan to transition to?

Yes, once you are switched over, you’re free to move between the various plans.  Learn more about our new Payroll plans here.

Will we be able to generate T4s/RL1s for inactive employees?

Yes, any employee paid within the tax year and eligible for a T4/RL-1 will get the tax slip even when inactive.

What is the definition of as fast as next-day direct deposit?

As fast as next day indicates that payroll will be deposited to the employee as soon as the next day if it is submitted up to 5:00 PM (PT) the business day before payday. For a small segment of bank branches, it could take up to 2 days to process the payment as per the requirements of that individual branch.

Important pricing details and product information

**Fast payroll direct deposit: Available to QuickBooks Online Payroll Premium and Elite customers only. Payroll submitted before 5:00 PM PT will be processed the same business day (excluding weekends and holidays) and deposited into the recipient’s bank account next day, or in 2 business days, depending on the recipient’s bank (i.e. a small percentage of bank branches require 2 business days for direct deposit). Requires setup of direct deposit and bank verification. May be subject to eligibility criteria. Deposit delays may vary because of third party delays, risk reviews, or issues beyond Intuit’s control. Available only for employees, not available for contractors or tax payments.

**QuickBooks Time: Time tracking is included in the QuickBooks Online Payroll Premium and Elite subscription services. Features vary and may be available in English only.

Terms, conditions, pricing, special features, and service and support options subject to change without notice.

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