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UK Payroll Discontinuation for QuickBooks Desktop      

Thank you for using QuickBooks Desktop Payroll. These help pages will support your move to another solution during April 2020.

Should you need any help please contact us via messaging.

Whilst you will now be able to access the payroll centre until August 01, 2020 (previously April 19), you will be unable to run payroll in desktop after March 2020.

If you are moving to QuickBooks Online with Advanced Payroll please see Move from UK QuickBooks Desktop with Payroll to QuickBooks Online with Advanced Payroll.

This article has the steps you need to take in order to move to QuickBooks Online Payroll/another payroll application and the Desktop UK Payroll Discontinuation FAQ article has frequently asked questions.


  1. Intuit will not charge you for desktop payroll after March 2020 and you will be automatically moved to a similar subscription without payroll. Based on the described billing change you will receive a standard billing notification with no reference to the payroll discontinuation during April. To talk to us about your subscription call our Customer Success billing team on 0808 164 2373.
  2. You must update to QuickBooks for Desktop 2020 R6 on or shortly after March 24, 2020 (previously March 19). Please ensure automatic updates are enabled.
  3. You will be able to download the majority of your payroll data but not your P60's or customised payroll reports. Please ensure P60's and customised reports are printed/saved as they will not be available after August 1, 2020.


Run your March payroll, complete year-end 2019/20 and then export your payroll data.  You will need QuickBooks for Desktop 2020 R6 which will be available from March 24, 2020 (previously March 19).


Exporting Your Data

Downloading payroll data can take some time. For large payrolls, this can be in excess of 20 minutes. If you cancel the data download no data will be downloaded.

If you cancel the data export no data will be exported.

  1. Ensure you are logged in as Admin User and QuickBooks is in single-user mode. To switch between modes, go to the QuickBooks File menu, then select Switch to Single-user Mode/Switch to Multi-user Mode
  2. From the File menu select Utilities, then Export and finally Payroll Data
  3. The next step informs you there will be no access to the payroll centre after April 19, 2020. Confirm you have read the notice and then select Begin payroll data export.
  4. Next, create a password to protect your data. You will be asked for this password when unzipping/accessing the unzipped folder(s) once exported
  5. Choose the desired destination folder for your data and select OK. The export will begin.
  6. Exported Successfully will be displayed when the export has completed. There will also be a link to the destination folder you selected
  7. When in the folder the data has been saved it can then be extracted from the password-protected zipfile


Your exported payroll data will include:

  • FPS (used to move to QuickBooks Online Payroll)
  • EPS
  • EYU
  • Payslips (current year)
  • All Payroll Reports (not customised)

You need to review which bookkeeping and payroll solution is best for you. Please complete this form if you would like to discuss your payroll options with a member of the QuickBooks.

See payroll comparison pages if required.

NOTE: Please ensure you move your core desktop bookkeeping data before importing/entering your employee payroll data. When importing bookkeeping data from desktop to QuickBooks Online, any data already entered in QuickBooks online WILL BE DELETED.


  1. Migrate core bookkeeping data from desktop. NOTE: Prior to migrating data you should rename your payroll liability and expense accounts, e.g Payroll Expenses (Desktop) and Payroll Liabilities (Desktop). This ensures QuickBooks Online can create new payroll expense and liability accounts when running your first payroll. The old desktop payroll accounts can also be renamed in QuickBooks Online post-migration.
  2. Next, you can either manually complete the employee records already exported with your bookkeeping data, or you can delete/make the employees inactive and re-import them. The latter may save time for larger payrolls of 20+ employees as more employee data is transferred. If you chose to re-import, you can import your payroll data to Quickbooks Online Standard Payroll using an in-product wizard. For Advanced Online Payroll please see importing into Advanced Payroll by CSV.
  3. Finally, contact Desktop Customer Success on 0808 164 2373 to cancel your Desktop subscription when not required. We recommend running desktop in parallel to QuickBooks Online for  1-2 months.

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